This Week in 1986, 35 years ago: A computerized mail sorter installed at Fingerhut in Alexandria has enabled the sorting of 135,000 pieces of mail per hour and required the hiring of 35 additional employees.
1971, 50 years ago: Students expecting to attend kindergarten next fall must be age 5 on or before Sept. 1 according to Robert Jones, administrative assistant to District 206 Superintendent Arthur Hafdal. The Sept. 1 line has been established by the State of Minnesota and will apply to all school districts this fall. Students who did not attend kindergarten and will be entering first grade must be 6 on or before Sept. 1
Around noon on Wednesday afternoon, an anonymous caller told Alexandria police that “a friend of mine put a bomb in the school and I thought you should know about it.” Jefferson High School was immediately evacuated and students were sent across the parking lot to the Technical School while buses came to haul them home. In 45 minutes, most of the buses had come and gone and the only people remaining were law officials, including the Minnesota Highway Patrol, Douglas County Sheriff and Alexandria Police. When the bomb expert arrived the building was searched and later in the evening was declared safe for student occupancy the next morning.
1996, 25 years ago: Arrowwood, a Radisson Resort on Lake Darling, Alexandria, has been named a 1995 Greater Minneapolis Chamber of Commerce Quality of Life Award recipient. Arrowwood received one of six awards for its environmental efforts in 1995 which consisted of three phases: water conservation, water preservation and recycling.
A tanker truck carrying 8,500 gallons of gasoline rolled over on County Road 102, just before the stop sign on County Road 114, which leads east into Miltona. The accident happened after the truck had been diverted onto the road because of a two-vehicle accident on Hwy 29 North. The driver of the 1995 International tanker truck applied the brakes on the icy road as he approached the stop sign and the rear part of the truck slid into the ditch, causing the rest of the truck to topple over.
2011, 10 years ago: A total of 38 employers from throughout the region participated in the Greater Alexandria Area Job Resource Fair held at the Alexandria Technical and Community College and sponsored by the Lakes Area Business and Employer Council. The event provided an opportunity to link job seekers with current and future openings at businesses throughout the region.
Douglas County commissioners gave the go ahead to County Park Superintendent Al Leiffort to apply for five grants that would expand or enhance several county parks. One of the projects that could be funded by grants is a tournament quality horseshoe court at Deputy Curtis A. Felt Memorial Park located along County Road 42, across from the Alexandria Golf Club.
Just for fun 1996 – 25 years ago: Rich Zuel, former Alexandria Chamber of Commerce president, welcomed the new president at the annual chamber banquet. The 1996 president, JoEllen Doebbert, is an Alexandria attorney. The Chamber’s executive director is Mac Bryant, and the Economic Development Commission liaison is Chris Gilchrist.
Sports trivia 2011 – 10 years ago: The organizers of this year’s Alexandria Ice Fishing Challenge switched the location from Lake L’Homme Dieu to Lake Agnes to steer traffic to downtown businesses and catch bigger fish. Instead, the committee and nearly 2,200 anglers and 400 spectators and volunteers were trying to figure out how not a single fish was brought through the ice during the tournament.
Rachel Barduson of Alexandria is a regular contributing columnist to the Echo Press Opinion page.