On the sidelines, Gary Fasching (front, in white) motions as he keeps a keen eye on the progress of a football game.

Fasching has ‘large pair of shoes to fill’

by Mark Lauer – news@thenewsleaders.com What if you were picked to take over for someone who was so honored, so well-respected, that the very thought of being that person’s “replacement” seemed out of the question? And that no one, no matter how qualified, could ever fill those shoes again? Welcome to Gary Fasching’s world. On […]

The Wolters and the Radekes rehearse the song "New York City" during a rehearsal for "Annie," which opens Friday, June 11 at Escher Auditorium at the College of St. Benedict. From left to right are Kara Wolters, her mother Judy Wolters, Ava Radeke (girl in front), her sister Grace; and their mother, Katie.

Mothers-daughters enjoy bonding in ‘Annie’

by Dennis Dalman – news@thnewsleaders.com During a rehearsal, when theatrical newcomer Katie Radeke started dancing on stage, her two young daughters squirmed with embarrassment and later told her she was acting “silly.” But Radeke explained she had to act a bit silly because the character she is playing is a bit silly. The girls understood, and […]

The Wiese family of St. Joseph smiles during a family holiday photo. They are: Amara, 6, Amber, Morgan, 1 and Dominic, 9.

Gift-giving tree recipients want to thank community

by TaLeiza Calloway news@thenewsleaders.com On a Monday afternoon, Amber Wiese waits for her daughter, Amara, 6, to arrive from school and her 1-year-old daughter, Morgan, to awake from her nap. Her oldest child, Dominic, 9, has a few hours yet before he’s done with school. Her home is calm as she talks about how grateful […]

photos by Randy Asseln
In this photo by St. Stephen resident Randy Asseln, the “one-horn wandering moose” emerges from a cornfield west of St. Stephen. After crossing the road, the moose heads east toward a tamarack swamp next to St. Stephen. The creature had also been spotted in and near Sauk Centre, Melrose and Freeport.

2012 Year in Review Part 2: Dominated by Verso tragedy

by Dennis Dalman – news@thenewsleaders.com July through December: July A major “facelift” gets underway at Sartell schools. Thanks to funds authorized by Sartell voters last year, the ambitious projects have begun. They include a major structural rearrangement of the District Office building, new roofs on the high school and middle school, a new running track […]

Park Board seeks volunteers for Cloverdale project

by TaLeiza Calloway news@thenewsleaders.com The St. Joseph Park Board is seeking volunteer partners to assist with improvements to Cloverdale Park. Park Board Chair John Anderson said the board is looking for volunteers to help in reducing the cost of the project. Board members earlier this year budgeted $25,000 for improvements to the neighborhood park. Anderson […]

Meyer named chair of new school board

by Dennis Dalman news@thenewsleaders.com Michelle Meyer was elected as the new chairman of the Sartell-St. Stephen School Board during the first meeting of the new board, which met for the first time Jan. 7.  Meyer had served on the board in previous years before being elected to a two-year replacement term last November. The Sartell […]

Joseph and Valerie Silva are the proud owners of the new McDonald’s restaurant in Sartell, which will have a grand opening Jan. 29 as a fundraiser for the Brian Klinefelter Foundation.

Silvas at right place, right time for St. Joseph McDonald’s

by Dennis Dalman news@thenewsleaders.com A happy series of coincidences convinced Joseph and Valerie Silva they’d made the right choice when they decided to move from Chicago to central Minnesota. The Silvas are the owners of the new McDonald’s restaurant in St. Joseph. They also own two McDonald’s in Waite Park and one in Avon. Although […]

Eric Joseph Thomes

Decker murder case leads to man’s suicide

by Dennis Dalman news@thenewsleaders.com The massive effort to locate the killer or killers of Cold Spring-Richmond Police Officer Thomas Decker took a grim turn last week with the suicide of a man described as a “person of interest.” The case, however, remains under investigation, and authorities were quick to point out there is no evidence […]