Herald Journal - Enterprise Dispatch - Delano Herald Journal
2009 Year-End Review
January 4, 2010

This week, we look back at the pages of the Delano Herald Journal from January-June 2009. Next week, look for highlights from July-December 2009.


Delano Elementary School (DES) is one of 23 schools in the state to receive the 2008 Minnesota Academic Excellence Foundation (MAEF) School Spotlight Award. The purpose of the award is to identify schools that demonstrate academic excellence and evidence of significant gains in student achievement.

A 2 percent levy increase was approved by the Delano City Council recently, and the city’s tax rate has decreased about 4 percent.

Janet Day of Delano began sewing at the young age of 6 while in 4-H, and admits she hasn’t stopped since. Over the years, Day has continued to enjoy the creative part of sewing and has entered “Make It With Wool” contests about nine times. This year she received first runner-up.

One can feel like a jewel right here, close to home, with a visit to Jewel’s Bridal Boutique, located at 300 Railroad Ave., Suite 100. Owner Stacy Mauch hopes the atmosphere of her store will be a welcome addition to the area.

The Delano Tigers dance team claimed the Wright County Conference championship in the high kick genre.

Fire crews from Loretto, Hamel, Maple Plain, Hanover, and Rockford teamed up Tuesday afternoon to battle a barn fire at 4555 Pioneer Trail in Medina. The Loretto Fire Department initially received the call around 2 p.m., and responded to the blaze at the residence of Andrew and Lisa Hanson. There, the Loretto crew found a red, five-stall horse barn engulfed in flames.

A groundbreaking ceremony was conducted Thursday for the Legacy of Delano, a new assisted living community.

The Cracked Pot is back in the hands of the Watertown-Mayer/Waconia/Delano Royals swimming and diving team.

Dean Barkley will be offering free legal consultations in Delano at Star West Chevrolet-Honda Sports.

Barkley practiced law in Loretto for about 10 years before diving into politics.

Delano Middle School student Tori Hanson placed third in the girls’ 8-9 year old division in the NFL Punt, Pass & Kick national finals.

Newly-elected Delano City Council Member Betsy Stolfa was administered the oath of office at the council meeting.


Sil-Pro in Delano was presented an award for the High Economic Vitality Business of the Year by the Wright County Economic Development Partnership. Sil-Pro specializes in custom molded and extruded silicone parts for the medical industry.

Acoustigreen in Delano was presented an award for the Outstanding Entrepreneur of the Year by the Wright County Economic Development Partnership.

After 33 years on the Loretto City Council, Willie Vetsch’s years of service came to an end.

After two hours of being trapped in neck-high frozen corn inside a grain bin north of Montrose, Herasmo Olivas is finally pulled from the bin through an opening in the roof by members of the Montrose and Buffalo fire departments.

Two weeks before the expected switch from analog to digital television signals, the House voted to delay the transition until June.

Delano wrestlers claimed the Wright County Conference league trophy with a win over Litchfield.

Alex Forster, Miss Delano, visits the St. Paul Winter Carnival.

With talks of a federal economic stimulus package, cities are making their wish lists in hopes they will eventually get to see some of the money from the estimated $800 billion package proposal.

Lauren Vlach is just like many other fifth grade girls who enjoy time with friends and playing with their American Girl Dolls, but unlike many of her classmates, Lauren has taken center stage in St. Paul. Lauren was chosen as the understudy for Helen Keller, a part she is very proud of. As the understudy, she will appear in two performances of the play, and also be available if she is needed to take over for the other young actress playing the part.

Pulling one over on one of the biggest jokesters in town is no easy feat. That being said, John Tackaberry of Star West Chevrolet-Honda was “Punk’d,” as he likes to say, at the Delano Area Chamber of Commerce’s “How the West Was One” celebration at the Delano American Legion. Joe Tipka, the store manager of Coborn’s and a chamber board member, along with the chamber’s president Amy Stewart and Executive Director Jean Kopp, came up with the idea to make it appear as if Coborn’s was receiving the business of the year award, when in reality, the winner was Star West.


As reported recently and discussed at public meetings, phase two of the Minnesota Department of Transportation’s (MnDOT) Highway 12 reconstruction is set to begin Monday, March 9. While the bulk of construction is slated for July through October 2009, railroad construction crews will require periodic road closures starting next week. Railroad construction crews will continue work on replacing the Highway 12 railroad bridge beginning Monday, March 9.

Delano is one of four cities selected to Initiative Foundation leadership program. Delano is eligible to receive an intial grant of up to $10,000 for planning, and then an additional grant of up to $10,000 per year for implementation of community projects.

For 29 years, Mona Eicher has been a devoted teacher at Delano Elementary School. For her dedicated service to the children, parents, and school community, she received the outstanding leadership award from the Education Central Minnesota Services Unit. Nominated by fellow second grade teacher Jan Boghani, Eicher was recognized at a banquet in Princeton Feb. 18, with a plaque and monetary reward.

