Author: CJ Baumgartner

Minnesota Department of Health Reports Multiple Days of Single-Digit Deaths From COVID-19

ST. PAUL, Minn.– Minnesota health experts gave an update Monday on COVID-19 in the state. They also included information on the state seeing lower death numbers in recent weeks. Minnesota has seen single digit deaths in 13 of the last 15 days. Health officials attribute this to new treatment options, a higher number of young people getting COVID-19 who recover,…

Naked Man Found After 24 Hours in Downtown Duluth Sewer

DULUTH, Minn.– The naked man who decided to take a dip into the sewer system in downtown Duluth yesterday was located Thursday night. A passerby heard him yelling for help around five under a manhole by the Wells Fargo building. Yesterday, multiple agencies were searching for the man on Michigan Street by the Duluth Transit Center downtown. His clothes were…

Fitger’s Brewhouse and Burrito Union Will Now Require Masks Starting Friday

DULUTH, Minn.– As the Duluth City Council prepares to vote on an ordinance later this month requiring masks be worn in all public places, one Duluth restaurant owner isn’t waiting to mask up his staff and customers. Starting this weekend, two well-known Duluth restaurants are going to be taking an additional step to keep customers healthy. “We don’t want to…

Lake Avenue Restaurant and Bar Voluntarily Closes After Staff Member Tests Positive for COVID-19

DULUTH, Minn.– Lake Avenue Restaurant and Bar in Duluth announced Wednesday they are voluntarily closing, explaining that staff has been exposed to a person with COVID-19. It’s also located in Canal Park, where the popular tourist destination has been seeing bigger crowds over the last few weeks. After a number of bars and restaurants in Superior closed yesterday due to…

John Magas Begins Role as Duluth Superintendent

DULUTH, Minn.– Today is the first day on the job for new Duluth Superintendent John Magas, who was named to the position in March. Magas has been spending the past few weeks transitioning virtually as the 30th superintendent in the district’s history. He says his long term goals include forming strategic plans on the district’s boundaries and finances. But Magas…

Duluth Authorities Search for Suspected Naked Man in Sewers

DULUTH, Minn.– A suspected naked man led authorities on a search effort in the downtown Duluth sewer system Wednesday. The Duluth Fire Department got the call for help at 12:17 p.m. about a man who reportedly was crawling into a sewer near the DTA Transit Center at 3rd Avenue West. Multiple agencies responded, looking through pipes and manholes. A remote…

Multiple Bars Voluntarily Close After Customers Test Positive for COVID-19

SUPERIOR, Wis.– At least five bars in Superior, South Superior and South Range have voluntarily shut their doors for the time being after getting notified they’ve each had a customer in their establishment recently who has tested positive COVID-19. The bar closures come as the health department recorded 30 positive cases in Douglas County since the pandemic began. Log Cabin…

St. Louis County Gives COVID-19 Update

DULUTH, Minn.– There are now more than 150 cases in St. Louis County. After seeing a decline around late may, county officials are a slight uptick in cases. Officials say they are still preparing for a surge in cases and working with healthcare systems, long term and congregate care facilities, and Minnesota Health Department to put a plan in place…

State of Minnesota Gives Out Over 600,000 COVID-19 Tests

ST. PAUL, Minn.– In late May, Minnesota Governor Walz announced a partnership with two of the state’s top healthcare providers to help increase COVID-19 testing capacity. The ambitious partnership including the University of Minnesota, the Mayo Clinic, and the state announced that they have tested over 600,000 people after ramping up their efforts in late May. “This puts us in…

Duluth Receives Over $6.5 Million From CARES Act

DULTUH, Minn.– The city of Duluth is eligible for more than $6.5 million in aid from the federal CARES Act after Minnesota Governor Tim Walz signed an executive order allowing cities to receive that funding. Duluth’s share of the money can only be used to cover COVID-19 expenses like PPE, hand sanitizer, technology equipment, and overtime for police officers whose…

City Of Duluth Pushes For Early Voting During Pandemic

DULUTH, Minn.– The city of Duluth is encouraging alternative ways to vote during the pandemic as the early voting period for state primaries and other local elections opens Friday. The city says to avoid long lines and prolonged contact while people try to vote on Election Day, they can come into city hall starting tomorrow to vote or by mail-in…

City of Duluth Introduces New City Attorney

DULUTH, Minn.– Duluth Mayor Emily Larson introduced the city of Duluth’s newest attorney, who she says will bring a unique perspective to the position. Rebecca St. George was introduced during the city’s weekly presser earlier today. She has spent over six years as an attorney for the Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa. Some of St. George’s other…

Indigenous Leaders Discuss COVID-19 Impact, CARES Act Funding

Leaders from Minnesota’s Indigenous communities are discussing the impact of COVID-19 on their communities. It happened at a virtual gathering today along with state and federal leaders. Senator Tina Smith and Lieutenant Governor Peggy Flanagan held a virtual roundtable with leaders from Indigenous tribes around the state to discuss COVID-19’s impact and problems they are having with the CARES Act….

