Al Edenloff is the news and opinion page editor for the Echo Press. He was born in Alexandria and lived most of his childhood in Parkers Prairie. He graduated with honors from Moorhead State University with a degree in mass communications, print journalism. He interned at the Echo Press in the summer of 1983 and was hired a year later as a sports reporter. He also worked as a news reporter/photographer. Al is a four-time winner of the Minnesota Newspaper Association's Herman Roe Award, which honors excellence in editorial writing.
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A project to extend 44th Avenue has hit a dead end. At its meeting Monday, the Alexandria City Council was informed that the city's application for a grant through the Minnesota Department of Transportation was denied. Last October, the city applied for a state grant to extend 44th Avenue by about 1,855 feet, from where it ends northeast of Doolittles Woodfire Grill to a new connection with South Broadway.
The Minnesota State Patrol has made several large marijuana busts in recent weeks — including one on Interstate 94 near Alexandria when the odd behavior of a driver and passenger of a car caught a trooper's attention. On Jan. 24, a trooper stopped a rental vehicle near Alexandria with a police dog leading to the discovery of 24 pounds of marijuana and $8,200. Two New Jersey men face felony charges in the case. According to the criminal complaint:
The heavy snowfall overnight is causing schools in the area to be running late this morning, Friday. In the Douglas County area, the following schools are running two hours late -- Alexandria, Brandon-Evansville, Minnewaska, Osakis and West Central Area. As of 5:45 a.m., more than 100 schools in Minnesota were reporting delays. Douglas County remains under a winter weather advisory until 6 a.m. today.
A project to build 28 market-rate townhomes and a 56-unit apartment complex will come before the Alexandria City Council Monday night. Tom and Joan Wenzel's planned unit development east of County Road 45 on the north side of Latoka Drive SW (County Road 90) was recommended for approval by the Alexandria Planning Commission on Tuesday night. The property consists of 45 acres and 26.5 acres are proposed to be developed as part of the planned unit development. The site is currently zoned for business but non-single family developments are allowed with a conditional use permit.
When World War II veteran Don Leland of Alexandria went on an Honor Flight to see veteran memorials in Washington, D.C. in 2010, the experience left him with memories he'll always cherish. "I thought it was was tremendous — the nicest thing that ever happened to me, really," he said. On Monday night, Leland did his part to help other veterans make the trip. He was among 36 card players in "Cribbage for a Cause" — a first-ever fundraiser to support the WDAY Honor Flight.
If you rent out your private home or lake cabin for short-term stays, listen up. Or if you live next to someone who frequently rents their property to loud tenants who trespass onto your land and cause other problems, take heed. The rules may soon change. The Douglas County Planning and Advisory Committee will hold a public hearing Feb. 27 about proposed amendments to multiple sections of its lodging ordinance.
Motorists on Highway 28/Minnesota Avenue East in Glenwood will experience a lane closure of the westbound lane between First Street NE and Highway 29/Franklin Street due to a break in a city water main. Crews will further assess the situation and additional repairs may begin Friday. Motorists should slow down, be prepared for slippery conditions and eliminate distractions, according to the Minnesota Department of Transportation.
A request to approve a tobacco license drew debate at Monday night's Alexandria City Council meeting. King Tobacco applied for the license for a second store it plans to open at 307 North Nokomis Street, Suite 106, the site of the old Premier Video store. King Tobacco's existing facility near Walmart recently completed serving a 20-day suspension for failing multiple compliance checks for underage sales. Some council members were not happy about the company's track record.
The Alexandria City Council is trying to solve a problem that has long been a concern in downtown Alexandria — no public restrooms. At its Monday meeting, the council agreed to call for bids to build restrooms at Big Ole Central Park. They would be placed near the corner of Second Avenue East and Broadway, just to the west of the entrance to the parking lot. This will allow easy access for visitors who park in the parking lot, walk from downtown or come off the Central Lakes Trail, according to Bill Thoennes, parks and facilities director.
A proposed splash pad in Alexandria has a home. At its meeting Monday night, the Alexandria City Council agreed to splash pad organizers' request to put the facility in Dean Melton-Fillmore Park. A splash pad is a play area that offers water fountains, geysers or sprays that people of all ages can use to cool off in the summer. Sauk Centre recently added one and there are splash pads in Sartell, Waite Park, Sauk Rapids and three in St. Cloud.