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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ALEXANDRIA, Minn.—Firefighters face something just as dangerous as flames and smoke. Cancer. The International Association of Firefighters estimates that roughly 60 percent of career firefighters will die from cancer. Firefighters are two to three times more likely to be diagnosed with cancer than the general public. By age 60, twice as many firefighters die from cancer than heart attacks, the biggest killer among most Americans. Volunteer firefighters in Douglas County know all about the risks.
Alexandria is preparing for an invasion. A tiny beetle about a half-inch long could wipe out the most popular kind of tree in the city, ash trees. The emerald ash borer isn’t here yet but it could arrive soon. It’s already made deep inroads in Minnesota. Officials in the Twin Cities area are in the process of cutting down 60,000 beetle-infested trees and another 175,000 in private yards in the metro area are threatened.
The winner of the fifth season of American Idol — Taylor Hicks — rolled into Osakis on Sunday, May 28. His destination: Jacob's Lefse Bakeri. Hicks and a television crew were in town to shoot a segment for his new TV show, "State Plate," that's in its second season on the cable network, INSP. As part of the show, Hicks is traveling throughout the country, sightseeing and tasting symbolic and popular foods from state to state. So far, he's sampled crab cakes in Maryland, peaches in Georgia, chili in Texas and a variety of other dishes.
If you like boats and playing out on the water, Alexandria is the place to be today, Sunday. The first-ever "On the Water Boat Show" — originally scheduled for May 20 — is taking place at Arrowwood Resort today, June 4, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. People are encouraged to take a look at the boats, take one for a drive and maybe even buy one. Five area boat dealers are participating — Central Marine and Sports, Alex Auto and Marine, Ollie's Service, Faction Marine and Minnewaska Marine.
Motorists on Highway 27 and the adjacent Interstate 94 interchange near Alexandria may encounter significant delays and congestion when the resurfacing portion of the Highway 27 project begins Tuesday, June 6. Crews will pave Highway 27 from the east end of the interchange to about one mile west of the interchange, according to the Minnesota Department of Transportation.
Gov. Mark Dayton signed a tax bill Tuesday that will impact Brandon-Evansville's proposed referendum to build a new K-12 school. The law contains a new 40 percent tax credit to help farmers pay for the portion of their property taxes coming from a new or existing school capital improvement levy.
Anderson Funeral Home has been selected as the recipient of the 2017 Business and Industrial Appreciation Day award by the Boards of Directors of the Alexandria Area Economic Development Commission and Alexandria Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce. The Business and Industrial Appreciation Day event has honored a Douglas County company each year since 1984, and is recognized as one of the largest and longest standing annual events of its type in greater Minnesota. Annually, one company from the region is selected as the BIAD recipient based upon the following factors:
Alexandria Light and Power Utilities will have a planned power outage for customers living north of the Carlos-L'Homme Dieu bridge on Tuesday, May 30 beginning at 8:30 a.m. The outage is estimated to last two to four hours. The outage is scheduled in order to convert customers from overhead electrical lines to underground lines.
Former Alexandria resident Lee Urness of Prior Lake — an FBI agent who helped track down a serial killer in 1997 — died Friday, May 19 at age 71. Urness, a 1964 graduate of Alexandria's Jefferson High School, worked as a deputy sheriff and in 1972, he began working at the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension. He served as a special agent with the FBI Fugitive Task Force and was a member of the Minnesota Emergency Response Team or SWAT. His father, Howard Urness, served as Douglas County sheriff from 1959 to 1975.
Liana Lien of Carlos had talked to her brother, Landon, wishing him a happy 19th birthday. When she asked if he had plans, he said he was going carp spearing and hanging out with friends. Liana, knowing that drinking may be involved, told him to have fun but to be safe. He told her, "Don't worry. I'll always be safe." It turned out to be their last conversation. She found out early the next morning, May 24, 2013, that Landon had been killed in a crash.