Though plenty of snow still covers the ground, Jan Johnson of Franklin Township and a group of local residents are thinking spring and gardening. Johnson has been the driving force behind bringing a community garden to Delano, and along with the support of the Big Woods Garden Club, the City of Delano, and other local businesses, forces have been combined to launch the first ever Delano Area Community Garden (DACG) this summer.

Frannie the cat was the first of the Delano True Value residents to relocate from the downtown store. The 14 human employees also moved out of the Bridge Avenue location, but, unlike Frannie, the humans didn’t skipping town. Instead, they moved on up to the east side of Delano into the newly constructed 13,000-square-foot True Value destination store just west of Coborn’s

Cuts are never easy, and the Delano School District is looking at trimming almost $1 million out of its budget over the next three years. The Delano School Board reviewed proposed budget adjustments for next school year at its meeting at the Loretto City Hall last Monday.

Dennis Beise of Delano was honored as the Minnesota Fair Person of the Year.

Jim Quast of Delano and his ice carving team took fifth place at the St. Paul Winter Carnival with their “Ice Fishing” sculpture.

Dalton Sowers ended up on the medal stand at the Class AA state wrestling meet with a sixth-place finish.

In a Franklin Township church back in 1879, a special meeting was held by the Salem Lutheran Congregation to begin planning for a new church in Delano. When they conducted a dedication service for the new building, located at 201 Buffalo Street, it marked the beginning of St. Paul’s United Church of Christ, and this year marks its 130th anniversary.

Fire destroyed the greenhouse portion of Winsome Orchids and Gardens in Independence March 21, according to West Hennepin Public Safety (WHPS).

Students from Delano Middle School and Delano Elementary performed in the play “Frog and Toad.

Judy Crosby and Gwen Kittock were recognized for their many years of service in the Delano-Loretto Area United Way.

Radishes, beets, sweet corn, and home-grown celery – you name it, it’s probably in Gene Barfknecht’s garden. With a garden that is 70 feet wide and about half a block long, he has plenty of produce for cooking, canning, making salsa, and his own special tomato juice.


Broadcast meteorologist Mike Lynch of WCCO Radio will be the grand marshal for this year’s Fourth of July parade in Delano Saturday, July 4.

Life just became a little easier for the Weinzierl family of Delano. Family and friends rallied together in support of the Weinzierls during a benefit at St. Peter’s Catholic Church March 14. The goal was to assist the family in the purchase of a handicap accessible van.

The jewelry and generosity benefit for Betsy Elsen will be at St. Peter’s Church in Delano. Independent is a word that very well could have described the 24-year old Elsen of Delano and how she lived life before cancer entered her world. Though much of Betsy’s future is uncertain at this time, the fact that she is a courageous young woman with extremely caring family and friends is apparent.

Gail Sinkel observes her 25th year of service at the Delano Senior Center.

Delano Middle School has been named as one of the Pennies for Patients 2009 Top 10 Schools in Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota. They raised $6,452.61.

After learning it was never supposed to be there to begin with, the City of Loretto decided to close its brush site.

Delano Elementary School placed second among all participating schools with the money they raised for Change for Kids. DES raised $6,089.

Megan Van Beusekom helped the US Women’s Hockey team win gold at the World Championships in Finland.

Throughout the next four weeks, a small portion of Highway 12 in Delano under the railroad overpass will experience road closures while the railroad replaces the overpass.

Construction began in March, with a brief four-day roadway closure, and pile driving activities have continued since, according to the City of Delano. Beginning today (Monday, April 20), the Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) Railway Company anticipates road closures again as it prepares to replace the bridge.

For the Schoborgs of Delano, surveying has always been a family affair. All seven Schoborg children have worked for Schoborg Land Services Inc., at one time or another, even as young as 8 years old. After surveying part time with his brother-in-law, Paul Schoborg became a full-time land surveyor in 1967.

Delano High School senior Sarah Bingea was one of four Minnesota high school students honored during ceremonies at the boys’ state basketball tournament March 28, with the Minnesota State High School League Academics, Arts and Athletics Award. Bingea’s resumé includes excelling in the classroom, participating in band and choir, playing basketball, volleyball and softball, as well as being involved with her church youth group and mission trips.

The City of Delano is looking for a number of citizens to step up and volunteer to be on the city’s newly-created Citizen Emergency Response Team.


With his love of baseball, and anything with wheels or engines, Will Pogue is like most boys his age with the exception of one thing – cancer. He will be honorary Relay for Life chair this year. In fact, he will be the first child to ever have this honor in Delano.

Lynn Seep joined Light of Christ Lutheran Church and is happy to serve alongside Pastor Lee Hallstrom as associate pastor.

It was a clean sweep for Delano’s two track and field teams at the Wright County Conference triangular.

