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Tue
26
Sep

Forest Service planning to drop lottery system in 2018

The U.S. Forest Service plans to do away with a permit lottery system that has been in place for many years. After the 2018 season, lottery permits will become first come, first serve, creating a mad rush for BWCA users.
Lottery permits are only in place for the entry points with the highest demand. This includes the very popular day use motor entry permits at Fall Lake and Moose Lake to get to Basswood Lake. A lottery system is also used for overnight paddle and motor permits through Fall Lake and Moose Lake. The five entry points are listed as D, F, G, 24 and 25.
“People were submitting several applications for the same date to be sure they got one,” said Forest Supervisor Connie Cummins. “This way without the lottery you can make a reservation on a given date and if it’s not available you’ll know it right then rather than trying to get one through the lottery.”

Tue
26
Sep

Joint Powers cool to rec center

by Tom Coombe
Leaders of Ely area government entities aren’t sold on plans for a new community recreation complex.
Brief discussion at a Sept. 14 meeting of local leaders revealed caution, skepticism and some outright opposition to the plan to develop a facility that could be as large as 50,000 square feet and cost as much as $12 million.
No formal action was taken at the meeting of the Ely Area Community Economic Development Joint Powers Board, but at times discussion mirrored ongoing talks by Ely school officials, who are weighing a request to support locating the facility on the west side of the district campus.
Joint Powers members charged there remain too many unanswered questions, including the source of construction and operating revenues and what, if any, impact the project would have on local taxpayers.

Mon
25
Sep

Home, sweet home for Ely -

by Tom Coombe
The road trips come to a halt for one week as Ely’s cross country teams get the chance to run in familiar territory.
It’s Homecoming Week to boot as the Timberwolves play host to several schools from across the region for Tuesday’s Ely Invitational, set for 4 p.m. at the golf course.
The only home meet on the Ely schedule could bring as many as 200 runners to town. It includes a junior high race and separate five-kilometer boys and girls varsity events, and comes on the heels of strong outings for both teams.
Earlier this week, the Ely girls were second and the boys finished fourth at the Paul Brauer Invitational, held at the Grand Rapids Sports Complex.
Depth fueled the girls’ runner-up showing among nine teams.
Ely trailed only Mesabi East, with senior Ryne Prigge the Wolves’ top individual finisher.
She took fourth in the girls event and finished the five-kilometer course in 20:58.9.

Mon
25
Sep

Wolf population increases with rise in deer density

Results from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources’ 2016-1017 wolf population survey suggest Minnesota’s wolf population has increased 25 percent since the 2015-2016 survey.

After remaining stable during the past four years, the survey estimates that within Minnesota’s wolf range there were approximately 500 wolf packs and 2,856 wolves. The survey’s margin of error is about plus or minus 500 wolves. The 2015-2016 survey estimated the number of packs at 439 and the wolf population at 2,278.

Minnesota’s wolf population remains well above the state’s minimum goal of at least 1,600 wolves and also above the federal recovery goal of 1,251 to 1,400. The DNR has consistently managed wolf populations at levels that exceed both state and federal minimums.

Mon
25
Sep

Carol A. Blair, 79, of Ely, dies

Carol Ann Blair, 80, born on October 5, 1937, to Peter and Mary (Terzini) Preblich, passed away on Monday, September 25, 2017, at the Boundary Waters Care Center.
After staying home to raise her children, Carol returned to the workforce at Pizza Hut for many years. She enjoyed the outdoors, her dog Toby, spending time with her grandchildren, and reading.
Survivors include her husband Carl; daughter Cindy (David) Dahl of Duluth; son Bryon (Jamie) Blair of Hastings; and grandchildren Miranda, Alexandra, and Jacob; sister Donna (Ralph) Karlinski of Centerville; and several nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her parents and brothers Frank Eugene and Peter; sister Rose Marie Ahlfs, and brotherin-law Darrol Ahlfs.
A memorial service will be held Friday, October 6, 1 p.m., at Kerntz Funeral. Family arrangements have been entrusted to Kerntz Funeral Home of Ely.

Mon
25
Sep

If you had a million dollars, would you spend it on faster internet?

Faster internet can be just a pipe dream for people who live outside the Ely city limits. Speeds as slow as dial-up are all too common meaning services like Netflix and Hulu are not even a possibility.
Pointing fingers at Frontier and Midcontinent for not better servicing Ely’s rural areas has not led to any solutions. There were high hopes for Lake Connections to fill the gap, but that system is in turmoil right now.
So, we’re back to local governments stepping in to provide the infrastructure needed. If you’re a local taxpayer, be it in a city or township, should your elected officials spend tax dollars on bringing faster internet to your house?
Increasingly that answer is becoming: yes.
Even a township supervisor said he was tired of snail’s pace internet that he was making a leap of faith in hopes that Lake Connections could hook him up.

Sun
24
Sep

Arsenic and Old Lace to bring comedy to Ely

Arsenic and Old Lace cast photo from rehearsal includes, front, l-r: Marcia Homer, Mary Ann Pauling, second row: Sara Skelton, Peter Kess, Andrea Strom, Mary Kay Fortier Spalding, Lis McCrea, Vince O’Connor, back: Dave O’Donnell, George Spalding, Karin Schmidt. Absent were: Jim Beaty, Cindy Dieter, Ricardo Smith. Performances are Sept. 30 and Oct. 1 in Ely. Submitted photo

Sat
23
Sep

Ely Marathon 2017 winners announced - unofficial as yet

While festivities continue in Ely tonight with live music in Whiteside Park, the Ely Marathon Races have ended.

Unofficial results: Boundary Waters Bank Half Marathon winner is LISA SMITH, 35, from Hibbing, MN in 1:26.50, first out of 234 finishers.

The half marathon men's division unofficial winner is Michael Eden.

The unofficial winner of the half marathon portage division Daniel Drehmel with an approximate time of 2:20.

Unofficial results: Ely marathon winner is HUDSON KINGSTON,34, from St. Paul, MN in 2:59.01. First out of 79 finishers.

Fri
22
Sep

Pick-six foils Ironmen on road

by Tom Coombe -

Fri
22
Sep

Study on broadband needs up next

The program at the September 20 Rotary Club meeting featured speakers looking into the past and into the future. Erik Simula (left) spoke to the club about the Minnesota Canoe Museum, the evolving efforts to capture our canoe history, and Jack Maytum of Design Nine told about his work through a Blandin Foundation grant regarding better internet service to Ely.

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