Bill Riner of Sartell recently received statewide recognition for his role of mentoring Skyler Figallo in the Big Brothers Big Sisters program. The two have spent time together learning new hobbies such as fishing and other activities.

Big Brother Riner recognized by BBBS for guidance of Little Brother Figallo

by Cori Hilsgen – news@thenewsleaders.com

Sartell resident Bill Riner was recently recognized for his outstanding role as a mentor in the Big Brothers Big Sisters program.

BBBS of Central Minnesota recognizes a “Big Brother” and “Big Sister” annually. Riner and Julie Hentges of Richmond were selected to receive the honor and to represent BBBS of Central Minnesota in the statewide competition. Both Riner and Hentges were chosen as the sole winners in their respective categories.

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Sartell High School Senior Ashley Regnier reads to a class of first-graders recently. The reading was part of a project by the National Honor Society students to share time and talents with young students at Oak Ridge Elementary School.

‘Once upon a storybook’

Sartell High School Senior Ashley Regnier reads to a class of first-graders recently. The reading was part of a project by the National Honor Society students to share time and talents with young students at Oak Ridge Elementary School.

Apollo's Jordan Keller (left) and Brandon Bloch (right) battle a St. Thomas Academy player during the Eagles' first round state tournament game at the Xcel Engergy Center in St. Paul on March 6.

Despite state tournament loss, season was a winner for Apollo

by Mark Lauer – news@thenewsleaders.com

When you’re driving through St. Paul, it doesn’t take very long to realize what takes center stage in Minnesota. It seems no matter which direction you look, especially if you’re anywhere near the Xcel Energy Center, home of the Minnesota Wild, you are always reminded you are in the “State of Hockey.”

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Sartell employees experience eerie déja vu in Alabama

by Dennis Dalman – news@thenewsleaders.com

For seven Sartell city employees, a recent visit to Alabama was like a tragic déja vu that reminded them of a sad and hectic week in late May of last year.

May 28, Labor Day, was the day the Verso paper mill exploded and burned, killing one employee and wounding several others.

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Baltes, parishioners hail election of new pope

by Dennis Dalman – news@thenewsleaders.com

The election of a new pope has made Father Tim Baltes of St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church and many others in Sartell very happy.

Members of the congregation are also pleased with the selection of Jorge Mario Bergoglio (pronounced Ber-GOAL-io) as the new pope of the worldwide Roman Catholic Church. The 76-year-old man, who chose the name Pope Francis I, hails from Buenos Aires, Argentina, where he has lived for years in humble simplicity in a modest apartment. He is also the first non-European pope to serve in more than 1,200 years and the first member of the Jesuit order to lead the church. He will replace Pope Benedict XVI who announced last month he would retire because of aging issues.

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Sabres left Tuesday for state tourney

The Sartell Sabres boys’ basketball team had a rousing send-off  Tuesday when they headed out for the state championship tournament in the Twin Cities. It is the Sabres’ first time at a state tourney.

The school gave the players a lively pep rally in the gymnasium before they left for Minneapolis at 6 p.m. Tuesday.

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Local leaders pleased with new pope

by TaLeiza Calloway – news@thenewsleaders.com

The world watched and waited as a new pope was selected. Local faith leaders in St. Joseph and beyond watched as well and are pleased with the choice.

The new pope, Jorge Mario Bergoglio (pronounced Ber-GOAL-io), chose Francis as his pontical name. He is the 266th pope of the Roman Catholic Church. The 76-year-old is also the first non-European pope to serve in more than 1,200 years and the first member of the Jesuit order to lead the church.

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Elizabeth Larson (Glinda) and Zoe Novak (Dorothy, right), both of St. Joseph, discuss witches and munchkins during a rehearsal.

St. John’s Prep to present ‘Wizard of Oz’ this weekend

by TaLeiza Calloway – news@thenewsleaders.com

As flying monkeys practiced Tuesday (March 18) at the Paramount Theatre in St. Cloud, Br. Paul-Vincent Niebauer, OSB, gave directions about a cue for an upcoming performance of “The Wizard of Oz.” St. John’s Preparatory School is producing the musical, which opens this weekend. Shows are slated for 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, March 22-23; and 2 p.m. Sunday, March 24.

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