Gretta Stark has been a reporter for the River Falls Journal since July of 2013. She previously worked as a reporter for the New Richmond News from June 2012 to July 2013. She holds a BA in Print and Electronic Media from Wartburg College.
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Twelve teachers and staff are retiring from the St. Croix Central School District at the end of this school year. Not only is SCC losing nearly 11 percent of its teaching staff due to retirements, it will also lose around 300 years of experience, according to District Administrator David Bradley.
This year's Good Neighbor Days co-grand marshals are both active military members. Mike Gunderson and Eric Fisher have been named the 2011 grand marshals. Roberts Lions President Gerilynne Wood said the Lions are thrilled to have the servicemen as Roberts grand marshals. Not only do Gunderson and Fisher serve their country, but the Roberts community as well. Both Gunderson and Fisher have lived in Roberts for 11 years and have been active in the community when not deployed.
The second annual Central St. Croix Area Chamber of Commerce Good Neighbor Days Medallion Hunt is officially over. The medallion was found on Tuesday, May 31. Nate Hetrick and his twin 4-year-old sons Caleb and Cory found the medallion the same day the first clue was posted on the chamber's website. Hetrick said he read the first clue online a little after 8 a.m.
Class motto: "Life brings tears, smiles and memories. The tears dry, the smiles fade, but the memories last forever." Seventy-nine left their paw print at St. Croix Central High School last Friday. St. Croix Central High School's Graduation and commencement ceremony was last Friday, May 20, in the Tom Sempf Gymnasium. SCC's Class of 2011 had 79 graduates, and of those, 28 were honor students. Forty-one scholarships were awarded to students totaling $25,106. Administrators, scholarship presenters and students reflected on the students' past at SCC through speeches and the class video.
St. Croix Central Middle School English and science classes will soon have 20 "field desks" to share thanks to freshman Alex McKenna. During the public comment time at the regular school board meeting Monday, May 23, McKenna gave a presentation to the board about the Eagle Scout project he created to benefit the school. McKenna is at the Rank of Life in Troop 161. He said he approached high school science teacher John Tackman last November about the project to see if there was a need for field desks in his class or at the middle school.
The goal of an evening golf tournament on Friday, June 17, is to raise money for a towel warmer at the American Heritage Care Center, as part of the center's "Honoring Traditions" program. "By definition honoring traditions is a holistic approach to care that increases resident autonomy and quality of life by residents prioritizing their needs and choices," said AHCC Administrative Intern Betsy Thompson.
The News has been following Caleb Peterson's, 21, Roberts, second battle with cancer over the last six months. After three types of chemo therapy were ineffective in treating Caleb Peterson's brain tumor, risky brain surgery was the only option. In a more than six-hour surgery on March 8 doctors at St. Mary's Hospital in Rochester, Minn. removed the tumor and all cancer cells visible through a surgical microscope. Almost three months later Peterson is Boston bound for a unique radiation therapy well-suited for his rare form of cancer.
Community gardens have been sprouting up in the area. Central Community Gardens has locations in Hammond and Roberts and space is still available for residents interested in renting a plot for the summer. The Roberts community garden is 1,600 square feet and is located at Cross Lutheran Church, 1246 County Road TT. There are two community garden locations in Hammond; St. Mary's Catholic Church at 1265 Ridgeway St. starts at 2,400 square feet and the lot starting at 8,000 square feet is located in the Hammond Industrial Park at 1420 Fithian St.
When it comes to exceptional volunteers at the American Heritage Care Center, Bev Gillis, 82, of Hammond, is at the top of the list. On Friday, May 6, Gillis was given the Volunteer of the Year Award at the AHCC volunteer brunch. For more than 25 years Gillis has volunteered at the Care Center by calling bingo, serving lunch, visiting with residents, helping with activities and more.
Necessary roof replacements could cost the St. Croix Central School District more than $2 million over the next seven years. The need for new roofs district-wide was briefly discussed at the SCC Board learning meeting on May 2. At the meeting SCC Superintendent David Bradley told the board that a recent analysis from the Garland Company projected a cost of $2.2 million to replace the roofs on all three school buildings over the next seven years.