Celeste is a reporter for the Alexandria Echo Press and has lived in the Alexandria Lakes Area since 1997. She first worked for the Echo Press as a reporter from 1999 to 2011, and returned in June 2016 to report on the community she calls home. Besides writing articles for the Echo Press, she has a blog, “Newspaper Girl on the Run.” Celeste is on a continuous healthy living journey and loves to teach bootcamp fitness classes and run. She has participated in more than 200 races with her husband, Al, covering the 5K, 10K, 10-mile and half-marathon (13.1 mile) distances.
- Member for
- 2 years 6 months
DOUGLAS COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE Thursday, Jan. 17 Assist other agency, vehicle in ditch, South Maple Lake Road SW, Highway 29. Assist other agency, report of two kids who got out of a vehicle, asked caller to buy them beer, kids seemed to be intoxicated. Driving complaint, vehicle all over the road, going into oncoming traffic, County Road 12 NW.
The Brandon Evansville School Board — which included the two new members who were elected last November, Jana Anderson and Diane Richter — approved board member salaries at the Monday, Jan. 14 meeting. Board chairman David Anderson, who said he's not on the board for the money, made the recommendation to keep salaries the same. Richter agreed and made the motion to keep school board member salaries the same as they were in 2018. "I'm not here either for the money," she said.
If the Brandon-Evansville School District opted to take care of the immediate deferred maintenance needs for its two facilities, it could cost an estimated $28.2 million. That was the number Lori Christensen and Jason Splett from ICS Consulting, Inc., the firm hired by the district to help assess its facility issues and needs, presented to the school board during a Monday, Jan. 14 work session.
DOUGLAS COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE Tuesday, Jan. 15 Suspicious activity, caller reported car messing around at access for about an hour, checked on, car was stuck in the snow, driver had help on the way, Sugar Sand Lane NW. Assist other agency, male shoplifter, Highway 29 S. Property damage crash, vehicle versus deer, County Road 25 NW, Davidson Trail NW.
As he looked down at the teenager standing just inches away from him with a smile as wide as can be, Earl Melchert told Jasmine Block if she ever needed anything, he would always be there for her. "Even if it's just to talk, I am here for you. I am always here for you, forever," he said to the girl wearing a Batman shirt as they stood outside the Douglas County Courthouse Wednesday afternoon.
Parents in the Brandon-Evansville School District may soon have a new option for before- and after-school child care. The B-E School Board approved the adoption of a day care program on both ends of the school day at its Monday night meeting. Surveys were sent to parents of students in grades K-6, asking if they would be interested in a day care program. Of the 59 responses, 38 said yes while 21 said no, Superintendent Don Peschel told the board.
Shortly after she turned 20, Dawn (Rustand) Crouse saw an ad in the newspaper about a job opening in the county’s recorder office. Out of 50 or so applicants, she was the one who got the job, beginning her career in May 1976 as a deputy recorder and abstractor. Crouse remembers the interview and being asked by the Douglas County recorder at the time, Irene Bundy, “Do you think you’ll stick around?”
The news of Jayme Closs being found alive hit Sarah Block pretty hard, and was eerily all too familiar. The Alexandria woman is the mother of Jasmine Block, who after 29 days, escaped from the three men who kidnapped her and held her hostage in a vacant house in rural Grant County, about 20 miles from Alexandria. That all happened less than a year and a half ago. The story of these two young girls, who were both abducted, held captive and who both bravely escaped their captors, brought tears — lots of tears — to Sarah Block.
DOUGLAS COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE Friday, Jan. 11 Patrol activity, vehicle in the ditch, 3rd Avenue W., Fairgrounds Road. Suspicious vehicle, caller reported snowmobile parked on side of road, no one around, front end is out in the road, Aspen Drive NE, County Road 3 NE. Found property, caller found yellow case for survey equipment at end of his driveway, County Road 8 NW.
Residential customers of ALP Utilities may see a slight increase — or decrease — in their utility bill in 2019. Last month, the Alexandria Board of Public Works approved an overall 1 percent electric rate increase for its customers and an overall 5 percent increase in water rates. The average customer could see a monthly decrease in their energy bill of about $0.25 and an increase in their water bill of less than $1.30, according to Ted Cash, ALP Utilities general manager, and Chris Olson, assistant general manager and finance manager.