Kara Hildreth / contributor
When Rich Klahr drove his Wayne Transports 18-wheeler into a Port Aransas neighborhood, he was welcomed like a superhero. Klahr was showered with applause and hugs from 40 volunteers who stood in the street cheering and giving him standing ovations. He drove 1,350 miles over 20 hours from Farmington to Port Aransas with a truckload of cleaning supplies, lumber, windows, doors and small appliances to donate to the coastal Texas town that experienced 85 percent loss of homes, businesses and schools after Hurricane Harvey.
Rosemount High Marching Band had a sea of support as it shined in the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade. "It felt really good to represent Rosemount on the national level and we had a sea of gold to support us," marching band drum major Caleb Maeda said "We have wonderful students that were so eager to travel and so excited to perform and the trip overall was just incredible," added Bojan Hoover, one of four band directors.
Entrepreneur Scott Hughes believes a quote from former New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter: "There may be people who have more talent than you but there's no excuse for anyone to work harder than you do." "This is one of my favorite quotes in life because I think to get the returns in life, you have to put in the work," Hughes said.
The Farmington School District's graduation survey reports most respondents are comfortable paying the current graduation ceremony fee. Barb Duffrin, Farmington educational programs director, created an online graduation survey that was emailed to parents and students to ask for feedback about venue, cost and number of graduation tickets. The Farmington School Board discussed graduation at past meetings and voted to conduct the informal online survey at its Sept. 11 board meeting.
Celebrating old and new traditions will be a big part of Dazzle Day in Farmington. Josh Solinger, president of Farmington Business Association, looks forward to seeing the community show up for Dazzle Day on Saturday, Dec. 2. Solinger reminded the public to mark their calendars so they can celebrate as neighbors and as a community during the holiday season. Last year, the Farmington tradition of Dazzle Day was canceled because the group needed to rethink how it wanted to celebrate. The trees downtown that were lit up and decorated were not looking healthy.
The Farmington School District will move forward and review boundary changes to be implemented in the 2019-2020 school year. Back in October, the school board discussed potential boundary changes. The board agreed to move forward and review many factors involved with changing school boundaries. Jane Houska, district finance director, updated the school board on the boundary changes and potential school start times at the Monday, Nov. 13, board meeting.
Farmington police Sgt. Lee Hollatz thrived when investigating cases. Hollatz, 55, was recognized for his nearly 23 years of service by the city of Farmington at the Nov. 6 city council meeting. Police Chief Brian Lindquist awarded him his police badge on a commemorative plaque. Lindquist and Hollatz shared in a full bro-style bear hug after working together for more than two decades. This year the veteran Farmington police force will welcome three new officers who will replace three departing officers.
Farmington High senior Anna Urbach challenges all to play an active role in closing the equality divide in the United States. "According to Ronald Reagan, all great change begins at the dinner table," said Josh Wilson, senior at Farmington High who acted as master of ceremonies at the Nov. 9 Farmington Patriotic Day Celebration. Prior to the program, the community gathered to share in conversation and enjoy a free pork chop dinner served by volunteers, civic leaders and Farmington Yellow Ribbon Network.
Veteran Reid Erickson can live with more independence because of the care, nurture and skills of his service dog Milton. Milton has gained a reputation of "melting hearts" when people meet the sweet golden retriever. Erickson, 36, retired from the military in August 2014. He experienced a traumatic brain injury when he broke his neck after being near an explosion in Afghanistan. Today he lives 100 percent disabled and experiences frequent blackouts.
Maj. Gen. Jon Jensen has been sworn in as the 31st adjutant general of the Minnesota National Guard. Gov. Mark Dayton administered Jensen's oath of office during a formal ceremony Saturday, Nov. 4, at the Minnesota National Guard Armory in St. Paul. Back in August, the governor appointed a committee that ended up selecting Jensen as a finalist. As the leader of Minnesota National Guard, Jensen will be in charge of more than 13,000 soldiers and airmen who live and work throughout the state.