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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Comments that Representative Mary Franson, R-Alexandria, made about food stamps on a Friday video sparked a barrage of complaints - even death threats. The backlash was so threatening that Franson, who pulled the video and offered an apology, filed a complaint with the Douglas County Sheriff's Office, which is investigating. Franson made the comments as part of a week-in-review video she posted on YouTube. Here's what she said: "I'll read you this little funny clip that we got from a friend.
The day before Tuesday's big snowstorm hit, a timely topic popped up at the Alexandria City Council: A request for snowplow equipment. "Do you think you could get it hooked up by Wednesday?" joked Alexandria Mayor Dan Ness to Bryan Bjorgaard, public works coordinator. The equipment, which the council voted 5-0 to purchase for $87,478, should come in handy next winter. Bjorgaard requested it to help plow the new streets that came into the city through the "phase four" annexation agreement with Alexandria Township on January 1. The newly annexed area will add 13 to 15 miles of road for the c
Minnesota's new legislative lines are causing new developments on the local political scene. A five-judge panel redrew the lines, which were released last week, to reflect population shifts. In just the last few days, several candidates have announced campaign plans for this fall's election, including: BILL INGBRIGTSEN SENATE DISTRCT 8 Senator Bill Ingebrigtsen, R-Alexandria, announced Friday that he will seek re-election in the new Senate District 8. Ingebrigtsen lives in Alexandria and has represented much of the area since 2006. "While district lines will change, my priorities hav
Senator Bill Ingebrigtsen, R-Alexandria, voted in favor of the Personal Protection Act Thursday. The bill would extend the right to use deadly force for personal protection outside the home to any place where an individual lawfully can be. Ingebrigtsen said the measure was an easy one to support. "When we raise our right hands...to uphold the Constitution, we have to uphold all of the Constitution [and] that includes the right to bear arms." Ingebrigtsen said the act gives the public the opportunity to defend themselves against criminals. The senator said the arguments against the act - t
The 40 or so young people who gathered at Lake Community Church in Alexandria for a 30-hour famine awareness event last weekend were missing more than food. They were missing the bright smile and bubbly personality of their 13-year-old friend, Megan Carlson. Megan died from injuries in a two-vehicle crash that happened on County Road 82 west of Alexandria during a heavy snowfall on February 20. She was a member of the Lake Community Church youth group, Epic, that meets Wednesday nights at 6:30 and is open to all area youth. She had planned to be part of the group's 30-hour famine event tha
Two big projects totaling more than $10 million came before the Alexandria City Council Monday night. Although there were concerns about cost, both projects inched ahead. The council unanimously accepted a feasibility report that examined the cost of extending city waterlines into the newly annexed "phase 4" annexation area of Alexandria Township. The estimated price tag: just over $8 million. City Engineer Tim Schoonhoven described it as a "very, very large" and complicated project that will add nearly 13 miles of water mains. The council set two meetings to discuss the project further -
Two huge projects totaling more than $10 million came before the Alexandria City Council Monday night. Although there were concerns about cost, both projects inched ahead. They include a waterline extention into the "phase 4" annexation area of Alexandria Township; and possible improvements to 50th Avenue. See Wednesday's Echo Press for details about both projects. Also, keep reading the Echo Press for other council topics: honoring resident Steve Pederson for fighting racism; a walk to increase awareness of mental health issues; a second annual duathlon; restroom improvements at Fillmore/
Big things are happening at Bethany. Ecumen, a nonprofit senior housing and services company, is expanding senior living and service offerings in Alexandria. Ecumen Bethany Community recently started a $3 million renovation and expansion project that will improve short-term rehabilitation services and introduce memory care. The project will also expand the short-term rehab dining area and centralize administrative offices on the campus. "We already have an outstanding short-term rehab program, and soon we'll have an enhanced space in which to continue providing the very best services to th
A murder suspect's request to change his plea is delaying the case. Jeffrey Allan Brooks, 52, of Alexandria, was scheduled to be sentenced in Todd County District Court on Monday, February 13. That didn't happen. Instead, a hearing about his motion to withdraw his guilty plea is now set to take place in Todd County District Court on Tuesday, February 28 at 2:30 p.m. Last November, Brooks entered a guilty plea to second-degree murder charges in the death of 51-year-old Diane Fortenberry of Osakis, who was killed on May 20, 2011. However, earlier this month, the case took a twist when Brook
A 54-year-old Benson man was sentenced to five years in prison for setting fire to an antique store in downtown Alexandria. Bernard Michael Drivdahl received the sentence from Judge Ann Carrott in Douglas County District Court on February 15. He pleaded guilty to second-degree arson on October 10, 2011. As part of a plea agreement, other charges were dismissed, including first-degree arson, third-degree burglary and theft. Drivdahl was given credit for the time he's served in jail. The case stems back to October 7, 2010 when the building at 201 6th Avenue East, which housed Off Broadway A