The Times' Newsroom staff weigh in on their top five things they'd like to see happen locally or around the globe

Give ag trucks a little extra time heading through town

You might know by now that the Highway 75 bypass bridge is closed for repairs and improvements until late September and you might also know that grain, hay, sugar beet and other agriculture-related trucks are traveling through Crookston to get to their outside destinations. People have openly expressed their frustrations with the timing of the project out in public and on social media. So, how can you help the situation? Drive carefully and give the Ag trucks some extra time and space out on the local roads. They need to make wide turns, go slow around corners, and take longer to get going after being at a stop sign or stop light. Drivers: Get out of their way; Bicyclists and Pedestrians: Wait for them to pass before crossing the road. Let’s all be safe and hope the bridge is open by October.

Consider donating to the Power of Produce program

The Power of Produce (PoP) Club program took off like a rocket for the first time earlier this summer at the Crookston Farmers Market giving local kids vouchers for fresh produce. Each week, on Thursday afternoons, close to 100 kids have benefited from the PoP Club and they’re now reaching their limit for the season. There’s still a month to go for the Farmers Market and lots of produce left to buy. Organizers want kids to continue to benefit weekly from the program, so they’re now accepting donations to get them through to the end of the season. Donations can be sent to: University of Minnesota Extension - 510 County Road 71, Suite 119 - Crookston, MN 56716; dropped off at the Crookston Farmers Market PoP Club tent, or, for more info, call (218) 281-8027.  

Don’t underestimate importance of a quality offensive line for the Vikings

The Vikings brass did what many of their fans were probably hoping what they'd do on Sunday by trading for an offensvie lineman. Not just any offensive lineman, either. For a seventh round pick, the Vikings picked up center Brett Jones from the Giants, and he can play guard, too. With second year center Pat Elflein still recovering from offseason surgeries and apparently poised to miss at least the first regular season game, the Vikings had to do something. This is a Super Bowl-caliber team, and in Saturday's third preseason game, against the Seahawks - typically considered the preseason game that's the best indicator of regular season success or failure - Vikings running backs were stuffed, and quarterback Kirk Cousins had to scramble often, and took too many hits. You can't have championship aspirations with an offensive line considered a weak link. Picking up Jones for a low draft pick was a necessary transaction.

Is a measured approach to McCain possible on social media?

Social media is quite the thing, wonderful to some, awful to others, when a prominent person dies. Instantly, the deceased is worshipped and practically sainted, but also reviled for whatever misdeeds he or she was apparently guilty of in their life. The death of Sen. John McCain Saturday might be the best example of all. A prisoner of war for five years in Vietnam, he was seen as a war hero and a hero in a more general sense, and as a senator, McCain was called a “maverick” Republican who is not recognizable in today's Republican party. But he also was seen by many as a hawk, a warmonger, even, especially when it came to the war on terror, and McCain's harshest critics aren’t holding back online. Is it possible in this digital age to take a deep breath or two, to let the dust settle for a bit on a story or a development in a story, before unleashing extreme reactions? No, it's probably not. But a person can dream. In the meantime, McCain asked before his death that former Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama offer eulogies at his funeral, and that current President Donald Trump stay away. Classic maverick McCain...

Close out your summer in style with some Pirate football

Crookston High School commences the academic school year on Tuesday, September 4. The Crookston Pirates football team travels to East Grand Forks for their first game on Friday, August 31. Seems like an ideal opportunity to make the Green Wave’s home game slightly more neutral. With the exception of Fisher, Fertile-Beltrami and Red Lake Falls, East Grand Forks is the closest away game destination any Pirate team will have to travel this year as far as mileage goes. Considering the away football games this season (East Grand Forks, Breckenridge, Barnesville, Roseau), East Side is the closest to Crookston by 55 miles. The only other sport that weekend is girls’ tennis the same Friday in Moorhead at 10 a.m. Close out the summer in style and fill those away bleachers. Remember the shot in Hoosiers of all the cars following the team bus? Make Crookston that school this Friday.