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Making Henning a little greener

For as long as he can remember Matt Goeden has wanted to own a greenhouse.
Between a love of flowers, and a desire to eat fresh vegetables more frequently, Goeden began searching for a way to construct a greenhouse on his property on the northeast side of Henning. As it turns out, constructing and heating a greenhouse through a Minnesota winter can be expensive, which led Goeden to venturing into a new business venture.
“I always wanted a greenhouse and decided I needed a couple of bucks to pay for it,” said Goeden. “I have a shop on the edge of town and thought what can I do with it.”
In order to establish a greenhouse, Goeden received help from a number of people in the industry who took him under their wing.
“When you have folks around to mentor you and call non stop when you need anything it makes it a lot more manageable,” he said.
Last year Goeden operated a small 15x30 foot greenhouse at his shop on the edge of town. Following the success and response from customers last year, Goeden began constructing a larger 25x80 foot greenhouse in the back of his shop. The new greenhouse will feature over 500 hanging baskets, 3,000 container plants, 6,000 vegetables and plenty of time to strike up a conversation with the greenhouse owner.  read entire story. . . .

Staffing shortage leads to reduced fitness center hours

A staffing shortage will mean less hours for the Henning Fitness Center in the near future.
During its regularly scheduled meeting on Tuesday night, the Henning School Board heard that the district has been unable to find individuals to fill all of the time slots available for the fitness center. As a result, the district will close the facility two afternoons a week, while remaining open all five mornings.
Henning School Superintendent Jeremy Olson said he hoped the decision to close the fitness center a couple of days a week was temporary, but without people to fill the time slots the district was left with no alternative. Olson said the job has been posted, and while there has been interest in filling some of the time slots, others have been left vacant.
Though the district could leave the weight room unsupervised as long as someone is in the building, several board members expressed a concern over not having a person in the room due to the free weights available for use. By having someone in the room they would be available to help in the event of an emergency.
Several board members also asked if the stipulation of having CPR certification limited the potential list of applicants.
Olson said he is open to ideas as how to fill the position, or time slots at the fitness center moving forward, and will try to seek a person to fill the time slots without CPR certification. In addition, Olson agreed with the board that he would rather have a supervisor in the room, as opposed to having it be unsupervised or closed.
“I think it is very sad we are losing that, I really do,” said Olson. “My converse to that is what do we do.”
The district will now advertise for the position without the CPR certification. The district will also reach out to individuals who use the facility on a regular basis to see if they would volunteer for shifts while they are working out. Currently, Olson said he is looking for someone to fill the Wednesday and Thursday afternoon shifts. The weight room will remain open in the morning five days a week, and Monday, Tuesday and Friday afternoons.
In addition to the weight room the board approved contract extensions for Olson, Williams and non-certified staff.  read entire story. . . .

County board, area lawmakers meet at capitol

Roadway maintenance funding and others issues were discussed Tuesday, April 19, when the five members of the Otter Tail County Board of Commissioners met with area legislators at the state capitol in St. Paul.
“Our goal was to discuss proposed bills and legislation that could  affect the residents of Otter Tail County,” said Commission Chairman Lee Rogness of Fergus Falls.
Also meeting  with State Sen. Bill Ingebrigtsen and State Reps. Bud Nornes and Mary Franson were County Commissioners Wayne Johnson of Pelican Rapids, Doug Huebsch of Perham, Roger Froemming of Parkers Prairie and John Lindquist f Dalton.
“We continue to stress to lawmakers that we’re doing our part to come up with more needed funding for roadway maintenance,” said  Rogness. “Now it’s up to the state legislature to do its part.”
Maintaining the many miles of roadways in Otter Tail County is a multi-million-dollar effort on an annual basis.
“We not only levy county taxpayers for highway repair dollars annually,” said  Rogness, “but starting this year we’re collecting roadway funds through a half-cent sales tax and through a $10 fee when people renew their vehicle licenses.”
All of this, from the county’s end, may still not be enough for roadway maintenance, said commissioners to area legislators.  read entire story. . . .

County declares April 24-30 as Distraction-Free Driving Week

The Otter Tail County Board of Commissioners, in coordination with the County Safe Communities Coalition, has proclaimed April 24-30 as Distraction-Free Driving Week.
“We need to convince all drivers in Otter Tail County of the need to devote their full attention and energy to driving,” said County Board Chairman Lee Rogness.
“Drivers need to avoid distractions such as cell phone calls, text messaging, adjusting music controls, eating and drinking and reaching for items in vehicles.”
The Otter Tail County Safe Communities Coalition  helps raise awareness of the dangers of distracted  drivers, particularly among teenagers.
The county board wholeheartedly agrees with the goals of the coalition.
As noted by the other four county commissioners (Wayne Johnson,  Doug Huebsch, Roger Froemming and John Lindquist), distracted driving or inattentive driving is a factor in one of four crashes in Minnesota.
The State Office of Traffic Safety emphasizes that distracted driving leads to close to 70 deaths and 350 serious injuries on an annual basis in Minnesota.  read entire story. . . .

Henning CHAT hosts bike rodeo

Approximately 30 children stopped by Henning School on Thursday night for the annual bike rodeo. The event was sponsored by Henning CHAT and included volunteers checking over bikes for safety, checking for proper fitting of bike helmets, going over road safety (pictured) and a bike ride. The event also included snacks and refreshments for all of those who attended.  read entire story. . . .