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Ely’s Slovenian Union of America’s 90th anniversary celebrated

Miro Medved, Honorary Consul of Republic of Slovenia, presenting a proclamation from Slovenia celebrating Ely’s Slovenian Union of America’s 90th anniversary. Receiving the proclamation at the Grand Ely Lodge Sunday Sept 17 was Ely’s SUA Chapter 23 President Pat Koski. The proclamation was in Slovenian with an English translation. About 30 people attended including guests from Slovenia, Biwabik, Gilbert and many from Ely.


Angeline Mary Andrew, 88, of St. Paul, formerly of Ely, dies

Angeline Mary Andrew, 88, of St. Paul, formerly of Ely, died Thursday, September 14, 2017 at Northfield Hospital in Northfield, MN.
Angeline was born August 11, 1929 in Bovey, MN to George and Julia (Adlesich) Velcheff Sr. She was a graduate of Ely High School. She worked as a Job Service Coordinator for the State of Minnesota for many years in Ely and later in St. Paul. On February 14, 1998 she married William Andrew and resided in Temple, TX. After William passed, she moved back to St. Paul.
She was a member of St. Louis King of France Church in St. Paul. She enjoyed helping others, spending time with her friends and Velcheff family barbecues. Golfing, working crossword puzzles and listening to polka music were some of her favorite pass times.
Survivors include her sister, Helen Grivette of Hoyt Lakes and numerous nieces and nephews.


Kenneth Charles Starkman, 90, dies

Kenneth Charles Starkman, 88, died peacefully on Tuesday September 19, 2017 at Southview Senior Living Center in West St. Paul, MN.
Ken was born in Ely, MN to Charles and Lillian “Aiti” (Rajamaki) Starkman on October 23, 1928.
He married Alice (Keeling) Starkman on February 15, 1958 in St. Paul, MN.
Ken was a past owner of The Chain Saw Shop, Starkman Oil and the Tamarack Resort on Burntside Lake all located in Ely as well as Starky’s Convenience Store in Babbit, MN.
He served in the U.S. Army during the Korean Conflict and was a member of the Masons, Shriners and the American Legion.
Ken enjoyed hunting and fishing and had a passion for all things horse racing. He spent many hours in his retirement handicapping thoroughbreds.
Ken is survived by his wife Alice Starkman, sons: Ken Starkman and Jeff (Jessica) Starkman, sisters: Laverne Kuzma and Karen (Rich) Jiacik and grandsons: Hunter Starkman and Garrett Starkman.


Warren E. Esterberg, age 68 of Greenfield, MN, dies

Warren E. Esterberg, age 68 of Greenfield, MN passed away Monday, September 18, 2017. Warren was born and raised in Ely, MN and received his BME from the U of M. Preceded in death by parents, Werner and Aune. Survived by Laura, his wife of 45 years; 3 sons, Erin (Niki), Erik (Megan) and Adrian; grandchildren, Emma, Tyler, Blake, Zaya, Tanner and Lainey; brothers, Warner, Allen, Everett, Norman, Larry and Dean; many other loving family members and friends.
Memorial Service 11 am Saturday at Beautiful Savior Lutheran Church, 5005 Northwest Blvd., Plymouth. Visitation 1 hour prior to service at church. Continue to celebrate Warren’s life with family and friends at the Medina Ballroom from 2-6 pm Saturday. Interment Ely Cemetery at a later date.
Gearty-Delmore Plymouth Chapel, 763-553-141, www.gearty-delmore.com


School plan modified before rollout

by Tom Coombe
It took several months and a series of meetings to develop a proposed strategic plan for the Ely School District.
But at least for now, the district will wait to take the plan public.
Goals set by a 20-member committee have been condensed, and superintendent Kevin Abrahamson has developed objectives and action items related to each goal.
The committee, minus many of its members, gathered Monday with consultant Ralph Brauer to review the work and talk about the next steps in a process that started midway through the 2016-17 school year.
There was brief discussion this week of a public rollout, perhaps during parent-teacher conferences next month, but several committee members said more remains to be done - including internal discussions with school staff and perhaps further development of specifics.
Elementary principal Anne Oelke said she “would want to be very confident,” about the plan before the district moves forward.


Ely school tax levy could go down again

by Tom Coombe -


Marathon ready to start

September 22 and 23 will bring a surge of runners and spectators to the Ely area for the third annual Ely Marathon.
Dubbed the 8,390 portage, the race is a beautiful and challenging run along the edge of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness.
The Ely Marathon starts on the North Arm of Burnt-side Lake at Camp Du Nord at 7:30 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 23.
It turns onto the historic Echo Trail, meandering past several lakes before heading on a downhill coast toward Shagawa Lake.
From there it takes a slight detour through charismatic Winton followed by a quick loop around Miner’s Lake before the final run down Ely’s main street to finish in Whiteside Park. The Ely Marathon is a Boston Qualifier, making it one of the top prestigious races in the nation.
The marathon events will include a number of street closures, both Friday night and Saturday. See the back page of this section for more information on detours.


Local taxpayers shouldn’t always have to pick up the tab

Sitting on the edge of a national wilderness, local taxpayers are all too well aware of having to pick up the tab. Two issues are currently in play, the push to exchange state land inside the BWCA for federal land, and, the loss of tax base when islands and other areas outside the BWCA are removed from the tax roles.
Our position on the BWCA land exchange is straightforward. An apple for an apple. Just as the federal law says, the state lands can be exchanged, not sold, for federal lands. Seems simple but the same people who are against seemingly everything are opposing this as well.
They want the feds to buy out the state land. Several problems with this scenario, number one being there is no pot of gold to make that happen. And, the state of Minnesota has been losing money for over 50 years by those lands not generating income. A sale will not create an ongoing revenue stream, it’s a once and done, and a fleecing of the taxpayers.


Hook and Bullet Club by Nick Wognum - Moose mama

Trail cameras can provide a look at the woods most people may never see. That includes me. Throughout the fall I try to spend nearly every weekend in the woods, usually out at our hunting shack. But I miss more than I see.
Over the years I’ve been able to acquire some trail cameras that can be strapped to a tree and take pictures when movement is sensed. Not that many years ago the cameras used film but today it’s all digital. I don’t have any cameras that can take pictures and send them to my cell phone but last year I added one that can capture video and sound.
The camera I put out furthest from the shack is the toughest to get to. After a very bumpy ride, there’s a rough trail down to a beaver dam and then along a dam to one of the few trees still standing.
Since it’s tough to get to, that camera doesn’t get checked too often. As long as the batteries are good, it will continue to take pictures.


DNR opens public comment period on draft PolyMet dam safety and public waters work permits

The Department of Natural Resources is seeking comments, from Sept. 15 through Oct. 16, on two draft dam safety permits and a draft public waters work permit for the Poly Met Mining, Inc. (PolyMet) NorthMet mining project. The permits relate to a proposed copper-nickel mine near Hoyt Lakes in northeastern Minnesota.

This is the public’s opportunity to submit written comments on these draft permits.

One draft dam safety permit covers the proposed flotation tailings basin, which would receive tailings (a mixture of finely ground waste rock and water) after the commercially recoverable copper, nickel and other elements are removed. This proposed tailings basin would be on the site of the existing tailings basin of the historic LTV iron ore mine.


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