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To Africa and back


Fri, Jan 7th, 2005
Posted in Features

Jambo in Swahili means hello and it is pronounced Jumbo. Richard Ostrem, of rural Lanesboro, got very used to saying Jambo to the locals on a recent trip to Kenya.

Richards easy grin suffuses his face and lights up his eyes as he talks about his 22-day trip this fall to Africa to visit his daughter and her family. One senses almost immediately that his enthusiasm is not so much for the fact that he went, but for the fact that hes home. Richard traveled with his brother David and sister-in-law Marlene, of Rochester. They flew from Minneapolis to Amsterdam and then on to Nairobi, both flights about eight hours long. His son-in-law Paul Meints then picked the three up and drove them to Kitale, about 240 miles from Nairobi. It was a two-day trip both ways.

Richards daughter Donna and her family moved to Kitale in August of 2004 to work as missionaries under a five-year commitment. Their daughter Anna stayed in the states and is a student at Mississippi State in Starkville, Miss. Their sons Josiah (17) and Zach (8) are with them in Kenya. They live in a compound at the mission that has two guards and two guard dogs to prevent thievery.

After settling in with Donna and her family, Richard, David and Marlene did some exploring and he thought it was a much better experience than what you would get on a tour. He found the people there very friendly and pleasant. The first person he spoke to was a friendly man and eventually got around to asking for money. As Marlene says, We are rich there. Richard gave the man about 1000 shillings, which equals roughly $12.00. Close to a weeks salary in that area.

The three walked to the market almost every day. Temperatures during the day ranged from 75 to 80 and at night from 55 to 60 degrees. At the market they got to work on their negotiating skills with the locals for hand-made goods. Richard says Marlene likes to dicker. They could usually get something for one-third of the original asking price. He bought a beautiful walking cane, hand carved with African wildlife, for about 400 shillings ($4.80) and a hand-carved foot and a half long shoehorn for about 200 shillings ($1.90). He says he doesnt need the walking cane yet, but someday he might.

He noted that the locals were slim and this is because the farm work is very labor intensive and done solely by hand. There are one-acre farms of maze that last y .....
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Amunrud new county board chairman

Fri, Jan 7th, 2005
Posted in Features

Judge Robert R. Benson swore in newly elected commissioner Stafford Hansen and reelected commissioners Chuck Amunrud and Marc Prestby on Tuesday. Chairman Randy Dahl then nominated Chuck Amunrud to be board chairman for 2005. He was chosen unanimousl ..... 
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The inside story about property taxes

Fri, Jan 7th, 2005
Posted in Features

But in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.  Ben Franklin

The Assessors office is located in the catacombs of the Fillmore County Courthouse, awaiting new digs sometime ..... 
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Lanesboro City Council Report: Council accepts park land gift

Fri, Jan 7th, 2005
Posted in Features

After clarifying some points of the agreement, the Lanesboro City Council graciously accepted Eric Bunges gift of a triangle of land at their regular meeting January 3, 2005. The agreement accepted by the council stipulates that the city may apply f ..... 
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Fillmore County District Court

Fri, Jan 7th, 2005
Posted in Features

Felony Charges

Jesse James Michael Thompson, 26, of Houston, was charged with passing bad checks in Fillmore County District Court on Monday, January 3. According to court documents, Thompson opened a checking account at a loca ..... 
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Preston City Council Report: Council gets a makeover

Fri, Jan 7th, 2005
Posted in Features

Newly elected members gave an altered appearance to the city council on Monday, January 3.. City Administrator Joe Hoffman swore in the new mayor, Kurt Reicks and council-elects Steve Knoepke, Robert Sauer, and Jeremy Aug.

Hoffm ..... 
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2005 Minnesota Legislative Update

Thu, Dec 30th, 2004
Posted in Features

Republican State Senator Robert Kierlin, Republican State Representative Greg Davids and Democratic State Representative Gene Pelowski agree on a lot.  They agree that the upcoming legislative session will be about transporta ..... 
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County moves forward on septic program

Thu, Dec 30th, 2004
Posted in Features

In an effort to improve water quality in Fillmore and Mower counties, especially along the watershed of the South Branch of the Root River, The Clean Water Partnership Project Implementation Loan Agreement was approved. Donna Rasmussen from the Soil ..... 
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Rushford generator issue still undecided

Thu, Dec 30th, 2004
Posted in Features

There is no problem so big it cant be run away from, quoting Lucy Van Pelt of Charlie Brown fame, Rushford Mayor T.S. Roberton explained the delay in making the final decision on the purchase of back-up generator at the December 27 Rushford Counci ..... 
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