57 year old Steve Wood of Willmar was in court Tuesday in Willmar on swindling charges.
He’s charged with a half dozen felony counts of theft in an email scheme. He was getting money from non-profits and other types of associations. Willmar Police were contacted by a group from Oregon who’d sent money to him. Police got photo’s of Wood went he was cashing checks, talked to him made an arrest after discovering several suspicious deposits from a number of groups, who reported spoofed emails. Thousands of dollars are involved in the swindle. Woods will be back in court April 16th .

State Representative Dave baker of Willmar and State Senator Andrew Lang of Olivia will be at a town hall meeting Saturday April 13th from 9 am to 10:30 am. The gathering will be at the Cornerstone Coffee Shop in the Skylark Mall in Willmar. An update on what’s happening in the legislature will be given and you’ll be able to ask questions about the legislative session.

2 Ridgewater College female welder’s competed in the First Women in Welding event March 26th at St. Cloud Tech & Community College. Karen Hiniker of Blue Earth and Cassy Neudecker of Winthrop went up against 30 other high school and college women.
Hiniker placed 2nd in the shielded metal arc division. Neudecker competed in the gas metal arc welding division but didn’t place. Ridgewater instructor Jason Eastling says it’s great to see women getting into the profession as there are many positions to be filled and simply not enough good people. He added that it can be a very rewarding career financially.

The Southwest Minnesota Arts Council has awarded grant money to the Granite Falls department of public transformation. $4800.00 will be used to hire a consultant to help equip their staff, board and committees with tools & skills to manage and complete a capital campaign, and another $2500.00 to work toward establishing the first artist-in-residence program. The annual artists retreat this year will be May 3 rd and 4 th in Tyler at the Folk School. Contact the Southwest Minnesota Arts Council to register.

Fishermen traveling to Upper Red Lake for walleye fishing this season again will be able to keep 4 walleye, but with a size change. A new regulation will let anglers keep one walleye over 20 inches in length. You’ll now be able to keep 4 fish under 20” long, or the combination of 3 under 20” and one over 20” according to the DNR. The open water season begins May 11th .

The Minnesota Department of Human Services through the years has donated $8.6 million dollars in Live Well at home grants to help older Minnesotans remain in their home rather than moving to nursing homes or other expensive settings. Recently the Grove City Area Living at home program was awarded $133,707.00 to expand the Cosmos area in-home services, health promotions and social activities.

The Minnesota Dept. of Agriculture has placed Stearns County under an emergency quarantine after emerald ash borers were found in Sauk Centre. Workers for the city noticed several trees that showed signs of damage and collected samples of larvae for confirmation. There is now an emergency quarantine to limit the movement of firewood and ash material out of the County.

The Douglas County Police and Fire Departments were called out to a house on fire at 9790 State Highway 114 SW Wednesday afternoon just before 5:30. Smoke and flames were from the two story home owned by Dave and Linda Tanner. Firemen from Alexandria and Forada got the fire out. There were no injuries and the cause is under investigation.

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