Authorities in Maple Plain discovered a “mobile meth lab” in a vehicle, according to West Hennepin Public Safety. Two men were taken into custody.

The Delano School Board finalized $388,000 in budget adjustments for the upcoming fiscal year.

Roy and Rosie Spurzem have been organized the Loretto Lion Club blood drive for 20 years and are ready to step down.

The Delano boys’ track and field team saved its best for last when it won the Wright County Conference championship by half a point over Glencoe-Silver Lake.

The City of Loretto will soon be a connecting point between two of the area’s most popular parks, Baker Park and Crow-Hassan Park, with a multi-use trail pedestrian/bicycle trail.

Though they’re not sisters, it wouldn’t be hard to mistake Kassidy Knaus of Delano and her cousin, Casey Carlson of Eden Prairie as not falling far from the same tree. Knaus, a sixth grade student at Delano Middle School, has similar aspirations to those of her cousin Casey, who made it into the top 36 contestants of the hit television series “American Idol 8” this winter. Knaus invited her cousin to speak to her sixth grade classmates at Delano Elementary School April 28 about her experiences on the show.

A routine traffic stop to warn a driver he didn’t have any taillights quickly turned into the recovery of a stolen boat from Delano May 14, according to West Hennepin Public Safety (WHPS).

It’s business as usual for local General Motors dealerships, but it’s a different story for the 1,100 dealers nationwide who received notification May 15 that their franchise agreements won’t be renewed. As for his dealership, Tackaberry said he was always confident that it would remain open.

The chance to “unlock Delano’s treasures” is here, with a large community visioning session planned at the Tiger Activity Center. A group of Delano residents learned at the end of February 2009, their efforts were successful in obtaining a development grant from the Initiative Foundation. Since that time, locally, a Dream Team II board has been formed and includes Brazelton as president, vice president Harlan Lewis, treasurer Betsy Stolfa, secretary Ryan Gueningsman, and members-at-large Carley Boll and Diane Johnson.

Brave, loving, courageous, and funny are all words family and friends use to describe 7-year-old Joe Lang of Loretto, a first grader at Delano Elementary School.

Though Joe is a typical little guy who loves sports and Legos, his life completely changed in one night. Tony rushed his son Joe to North Memorial Hospital while Lori, about seven months pregnant at the time, stayed home with Joe’s 8-year-old sister, Leah. F

rom there Joe was taken by ambulance to Children’s Hospital, where an MRI revealed a mass putting pressure on his spinal cord. Emergency surgery was performed to remove the mass and decompress his spinal cord.


To a packed city council chamber at the Delano City Hall, Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty told those present at the Delano Area Chamber of Commerce Task Force meeting that Delano is doing things right. Pawlenty said he was glad to see the words “Spirit of Community” under the word “Delano” on the city’s logo. “You have a fantastic community. So much of it relates to the goodness of the people here and the fact that you’re willing to say, ‘I’m willing to be involved . . . ’”

Five candidates will be competing for the title of Miss Delano over the Fourth of July Celebration including Amber Shoutz, Bethany Locklear, Devin Weinzierl, Erin Nolan, and Kami Oberaigner.

The Delano Area Educational Foundation (DAEF) announced its yearly grant recipients in April. The grants were made possible through DAEF’s two yearly fundraisers – a trap shoot and a Gala. Delano Elementary School, Delano Middle School, and Delano High School each received grants. For the first time, the Early Childhood Family Education program was also included.

Two 2007 Delano High School graduates lost their lives in separate incidents over the Memorial Day weekend. Paquita Suzanne Ray, 20, of Delano, died after falling from a roof in rural Kellogg the morning of May 25, and Austin John Shimon, 20, of Corcoran, died following a motorcycle accident on Highway 55 May 23.

Father Christopher T. Wenthe has finished unpacking and already feels at home as the new priest for the Delano Catholic Community.

In an update presented to the Loretto Business Group June 4, those present discussed the bid opening and awarding of the contract for the bike path that will connect Baker Park Reserve in Medina, and Crow-Hassan Park Reserve in Hanover, and run through the heart of Loretto.

Two Delano Destination Imagination teams received top honors at the Global Tournament at the University of Tenneessee in Knoxville, TN. WOW seventh and eighth grade team placed first and The Final Moment senior team took second place.

A sister school partnership between Delano Public Schools and Purple Cloud School and Shiyuan Primary School in China developed in 2005. Since then, the schools have exchanged visitors every year. Delano Public Schools have sent students and teachers for 10-day visits each year. For the past two years, a Delano teacher has also been selected for a one-month stay in China.

Standing 6 feet-6 inches tall with a low baritone voice, Marcus Hanson of Delano has a commanding stage presence. Hanson became the 2009 Sing Minnesota Karaoke Champion with the Keith Anderson song he sang.

The year-end review for July-December 2009 will appear in next week’s edition.


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