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Longtime River Falls resident Dana Pruitt introduced a new non-profit concept last spring in which he collects used baby items to recycle, refurbish and/or rebuild then donate to places that need them, such as the local emergency shelter Our Neighbors' Place and the local domestic abuse shelter Turningpoint. In some cases he rebuilds or repairs faulty, old or recalled cribs and other furniture. Other items he disassembles to recycle their parts - be they metal, plastic or usable as replacements.
Governor Scott Walker and the new CEO of Wisconsin's Economic Development Corporation, Reed Hall, traveled around the state this week to announced Hall's recent selection, including a stop at the New Richmond Regional Airport around 4 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 31. The two met and talked with representatives of business and of several area economic development corporations, including New Richmond and Amery; St. Croix, Pierce, Polk and Dunn counties; as well as the cities of New Richmond and Prescott and the regional group Momentum West.
Minnesota Vikings punter Chris Kluwe visited the River Falls Public Library Tuesday, Nov. 20, and spoke to a crowd of about 60 people. He gave a short speech, then took questions from the audience. The NFL player rocketed into the national spotlight after sending -- via online media -- a satirical, extremely critical, and, at times, profanely worded letter to a Maryland legislator.
When faced with the prospect of an aid trip to Moldova, River Falls resident Linda Amundsen thought to herself: "Me, a missionary?!" Yet the story of Moldova and its challenges stuck with her, and she put the issue to prayer. Feeling as though mission work would be fulfilling, Amundsen was soon raising through family and friends the $2,500 needed for travel to eastern Europe. She left July 9 and stayed 20 days, even extending the trip to stay for Moldova's celebration of independence from the Soviet Union in 1991 after the fall of communism.
The next Summer Cruze-In car event 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. July 8 will include a unique car that hasn't been seen in River Falls for at least 20 years -- not since the local artist who painted it, Harvey Probst, died. One of his daughters, local artist Mary Jo Nelson, says many will remember the Green Goddess, a 1960 Buick LeSabre that served as the family car and one of Probst's many canvases.
People who love to drive or watch mechanical beasts pulling heavyweight loads through the dirt can look forward to this week's truck-and-tractor pull in River Falls, Showdown on the Kinni. It begins at 6:30 p.m., Friday, June 15, in the north-end industrial park, nearest to the corner of North Main and Summit streets. Admission for this Chamber of Commerce-hosted event costs $6 for adults and $3 for children aged 3-12. Visitors can enjoy for the evening both a beer garden and a concession stand.
River Falls native David Anderson graduated the local high school in 1975, not sure what direction life would take. It turned toward law enforcement, resulting in a 32-year career and as of April 30, the honor of being named as the 2011 Minnesota State Trooper of the Year. Anderson received the award plaque at an awards lunch, where he says many deserving officers received honors. Peers or supervisors can nominate a trooper for the award then a statewide committee decides the winner. The award comes just in time to recognize Anderson before he retires in September.
First lady of the state Tonette Walker presented a Wisconsin Heroes award to well-known River Falls doctor Bob Johnson at 2:30 p.m. Friday, March 23, as his wife, Mary Conroy-Johnson, and a crowd of his co-workers from the River Falls Medical Clinic and the adjoining hospital, looked on with smiles and hearty applause. Asked if he had been surprised by the award, Johnson said with a grin, "Oh yes." The award presentation remained top secret until just a while before Walker arrived at the clinic in River Falls.
River Falls resident Sara Semi sends out a call for help from others in the region both to find her lost dog and find anyone who might have seen her get hit by a full-sized 18 wheeler about 4:30 a.m. Wednesday, March 14. Semi, who's 7 ½ months pregnant, was driving her boyfriend to work in Hammond, carrying along their small dog, Bubba, in their black two-door Pontiac Sunfire. They were in the "slow" lane on the right going about 60 mph, even commenting on the big truck riding in the "fast" lane on the left but driving about the same speed they were.
A group of about a dozen artists in River Falls named themselves the Alley Exhibitionists and would expose themselves publicly and regularly. They bared their artistic souls inside and outside of 114 E. Elm St., now the Calypso Salon. The group re-unites for a month-long show in River Falls, Feb. 10-29, at Gallery 120 (120 N. Main St.). Everyone is welcome to the opening event 4-8 p.m. Friday, Feb. 10, where most of the Alley Exhibitionists will gather, greet and show original works at the reunion show themed 'Lost and Found.' They'll continue the celebration that same evening 8-11 p.m.