Phil Pfuehler has been editor of the River Falls Journal since 1991.
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Superintendent Tom Westerhaus has picked Rita Humbert, principal of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic School in Hastings, Minn., to be acting principal at Westside Elementary School for the 2010-11 year. The school board votes Monday night on the Humbert recommendation.
Hunter Squire discovered the newest lake in River Falls Wednesday morning, Aug. 11, following torrential overnight rains that dumped more than four inches. Hunter's mom, Monique, spotted the stormwater runoff that had filled the drainage bowl at Hoffman Park. She thought Hunter would enjoy the lake-filled basin. So he slipped into his swim trunks, waded in, swam a couple of "laps" before standing by the partly submerged soccer goal net while mom snapped his picture. She said it was the "perfect outing for a 10-year-old boy." Hunter's father is John.
School district officials have proposed an overall tax levy increase of just under 2% to help finance the 2010-11 school year budget. School district residents can vote yes or no on the new $18,075,561 tax levy at the 8 p.m. Monday, Aug. 16, Annual Meeting in the high school library.
The latest summer storm of 2010 brought 3.87 inches of rain to River Falls overnight into Wednesday. Other areas of Pierce and St. Croix County got 4-5 inches. At 7 a.m. Wednesday, six hours after the deluge had moved on, the Hoffman Park drain basin was so filled from water runoff it looked like a new city lake had formed. In Pierce County, Hwy. 63 north of Hwy. 29 was expected to be closed all day Wednesday due to flooding, according to the Pierce County Sheriff's Department. Hwy. 10 at County Road A was also closed due to rising water. Hwy. 29 west of Hwy.
Like his town of Clifton neighbor Rob Chambers, retired Dayton's cabinet maker Steve Cochrane has rescued stranded Kinnickinnic River travelers. Those rescued, he says, were either unprepared, ill equipped or both. "In the last few years there have been multiple rescues by the Pierce County Sheriff's office, with other units and a helicopter," he said.
River Falls police officers chased a local 27-year-old man who appeared to be masturbating by the EconoFoods recycling bins last Tuesday around 1:30 a.m. The suspect took off and ran down the slope to Lake George through tangled underbrush. There he hid. This occurred after 1:30 a.m. last Tuesday. A Pierce County sheriff's deputy and his dog were summoned. The suspect finally agreed to give up, but he wanted a blanket first to cover himself because he was without pants. The officers' response: No, first come out with your hands up.
Huge numbers were flashing before the arrival of Farm Technology Days July 20-22. Visitors to River Falls were predicted to range from 60,000 to 100,000. One forecast was for a $2.8-million stimulus to the local economy. While a downpour canceled most of Day Three of FTD, a Journal survey found that many local merchants got anything from a mild boost in sales to nothing. Reaction from Main Street merchants ranged from ho-hum to frustration. Val Lundgren, Karma Gifts owner: "I hate to complain, but to tell you the truth, it made my business worse.
A two-vehicle pileup in the town of River Falls at 12:45 p.m. Wednesday, July 28, resulted in both drivers getting hurt: Charles Delbert Hamilton, 79, and Mitchell Eggen, 16. Both live in the River Falls area. Hamilton was pulling out of 862nd Street onto Hwy. 29 when he was struck by a westbound truck driven by Eggen. River Falls ambulance crews took both from the scene to the hospital with undetermined injuries. The crash is still under investigation. Pierce County Sheriff's deputies were assisted at the scene by River Falls firefighters.
Two middle-aged River Falls women were taken to jail in the past week for allegedly threatening their male partners with knives. One is even accused of tossing bleach at the male victim's face. One incident occurred in the 700 block of West Cedar Street, the other in the 1500 block of South Wasson Lane. In both cases the men were unharmed, but one man, who had been lying on the couch, said he had to fight off the woman to protect himself.
To most people, he's simply "Jimi Dee." Travel with the guy, be it in Chicago, Florida, Arizona, and someone, somewhere will pop up and greet him. Jimi Dee Hansen has long been a fixture in River Falls. He moved here from St. Paul in 1960 as a fourth grader and grew up on a town of Kinnickinnic pig/beef and dairy farm. Earlier this month Jimi Dee joined his 1969 River Falls High School graduating class for a reunion -- with the likes of St.