First “Yappy Hour” of Summer Begins

DULUTH, Minn.– For the first time this year, Duluth residents and their dogs could enjoy a night out together. Yappy Hour was held for the first time this summer. The store A Place for Fido teamed up with The Boat Launch to host the event on the restaurant’s outdoor patio at Fitger’s in downtown Duluth. The event had dog-themed drinks…

Mayor Larson Gives Update on City Budget

DULUTH, Minn.– Duluth Mayor Emily Larson says most of the city’s COVID-19 budget shortfalls projections from April are in their predicted range right now. Larson and her team made headlines when they said the city could see a budget shortfall of $20-40 million for 2020. And with two additional months of data, the predicted loss of revenue is now around…

Duluth City Council Halts Measure to Remove Chief Title

DULUTH, Minn.– The Duluth City Council tabled a resolution Monday night that halts Mayor Emily Larson’s push to remove the word “chief” from employee titles after she and her administration said it is offensive to Indigenous people. The vote specifically involved changing the title of Chief Administrative Officer to City Administrator. A unanimous vote by the council is required because…

Red Cross Blood Drives Begin Antibody Testing

DULUTH, Minn.– The Northland American Red Cross has launched a summer-long campaign to test blood donations for COVID-19 antibodies. The series of blood drives around the Twin Ports began today at the Duluth Red Cross. Reservations were full, with more than 30 people coming in to donate blood that will be sent to St. Paul to be tested for the…

Grand Opening for New King of Creams Location

HERMANTOWN, Minn.– One popular restaurant in Duluth is adding a second location up in Hermantown. The King of Creams opened their second location in Hermantown earlier this week. And there is a grand opening on Saturday. While COVID-19 did delay the opening of the new spot, management at the restaurant says they are excited to be open again and to…

Minnesota Lays Out School Reopening Plan

DULUTH, Minn.– K-12 schools in Minnesota wrapped up their distance learning for the spring. But there still is uncertainty about what schools should do in the fall amid the pandemic. Thursday, the Minnesota Department of Health and the Department of Education have started laying out initial plans to schools for the fall. “Ultimately, we know that schools and families are…

City of Duluth Delays Adding 2800 Snow Removal Signs

DULUTH, Minn.– Financial shortfalls because of the pandemic have caused the city of Duluth to make budget cuts in several areas, including the city’s Snow Emergency Plan. The city is going to hold off from buying 2,800 new snow removal signs, saving over half a million dollars. Last fall, the city of Duluth updated its Snow Emergency Plan and found…

Blessing of the Bikes Held at Bird’s Bar

SUPERIOR, Wis.– With motorcycle season now on, dozens of bikers got together in Superior this evening to hold the annual Blessing of the Bikes. The event normally attracts hundreds of bikers at Vineyard Church in Duluth. But COVID-19 concerns scaled the tradition down this year with the location at Bird’s Bar in Superior. Organizers tell us it’s a time for…

Thrive Range Holds Virtual Community Meeting

DULUTH, Minn.– A St. Louis County organization dedicated to mental health and suicide prevention hosted a virtual meeting today to get feedback from the community. Thrive Range focuses on northern St. Louis county communities with high suicide rates. Leaders laid out their goals for the next couple of years, including expanding community outreach and offering more mental health resources at…

Tourism Tax Revenue Down Sharply From Last Year

DULUTH, Minn.– It’s been an unprecedented time for tourism revenue in Duluth as the city navigates through financial issues related to the pandemic and its lack of tax revenue from businesses that are struggling. On Wednesday, the city of Duluth released the latest numbers contributing to its major budget shortfalls because of the pandemic. This is in preparation for when…

Duluth Library Expanding Curbside Pickup

DULUTH, Minn.– Since the end of April, the Duluth Public Library has been doing curbside pickup and this week they introduced some new updates. Curbside pickup has been moved up from to Michigan Street to Superior Street, increasing the number of pickup spaces. The library also introduced new software for requesting books. Orders can be done online or over the…

