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Morken, Bosek honored at Viking Sportsmen's banquet

Eric Morken (left) stands beside Viking Sportsmen board member Dean Krebs (center) and Viking Sportsmen President Gene Sullivan (right) after being awarded the first Friend of Viking Sportsmen Award. (Contributed)

Eric Morken, the Echo Press' Sports and Outdoors Editor, was the recipient of the first-ever Friend of Viking Sportsmen Award. He was presented with the award at the annual Viking Sportsmen banquet on Thursday, April 5.

The award honors a community member who exhibits a passion and dedication for the outdoors.

"We chose Eric for this award because of his passion and desire to elevate sports and the outdoors," said Dean Krebs, Viking Sportsmen board member. "His writing simply energizes local outdoors fans. We truly believe he has made a significant difference to the conservation community by his willingness to share his knowledge and experience."

Morken credits the Alexandria community for being a conducive environment for outdoor enthusiasts.

"I am grateful to live and write in a community full of people who value the outdoors like many people do here in the Alexandria area," Morken said. "I really appreciate getting this honor from the Viking Sportsmen and especially appreciate all the work they and other outdoor groups in Douglas County do for hunting and fishing at a time when that fundraising and advocacy is so important for the future of the outdoors."

Bosek also honored

Alexandria's Arlene Bosek devoted her time to a lot of causes in Douglas County during her life and one of those near to her heart was her involvement in the local Viking Sportsmen group.

At the annual banquet, Bosek was posthumously honored as the Art Engelbrecht Conservationist of the Year Award winner. Bosek died in a car crash on Aug. 5 when her vehicle rolled on County Road 82 east of Brandon.

Among Bosek's contributions to the club was her leadership in organizing the annual Senior Fishing Day on Lake Darling. This outing every summer for the last 30-plus years brought together volunteers with their pontoons to take out seniors and military veterans for an afternoon of fishing and boating before they were served a fish meal that same evening. Last year's event served almost 300 people at the supper.

Members of Bosek's family were on hand at the Viking Sportsmen banquet to accept the Art Engelbrecht Conservationist Award in Arlene's honor.

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According to its website, Viking Sportsmen, Inc. is an organization of over 300 concerned conservationists. Members include sportsmen and women, both non-residents and native Minnesotans. Viking Sportsmen, Inc. is a nonprofit organization that returns nearly 100 percent of each dollar raised back to field conservation efforts.

Beth Leipholtz

Beth is a reporter at the Echo Press. She graduated from the College of Saint Benedict in May 2015 with a degree in Communication and Hispanic Studies. Journalism has always been her passion, but she also enjoys blogging and graphic design. In her spare time, she's most likely at Crossfit or at home with her boyfriend and three dogs.

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