Weekly Safety Report: House Fire and Theft Impact Sleepy Eye and New Ulm
This week in Sleepy Eye, Minnesota, two incidents occurred that impacted the safety of the community. Firstly, a house fire displaced a family of five due to excessive smoke damage. The fire started in the basement and the cause is still under investigation. Secondly, a former employee of the New Ulm Public Utilities Commission was charged with theft after stealing items from the PUC building. The stolen items included a safe containing documents and invoices related to the utilities commission. The suspect was traced through his PUC access card.
ZEMPELS HONORD AS BROWN COUNTY OUTSTANDING CONSERVATIONISTS
The Brown Soil and Water Conservation District has named Gene and Lori Zempel as the 2023 Outstanding Conservationist in Brown County. The Zempels live northeast of Morgan in what they refer to as the “Garden of Eden.” They maintain one CREP easement and several CRP easements in addition to many conservation focused projects including native pollinator plantings, a water control structure, a recreational pond with surrounding native wetland species. A press release says the Zempels have committed their entire life to conservation. Gene is a lifetime Pheasants Forever member and Lori has used “Master Gardener” techniques to grow, harvest, preserve and freeze their various garden crop for 30 years.
Today the gas price is close to $2.99 in Gibbon as of 2023-12-02. Find the available station near you.
Photo from Unsplash and unrelated to the city. For most people, it is a constant necessity of life to manage gas prices. The national average price for a gallon of regular-grade gas on Saturday is $3.247, a week ago the price is $3.259 , according to AAA.
FORMER NEW ULM PUC EMPLOYEE CHARGED WITH THEFT
A former employee of the New Ulm Public Utilities Commission is accused of stealing a number of items from the PUC building over the Thanksgiving weekend. 43-year-old Garrett Loudermilk of St. James is accused of theft after Olmsted County deputies discovered a safe connected to New Ulm Public Utilities was along a road. Court documents say New Ulm Police were notified Saturday of the safe, which contained documents and invoices related to New Ulm Public Utilities. Loudermilk was traced to the burglaries through his PUC access card. Among the stolen items was a 2013 GMC Savanna van, a 2016 Ford F350, Dodge Ram 1500, a Kubota tractor, boat motors and numerous electronic devices. Loudermilk told authorities that he was planning to take a boat motor to Iowa to trade it for two jet skis and a stolen PUC truck was parked in Hanska near the grain elevator and the stolen van was in Darfur. Charges were filed in Brown County District Court Tuesday. Loudermilk is facing felony second-degree burglary – use of force and felony third-degree burglary charges. Bail was set at $100,000 without conditions, $20,000 with. A hearing was set for Tuesday morning, December 12.
Tiffany Jane Mudder
Tiffany Jane Mudder, age 37, passed away unexpectedly on November 19th, 2023 at Fairview U of M Hospital in Minneapolis, MN. Tiffany was born September 16th, 1986 in St. Louis Park, MN. Her family moved to Fairfax, MN in 1991 where she attended school for many years and made wonderful friends. Tiffany was never much for small towns and found herself within the metro area shortly after she turned 18 years old. She lived in Brooklyn Center at the time of her passing.
AREA HOLIDAY CELEBRATIONS
A couple of area communities will be in the Holiday spirit Saturday and beyond. Arlington is having their Arli-Dazzle Celebration all day with activities including Santa Day at Sibley East High School, adult and kid scavenger hunts, a Dash Through the Snow 5K starting at 11, the Schell’s Hobo Christmas Quartet, sled dogs and much more. Santa will arrive on a real train at 5:20 and will take part in the Arli-Dazzle parade, probably the largest lighted parade in Minnesota. Fireworks will precede the parade at 5:30 pm. We’ll have several broadcasts throughout the day from Arlington. Sanborn will celebrate Memories of a Hometown Christmas which will start at 10 with rolls and coffee and Zion’s Christmas for Kids at the Sanborn Community Center. There will be fire truck rides, kids games, Santa and Mrs. Claus will be at the Santa House starting at 1:30 and a Portrait of an Angel contest will be at the community center. This is children’s photos age 0 to 2.
Springfield recruits emergency crew members
MANKATO, Minn. (KEYC) - The city of Springfield is looking to fill various medical response positions. Ambulance Driver, EMR, EMT and paramedic are all in demand in the city, and recruitment efforts are ramping up as COVID-era employment requirements EXPIRE at the end of this year. That’s prompted city officials...
