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Summer has come. It didn’t just walk in but instead strutted in and kicked the door down. Stifling heat, excessive rain and flooding hit us like a gut punch. So now fishing in a boat is more like being broiled on a grill over hot coals. Rains have washed out roads, taken lives and resurrecte…

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This letter is to continue the conversation about race and racism. What I’ve come to understand is that systemic racism is about the lived experience of Black and Brown Americans. We can only really understand this experience if we learn about it from the people themselves. I’ve been blessed…

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I wouldn’t generally consider myself to have had a white trash upbringing, although I was born in a trailer court. 

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If you believe the weather forecast, it looks like we will be in for another scorcher this weekend. Temperatures are slated to climb into the mid to upper 90s, with high humidity.

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Huge numbers of white people have been out in the streets with black people in an unprecedented show of solidarity, but how long will white people really be engaged with the life or death issues facing black people, and will we do more than just march? 

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The Stower Seven Lakes State Trail is very valuable to me and anyone else who wants an easy place to recreate outside. I use it often. I drive to the Stower Seven Lakes State Trail to avoid walking/biking on the township roads where one must be on high alert for cars/ATVs driving too fast or…

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The best season of the year is back--backyard BBQ season. Who doesn’t love cooking in flip-flops with an ice-cold drink in your hand? Outdoor cooking on the grill is easy and the unique flavors created by grilling are hard to beat.

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If you are reading this column I am guessing you like the outdoor life and all the benefits we pick up along the way like fish dinners, creamed pheasant, smoked duck and fresh apples off the tree. Planting apple trees is something I always wanted to do and after about 6 years of messing up I…

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I agree with Mr. Wellumson and Mr.Randelin. It is easier to pretend that racism is a “them” problem instead of an “us” problem. It is easier to sit back, crack a cold one, and tune out the legitimate concerns of those around me. 

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Page 3 of the June 24 edition of the Sun included a record of the “Special Event Proceedings.”  This special event was a tour of the North 40 mine which is operating on the site of the former Rybak sand and gravel mine, just south of the Osceola Village limits.  

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We are nearing Independence Day, the traditional midpoint of summer. Saturday marks the 244th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence, a day traditionally filled with families, food, fun and fireworks.

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Strawberries are in season and adults and kids alike love them. Picking your own is fun and nothing tastes better than local fresh picked. Bring the whole family for a fun activity.

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I am responding to articles published in The Sun during the past few weeks, which I believe is filled with misinformation.  The individual from Osceola who pines about the lack of benefits black GI’s were denied after World War II.  I agree this is injustice, but this happened 75 years ago.  

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We have officially moved into summer fishing. The spawn is mostly over around here. We did manage to take a bunch of beautiful bull bluegills the other day and we released some big females with a few eggs in their swollen bellies. There are other indicators it’s summer. Fireflies are lightin…

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 My heart goes out to African-Americans across this country. It is not for the reasons Alana Cuellar expressed in her recent letter to The Sun. Yes, historically there had been a horrible ‘systemic inequity.’ That letter was titled, ‘Rage is a rational response to oppression.’ How can rage e…

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On Sunday, June 28, members of the St Croix Valley Christian Community Choir are going to be gathering at Millpond Park in Osceola at 6:30 p.m. to sing. 

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Gene Hill has a story in his ‘Hunter’s Fireside Book’ about rain. 

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Full disclosure: I’ll admit I’m an older white guy and because of my life experiences have precious little to offer in the discourse underway about racial equality. Like many of you, I am trying to make sense of the changing times and adapt while remaining true to who I am.

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The first time I had deep-fried cheese curds was in 8th grade. A friend was obsessed with them and it was all she talked about.  We went to the Minnesota State Fair together. I remember it well because it was the first time my mother let me go by myself. The first thing we did when we arrive…

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For the last 30+ years I have attended family gatherings with loved ones who are black.  

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I’ve always admired tough guys. 

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Sunday is Father’s Day, a time to remember and honor the paterfamilias, father, the head of the household, Pop, Dad -- whatever his moniker at your house—Sunday is the day to pause and appreciate his contributions to who you are as a person.

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Many of you do not know much about me. You probably know I live in a small town in Wisconsin, I have four kids, and I really like food. 

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“If you want to catch walleyes there is only one thing you need to know,” said Ben Elfelt of Shafer, Minn.  His tongue-in-cheek reply was, “Where the walleyes are.” In this second search for the perfect boat, I talked to Elfelt, Polk County Park and Trails Coordinator, successful walleye gui…

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I hope you are enjoying summer and some respite from the cares of coronavirus and the national uproar for social justice after the death of George Floyd last month in Minneapolis.

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For some people it’s the magic of the water that attracts them. It could be the grandeur of the surroundings or chasing fish in a motorboat. For others it’s about exploring quiet waters with a paddle in your hand. I’ve always loved the quiet sports, simple non-motorized activities that don’t…

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Reading the news following the murder of George Floyd is heartbreaking. The devastating images of burning buildings lead many to ask, “Isn’t looting just making a bad situation worse?”

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The yellowed index cards my mother wrote her favorite recipes on are my most cherished possessions. The ones with more spots and faded words--they were her favorites. They don’t have any value to anyone else. The recipes themselves aren’t anything extraordinary or inventive. They’re simple r…

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It’s Memorial Day weekend and the middle of morel mushroom season. I grew up in a family of hunter-gatherers. I think it all started with my dad, Earl McClay Bennett, who moved to Wisconsin in 1949 with 6 of 7 kids in tow. I was the last kid, born a week before Christmas 1950.

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The Wilberg Memorial Public Library is committed to the safety of our staff, patrons, and community as a whole.  For this reason, the library will remain closed to the public until at least June 15.  Library staff will use this time to carefully and collaboratively plan for a gradual and mod…

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I wasted most of the day last Thursday. 

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The two big Tom turkeys were gobbling up a storm. Big Gobbler One from the hill behind me south a hundred yards gobbled when another gobbler suddenly answered back 100 yards to my north with a challenging call. It was like I was in the middle of a YouTube video. They were hot and I was excit…

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Last December I found the house of my dreams, on Osceola’s Ridge Road. I’d come to know and love the Osceola and East Farmington area, especially the St. Croix River bluffs and the Standing Cedars Land Conservancy trails, since buying a small farm in Osceola Township in 1987. The proximity t…

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It’s graduation season. The school year is coming to a formal close and even though this year has been far from normal, the rites of passage are once again upon us.