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FAIRWAY VIEW SENIOR COMMUNITIES GROUND BREAKING CEREMONY was held on Tuesday, June 9. The ground breaking was the culmination of many work hours from numerous entities. Shown above, left to right, are Brent Hasslen-President of Hasslen Construction, Steve Berkner-Ortonville Mayor, Rick Moore-AIA, ACHA-Principal Horty Elving, Bill Thyne-President of Frandsen Bank & Trust of Clinton, Becky Parker-President Ortonville EDA, Michelle Knutson-Trustee OAHS Health Care Board and Building Committee, Dr. Al Ross-Vice Chairman OAHS Health Care Board, Mike Dorry-Trustee OAHS Health Care Board and Building Committee Chair and Rick Ash-OAHS CEO.

Ground breaking held for new Fairway View Facility

A ground breaking ceremony was held on Tuesday, June 9 at Fairway View Senior Communities. A large crowd was on hand to witness this occasion for Ortonville and the surrounding communities.

OAHS CEO Rick Ash started the ceremony by thanking all those responsible for making this new facility possible. Others who spoke at the ground breaking were Ronald Thomas, Chairman of the OAHS Health Care Board and Becky Parker, President of the Ortonville Economic Development.

The Continuing Care Retirement Community (CCRC) will be done in two phases. The first phase will focus on the construction of the catered living apartment complex and the connection to the existing Fairway View; this phase is expected to be complete December of 2015. The project will be completed with construction of the town center and skilled nursing facility during phase two, with expectation to be finished December of 2016.

This new facility will connect with the existing Fairway View Senior Community.

With work already being done at the new site, those involved with the process put a shovel in the ground to make it official.

“This is a great day for OAHS, Fairway View, Ortonville and the surrounding communities,” commented Ash. “Thank you to everyone who made this new facility possible.”

State Patrol investigates two vehicle accident near Clinton

The Minnesota State Patrol investigated a two vehicle accident on Highway 75 near Clinton at approximately 3:55 p.m. on Wednesday, June 10.

According to the report, a 2003 International 9400 driven by Lee Ashburn, 33, of Willmar rearended a 1996 Ford Dump Truck driven by Gary Haugen, 57 of Clinton. Both vehicles were traveling on Highway 75 at the time of accident.

Ashburn was flown to Essentia Hospital in Fargo, ND where he was treated for non-life threatening injuries. Haugen was transported by ambulance to the Ortonville Hospital where he was treated for non-life threatening injuries.

The 2003 International 9400 was totaled according to the Minnesota State Patrol, while the 1996 Ford Dump Truck received minor damages. Both were towed to The Shop in Big Stone City, SD.

Assisting the Minnesota State Patrol at the scene were the Big Stone County Sheriff’s Department, Clinton Fire Department, Graceville Ambulance and the Ortonville Ambulance.

Electro fish monitoring held at Meadowbrook Creek

Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) staff have been in Big Stone County doing biological and macroinvertebrate monitoring through the Upper Minnesota River Water Districts WRAPS (Watershed Restoration and Protection Strategy) Cycle.

Dan Fettig of the MPCA and Quinn Skalka, who is a summer intern from the University of Michigan were busy at Meadowbrook Creek on Thursday, June 11 where they were electro-fish monitoring.

This is the eighth year of a 10-year effort to assess the condition of rivers, streams, and lakes in Minnesota. This work is being funded by the Clean Water Fund from the constitutional amendment passed by voters in 2008.

Crews will monitor more than 100 stream sites and seven lake sites in the Lac qui Parle River and Minnesota River Headwaters watersheds. These are composed primarily of Big Stone, Lac qui Parle, Lincoln, and Yellow Medicine counties.

The primary goals of the MPCA’s water monitoring is to:

• determine if stream water quality supports wildlife living in the streams (aquatic life).

• determine if stream water quality supports swimming, wading, and boating (aquatic recreation).

• determine if water quality is sufficient to eat fish caught in streams and rivers (aquatic consumption).

• measure and compare regional differences in water quality.

• identify long-term trends in water quality.

On this particular day, Quinn put on the 60 pound back pack to electro-fish the stream. The back pack has the capacity of 200 volts which stuns the fish in the stream long enough for them to net and examine. In Meadowbrook Creek, they were able to catch nearly nine species of fish ranging from a green sunfish, bullheads and creek chubs.

“Normally when we electro fish, we very seldom come up empty with fish,” said Fettig. “People are surprised when we do creeks such as Meadowbrook that we are able to come up with fish. They seem to find their way in there.”

By 2006, only a small percentage of Minnesota's streams and rivers had been monitored for basic water quality. The MPCA decided it needed to examine more waterbodies at a faster rate, and developed what it calls the watershed approach.

The MPCA uses a 10-year cycle of intensively monitoring an average of eight watersheds a year. This monitoring includes lake water chemistry, and stream water chemistry and biological communities, such as fish and aquatic macroinvertebrate communities. The resulting data help determine if water bodies meet the standards for public health, recreation and aquatic life. This watershed approach allows the agency to examine more water bodies at a faster rate, by sampling near the outlets of watersheds of varying size (HUC 14, 12, 8 ) within the major watershed instead of sampling the entire watershed from its headwaters to its outlet. The first 10-year watershed monitoring cycle began in 2008 and will end in 2017.

After assessing water quality data and determining if waters support aquatic life, recreation and consumption uses, the MPCA publishes its findings in detailed watershed reports and submits a draft list of impaired water bodies to the EPA.

Seth Parker
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