Archive for News

Vehicle crashes through fence in Woodland Township

WOODLAND TOWNSHIP, MN – A man from Duluth was transported to North Memorial Hospital early Tuesday morning after his vehicle crashed through a barbed wire fence in Woodland Township, according to the Minnesota State Patrol.

Seth Benjamin Rajavuori, 27, of Duluth, was driving a 2007 Hyundai van east on Highway 12 near Clementa Avenue (between Waverly and Montrose) when his vehicle veered across westbound lanes and went into the ditch, going through a barbed wire fence, according to the report.

Rajavuori’s injuries were not listed on the state patrol report, but it stated that he was taken to North Memorial Hospital. He was not wearing a seat belt at the time of the crash.

The accident was reported shortly before 4:30 a.m. Assisting agencies included the Wright County Sheriff’s Office, the Montrose Fire Department, Ridgeview Ambulance, and North Memorial Aircare.

Relay For Life is Saturday, July 22

DELANO, MN – The Delano Relay For Life will take place from 2 p.m. to midnight Saturday, July 22, at Central Park, 650 Third St. N. in Delano.

The Relay For Life is open to the public, and the entire community is encouraged to attend and participate in the many activities and ceremonies planned throughout the day.

Individuals do not need to be on a team to participate in the event activities. The theme for the event is “Finish the Fight – Super Heros Unite.”


Local resident, Frank Muckenhirn, will be the survivor speaker during opening ceremonies at 2 p.m.

Muckenhirn was diagnosed with prostate cancer December 2004, after his prostate specific antigen count elevated from a 4 to a 9 in a short period of time and a biopsy confirmed he had cancer.

“It was not what I wanted to hear,” Muckenhirn said, noting it was an aggressive form of cancer.

Tests showed the cancer was contained in the prostate, so Muckenhirn opted to have it removed, followed by 35 radiation treatments.

“They must have done their job, as I have been cancer free, to the best of my knowledge, since that time,” Muckenhirn said.

He will share his survival story.

The caregiver speaker at 8:30 p.m. will be Mary Reuter, who has been caring for her mother battling cancer. Reuter has been involved with the Relay for many years, playing the bagpipes while participants light the luminary bags.

Organizers will also be honoring Delano High School student Alex Weed during this ceremony as he continues his journey with cancer. The “Alex Weed” song, written by Delano High School teacher Joe Lawrence, will be sung by the DHS choir during this ceremony.  This song was featured by local media earlier in the spring.

Mike Merriman and Scott Shoutz are the emcees and DJs for the event.


New this year is a craft show from 2-7 p.m. Community members are invited to check out the wide variety of crafts for sale.

A National Guard climbing wall, from 4-6 p.m., has also been added as a new feature and, at 4 p.m., a Super Hero Parade will take place, with community members encouraged to dress as their favorite super heros and participate.

Home Depot returns for kids’ activities, putting on a kids’ workshop, as well as an inflatable bounce house, face painters, frozen T-shirt contest, and a photo booth, just to name a few.

Each campsite will have activities and food, as well.

Delano Lions will be serving dinner from 4:30-6 p.m. for $6. There will be music by “3 Crows Music Jam” from 4-6 p.m. and Star Seekers Productions will perform from 6-7 p.m.

This year’s silent auction will be online July 14-20, and  carry over to a live silent auction at the event until 7:30 p.m. Further information regarding the online silent auction can be found in a different article in this paper.

WHPS seeks speeding motorcyclist

This squad car camera image shows a motorcyclist West Hennepin Public Safety is seeking.

This squad car camera image shows a motorcyclist West Hennepin Public Safety is seeking.

INDEPENDENCE, MN – West Hennepin Public Safety is seeking a motorcyclist who sped away from an officer Monday morning.

At 7:44 a.m. an officer from West Hennepin Public Safety attempted to stop a speeding motorcycle eastbound on Hennepin County Road 6 from Nelson Road in Independence. The suspect driver refused to stop for the officer’s red lights and siren. The suspect was driving recklessly at speeds of more than 100 mph. The officer terminated the pursuit as it was deemed too dangerous to continue and put others at risk. The suspect was last seen traveling north on County Road 90 from County Road 6.

WHPS is seeking the public’s help to identify the driver of the motorcycle. The officer involved stated the motorcyclist’s shirt was a blue or grey T-shirt with large fish picture on back.

The driver of the motorcycle was a white male in his late 20s to early 30s, about 6 feet tall, with a skinny build and a scruffy face. The motorcycle was a 2000s model “crotch rocket”, dark in color (black or red).

Anyone with information in regards to who the suspect should contact West Hennepin Public Safety Department at (763) 479-0500 and ask for investigations.

Loretto approves predatory sex offender ordinance

LORETTO, MN – Add Loretto to the list of cities restricting where level three predatory sex offenders can live.

The Loretto City Council approved an ordinance restricting level three offenders from living within 250 feet of parks, schools, and licensed daycares during Tuesday’s meeting.

“If we had a distance of 500 or 750 feet, it would really be blocking off a lot of the city and make it more subject to challenge,” City Attorney Paula Callies said.

She noted constitutional protections regarding freedom of association and general right to privacy as reasons to not make the ordinance more restrictive.

“You’d be more likely to have a challenge based on discrimination,” Callies said.

Maple Plain has a similar ordinance with a 250-foot buffer, according to Callies.

Medina has a stricter ordinance, with a 2,000-foot buffer, but is a larger city with more residence options for offenders.

Callies addressed the effectiveness of such ordinances.

“There isn’t research showing this type of ordinance is particularly effective in addressing the concerns or threats of predatory offenders because it doesn’t address behavior,” Callies said. “It’s just a distance requirement. Nevertheless, a lot of cities are adopting these.”

In other business, the council directed staff to begin the first round of budget planning with a 5 percent levy increasing, with the notion that the levy cannot be increased but can be decreased after the preliminary budget is set at the September council meeting.

Strong winds blow through Delano

Mario Lucarelli and Tom Vieau work to clean up a 40-year-old pine tree that fell as a result of high winds Tuesday evening. See more in Friday's Delano Herald Journal.

Neighbors Mario Lucarelli and Tom Vieau work to clean up a 40-year-old pine tree that fell as a result of high winds Tuesday evening in the 6800 block of County Line Road. See more in Friday’s Delano Herald Journal.

Kim Lucarelli said she heard what sounded like a freight train before this tree fell around 2:20 a.m.

Kim Lucarelli said she heard what sounded like a freight train before this tree fell around 2:20 a.m. (Photo submitted by Kim Lucarelli.)

Limited services at Delano Motor Vehicle Office July 20-24

DELANO, MN – A statewide motor vehicle technology update will begin Thursday, July 20. Because of this, there will be limited services at motor vehicle offices, including the Delano office July 20-24. The office will not be able to complete transactions such as registration, title transfers, tabs, and plates, but will be open for DNR transactions and limited drivers license transactions. For more information, call (763) 972-0568.