THREE ROCHESTER AREA MEN ACCUSED IN PUC BURGLARY
Three Rochester area men are now accused of being involved in the theft of several vehicles, a boat motor and other devices from New Ulm Public Utilities over the Thanksgiving weekend. 55-year-old Jeff Anthony Ward and 36-year-old Morgan Wolf of Wykoff and 32-year-old Phillip Kocer of Rochester all face charges ranging from aiding and abetting burglary and theft and felony receiving stolen property. Former Public Utilities employee Garrett Loudermilk was charged in Brown County District Court Tuesday with felony second-degree burglary use of force and felony third-degree burglary. He is out on bail. Court documents say an Olmsted County Sheriff’s Deputy found a safe connected to the city of New Ulm found on the side of a road. Loudermilk told authorities he was going to take the boat motor to Iowa to trade it for two jet skis. A search of his residence found a truckload full of items. Wolf was arrested in Watonwan County on drug charges. Stolen items were found in his vehicle. Ward and Kocer were involved in help to steal a Kubota tractor. Wolf has a court appearance this (Friday) afternoon at 3:45. Ward and Kocer have appearances scheduled for Tuesday, December 12 as does Loudermilk who is out on bail. Loudermilk was an employee at the PUC and used his access card to gain entry into the building.
Revitalizing Community Spirit: The Transformation of Brownton Area Civic Center
In the heart of Brownton, Minnesota, the transformation of the Brownton Area Civic Center has become a symbol of the community's dedication to enhancing civic life. Spearheaded by visionary community leaders, the project took an underutilized former school building and reimagined it as a vibrant multi-generational hub. The city's commitment, bolstered by $400,000 in pledges, funded a series of renovations that included a new entry, improved gymnasium and auditorium, and the relocation of the library and city offices. This revitalization has turned the Civic Center into a cultural and social nexus, preserving Brownton's history while propelling it toward a connected future.
The murders of 4 men.
It is a well known fact that LGBTQ folks face increased violence and victimization just for being who we are. This fact is unfortunately one that definitely applies locally. I have spent the last several years researching the murders of gay men in the local area. These men are Henry...
new ulm, MN Residents: Your Future Cats Best Friend Awaits!
Interested in adding a furry friend to your family? Even if you're just keen on viewing some of the cute critters available for adoption nearby, there are ample pets waiting for their forever homes in animal shelters throughout and around new ulm.
Buffalo Lake, Minnesota: Preserving Heritage Amidst Agricultural Growth and Environmental Challenges
Buffalo Lake, Minnesota, a city with deep historical roots dating back to its official platting in 1881, has long been a centerpiece of community life in Renville County. Its identity, intertwined with a nearby body of water sharing its name, has been a constant through the city's demographic ebbs and flows. Despite recent population decreases, Buffalo Lake preserves its historical essence, reflecting the resilience of small American towns.
Another Successful Renville Co Sheriff’s Office Food Drive!
Olivia, MN: Last week, the Renville County Sheriff’s Office completed their 2nd Annual Sheriff’s Office Food Drive, which supports the Renville County Food Shelf. The Sheriff’s Office coordinates the event with each of the elementary schools in Renville County as well as several churches from throughout the county.
Renville County crimes involving methamphetamine around children up dramatically
Minnesota law specifically criminalizes the possession or creation of methamphetamine around children and vulnerable adults. And yet, according to Renville County Attorney Kelsie Kingstrom, in the past two weeks her office has charged out six individuals with possessing methamphetamine around children. Kingstrom stated that in one case her office charged...
The Bank open for events
There is a new place to hold events in Gibbon as Whit Wort Brewing Co. recently opened The Bank. The facility is located adjacent to the brewery and was purchased around the same time that the brewery opened. The Bank held its first event a couple of months ago. Owner...
Redwood County Court News for Nov. 20 – 26, 2023
Tara Rose Batson, Wabasso: petty misdemeanor hands-free law – access video content / images / games / software applications, fees and fines $135. Christopher Robert Dreier, Granite Falls: petty misdemeanor speed 60 zone 70/60, fees and fines $125. Veronica Gasca Ramirez, Renville: misdemeanor expired registration, fees and fines $115.
Man charged with April vandalism spree targeting St. Peter churches, school
He damaged windows and vehicles using a golf club, charges say.
Adding purpose, color to retirement
Hector woman re-discovers love for art, shares it with her granddaughter. Never say never. It’s never too late. Never give up on your dreams. Follow your heart. These are a few well-known phrases that capture the spirit of Julie Schweiss of Hector, a recently rekindled artist and lifelong lover of painting. This hobby, however, comes with a somewhat unexpected and much deeper benefit that is sure to last for decades.
Sports Extra: Winter Week 1 Recap of Sleepy Eye St Mary's Knights, cbii Indians, and Minnesota State's Victories
Catch all the action from the first winter week of Sports Extra! Witness the Sleepy Eye St Mary's Knights' victory over the Tracy Milloy Ballon Panthers, the Cbii Indians' thrilling win against the Murray County Central Rebels, and MSU's perfect season start in college men's basketball.
GFW School Board sees update school project plan
Two representatives from Wold Architects & Engineers of St. Paul and a representative from Kraus-Anderson of Minneapolis attended the November GFW School Board meeting on November 20th to review the detail drawings of the design of the building. The school, to be located on the East edge of Gibbon, is scheduled to open in August of 2025. Bids will be sent out following the January 16 meeting, to be opened prior to the February board meeting.