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Tooting our own horn


Fri, Feb 16th, 2001
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Monday, February 19, 2001

It is usually at this time of year, after the groundhogs have seen their shadows and spring seems like an eternity away, that various news organizations hold their annual conferences. This is an opportunity for us newspaper people to take workshop classes and confer with others in the field on the important matters effecting publishing. It is also the time when the news organizations announce their annual contest winners for advertising and editorial excellence.

This event is a nice break from winter and lets us rural folk go to the big-city for a big-city-fix. We usually have a good time.

We were all set to head up to the Minnesota Free Paper Association (MFPA) annual conference two weekends ago, when old man winter reminded us that we just might want to stay at home. So we missed the big event this year.

We had pretty much forgotten about the conference this past week until the UPS man showed up with a good sized box for us. In it were the awards that we received at the conference’s awards dinner.

The Journal won five awards this year:

• Second Place, News Story. Carol Thouin. “Not in my backyard”.

Judge’s comments: Newspapers in smaller towns are sometimes accused of avoiding controversy for fear of shredding the social fabric of the community. Belying that stereotype, the Fillmore County Journal’s Carol Thouin made the front page with this story about an issue pitting neighbor against neighbor in a dispute over a proposed bike trail. Titled “Not in my backyard,” the story dissects an issue that brings the “Not in my back yard” issue close to readers’ homes, both literally and figuratively. Complimented by sidebars examining views of participants on each side of the spat, this was a nice piece of journalism.

• Third Place, Feature Story. Al Mathison. “It all started with White Beaver”.

Judge’s Comments: This history based feature by Mr. Mathison is an entertaining and illuminating “journey” into Lanesboro’s past. In attempting to trace the tenuous roots of Buffalo Bill’s connection to Lanesboro, the reporter has skillfully researched and woven a mix of fact and fancy into a tightly written personal narrative. The story gives readers a new way of looking at a local legend that had assumed its own “truth” for more than a century. Well done.


• First Place. Personal Column. Al Mathison.

Judge’s comments: Mathison’s laid-back, conversational t .....
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Foods Weekly Ads

Fri, Feb 16th, 2001
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Fri, Feb 16th, 2001
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Fri, Feb 16th, 2001
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Fri, Feb 16th, 2001
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Editor’s note: The Journal invited the Houston Board of Education to respond to Ms. Tschumper’s letter.

To the Editor,
In November 2000 the Houston School Board approved a three-year contract for the district superintendent. L ..... 
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Monday, February 19, 2001

Fri, Feb 16th, 2001
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To the Editor,
I felt stunned and dismayed to read in the “Notes from a County Kitchen” column (Feb. 12, 2001) the quip that “A small town is where everybody not only knows which men beat their wives, but also which wives need it.”

N ..... 
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Henry Ulring

Fri, Feb 16th, 2001
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Henry Ulring, 93, of Chatfield, retired manager of the Chatfield Creamery, died Tuesday, January 2, 2001, at Chosen Valley Care Center in Chatfield where he had resided since August 1998.

He was born March 14, 1907, in Webster, MN. On Sept. ..... 
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Lula Vix

Fri, Feb 16th, 2001
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Lula Vix, 88, of Houston, a longtime area farm homemaker, died Sunday, January 28, 2001, at Franciscan-Skemp Medical Center in La Crosse, WI.

Lula A. Ray was born May 6, 1912, in Houston County. She married Lloyd O. Vix in 1930 in Winona, an ..... 
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Luellen VanGundy

Fri, Feb 16th, 2001
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Luellen VanGundy, 95, of Houston, a longtime area farm homemaker, died Tuesday, January 30, 2001, at Valley View Nursing Home in Houston.

Luellen E. Olson was born April 27, 1905, in Ostrander and grew up in the Ostrander and Grand Meadow ar ..... 
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