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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River Falls once again honored Memorial Day with the annual parade along Main and Division Streets running from the American Legion Hall to Greenwood Cemetery where the annual Memorial Day program was held. Though rain fell during the program, attendees were prepared with raincoats and umbrellas. Following the program a luncheon was held at Legion All by the legion auxiliary.
When it formed in 1976, the local chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) didn't have a charter. With no internet, and no access to funds to support their research proving each member was a direct descendant of someone involved in the Revolutionary War, the members started their group without an official charter, due to cost, according to a news release. Recently, the present members realized their group, the St. Croix-Chequamegon Chapter didn't have an official charter.
Many people brought items to River Falls' Spring Cleanup event May 8-13. But town of Martell resident Dana Pruitt had a different mission. He was at the cleanup every day to pick up items. Pruitt collects used cribs to fix up and donate to people in need. It all started about five years ago. Pruitt had heard from We Do Feet in Hudson, which collects and distributes furniture for people in need, that they weren't able to take cribs that weren't up to code. "They can't fix them," he said. "So I've been, since then, fixing cribs up for them."
The River Falls City Council recently moved forward with several items that stemmed from the city's Capital Improvement Plan (CIP). Tuesday, May 9 the city approved working with Emergency Services Consulting International (ESCI) for a study on the city's emergency medical service (EMS) department. The study will review current operations and provide recommendations for future planning. Assistant City Administrator Julie Bergstrom said this is part of the CIP.
According to 4-year-old Amelia Neuhaus, it’s “a far walk” to “our pond.” That is the pond she and her dad Max Neuhaus have “adopted” through the city’s Adopt-A-Pond program. The stormwater pond is located off the River Hills development, between River Hills Bluff and the Kinnickinnic River. Max and Amelia said they make the “far walk” to the stormwater pond twice a year for cleaning.
Back home in Japan, Momoka Ito has been learning English for years. She said that's split into four areas of focus: reading, writing, speaking and American culture. "I love American culture," Ito said. That, she said, is why she decided to do an exchange trip to the United States. Ito said her family at home, including mom Yoshiko, dad Toyokazu, and 10-year-old Hiroto love American culture too. The year abroad has been a good one, Ito said. So far her favorite memory is a trip to Chicago she took with her host family.
River Falls will honor police officers who have died in the line of duty, and recognize the contributions of officers in St. Croix, Pierce and Pepin Counties at the River Valley Law Enforcement Officer Memorial Ceremony. The ceremony is set for 6 p.m. Tuesday, May 16, at River Falls High School, 818 Cemetery Road. Refreshments will be served after the ceremony.
Rocks are everywhere, small, large, grey, brown, earth colors. Most rocks blend into their surroundings, and are given little thought. But soon, River Falls residents may see a blue, yellow, or multicolored rock hiding somewhere around town. The rocks are part of the Kindness Rocks program starting up at Rocky Branch Elementary. "In times where we seem to be divided ever more," said Rocky Branch Principal Chuck Eaton. "This is a type of project that brings people together and inspires hope."
A group of Meyer Middle School students lent a helping "paw" to UW-River Falls students in ADEPT (Assistance Dog Educational Program and Training), formerly known as the Service Dog Training Program during a Paw-A-Thon fundraiser Saturday, May 6 at Hoffman Park. The kids are part of the middle school Lego League robotics team. One of the requirements for the competition they in which they competed was to do a project that helped the community in some way related to the year's theme, said coach Jeremy Odegard. This year's theme was "animal allies."
River Falls firefighters, EMS and police were called to an area near the intersection of Cascade Avenue and Highway 65 for reports of a semi on fire not long before 9:50 p.m. Wednesday, May 10. AT ablut 10 p.m. Smoke coukd be seen coming from the semi, from across Cascade Avenue. No flames appeared visible at that time. River Falls Police closed the intersection of Cascade and Highway 65 during the incident. More information will be added to this report as it becomes available