YMCA Preparing to Open Swimming Pool

DULUTH, Minn.– As wellness centers and other places to exercise open back up, the pool at the YMCA in downtown Duluth is getting ready to open up. The pool is set to reopen on June 22. They will be using an online reservation system for the lanes and other areas of the pool. Staff are being invited back to retrain…

Bike Shops See Increase in Cyclists During Pandemic

DULUTH, Minn.– As the pandemic goes on, people are continuing to find different ways to get some fresh air. Leading biking to be as popular as it’s ever been in the Northland. “Driving around town I’m seeing more and more people out and about and on their bikes,” said Steve Meyer, Owner of Stewart’s Bike Shop in West Duluth. Stewart’s…

No Spike in Douglas County COVID-19 Cases After Restrictions Loosen

SUPERIOR, Wis.– Positive Coronavirus test results have doubled across Wisconsin since Governor Evers’ Safer-At-Home order ended last month. But counties in the northern part of the state like Douglas County have avoided a spike in cases. Douglas County health officials are surprised at the small amount of cases that have arose in the county. “These strategies have worked, in particular…

UMD Announces Reopening Plan for Fall Semester

DULUTH, Minn.– University of Minnesota Duluth has announced its plans to reopen the campus for the fall semester today. Residence halls, dining spaces, and other public places will open this fall. Classes will start August 31. There will be no fall break so classes will end by Thanksgiving. Finals will be held virtually. Classes will be in-person, online, or a…

Wisconsin to Give $40 Million in Aid to Hospitals

MADISON, Wis.– As healthcare providers around Wisconsin are working during the pandemic to keep everyone healthy, Governor Tony Evers is using money from the CARES Act to offer assistance to healthcare providers. The $40 million in assistance for hospitals will be based on the percentage of Medicaid claims paid to the hospital compared to all state Medicaid claims. The payments…

North Shore Tourism Picking Up During Summer

FINLAND, Minn.– As summer begins, the impact of the pandemic means a slow start for businesses along the North Shore. Tourist-reliant businesses like Maple Grove Motel and Bait Shop in Finland, Minnesota have been slower than normal but is starting to pick back up, seeing an increase in last minute reservations and ones for the fall. While business at the…

Duluth Public Parks Allowed to Reopen

DULUTH, Minn.– As COVID-19 restrictions are being lifted across Minnesota, it also means some changes are coming right here in Duluth. The city is working to open public parks and fields back up in a safe way but limited city resources in this area are causing some setbacks. With new updates from Governor Walz, Duluth city parks and playgrounds will…

More Relief for Iron Range Businesses

EVELETH, Minn.– Small business loans have been given out during the pandemic and over on the Iron Range, there is now another program to get relief. The Minnesota Department Of Iron Range Resources And Rehabilitation has pledged $7 million for the area. $5 million will go towards small business relief loans and another $2 million in grants for communities to…

Kendahl Mini Golf in Cloquet Opens for 55th Season

CLOQUET, Minn.– With summer coming up and school ending for the year around the area, families are going out to try and find activities to do during the summer. That means places like Kendahl Mini Golf in Cloquet are opening up for the season. What started as a mini golf course in a backyard has become a popular summer spot…

Police Address Use of Force Procedures

DULUTH, Minn.– In the aftermath of George Floyd’s death while he was in the hands of Minneapolis Police, city leaders from across the country and right here in Duluth are addressing policies and procedures. While no policies were announced to be changed, the city of Duluth talked about what goes into policies like the Use of Force policy. “We know…

Kendahl Mini Golf in Cloquet Reopens

CLOQUET, Minn.– One of Cloquet’s biggest summer attractions opened this week as Kendahl Mini Golf opened for the season. Normally they open on weekends in May but management at the course decided to wait until June to get the course ready, including replacing the carpet on the course along with getting new clubs and golf balls and adding safety precautions…

Water Park Opens at Mont du Lac

SUPERIOR, Wis.– With the school year ending and the nice weather, kids are getting ready to go out and swim. One resort in Superior is introducing a new feature this summer. While the park was open over Memorial Day weekend, Friday was the official grand opening for the new Big Kahuna water park that sits on the pond at the…

Community Garden Opens in Superior

SUPERIOR, Wis.– As the weather warms up, Superior residents have seen one community activity increase in popularity. Community Gardens in Superior have seen more people taking up spots than in recent years. The Oak Avenue Garden in Superior has doubled the amount of plots due to high demand. The garden was built in 2018 and has relied on volunteer support….