Cheers to CHS Envirothon team’s successes

    The Crookston Envirothon team competed with the best in the state and came out in sixth place in a field of 27 teams. This marks their sixth straight appearance at the state competition. The interesting thing about this Crookston team is their age. Not one senior competes on the team. Yet, they were still able to put together 116.07 points, 10.93 from first place Hopkins at 127.

    Katherine Geist (Jr.), Tai Baig (Jr.), Emily Gillette (Jr.), Anke Weirsma (So.) and Ella Weber (So.) make up the team. Geist, Gillette and Baig also competed on the 2018 state-qualifying team that took fifth. That team had one senior in Maddie Everett.

    Many teams, whether it be academics, sports or arts, often use youth as an excuse for a lack of success and assume improvement comes with age. The Crookston Envirothon team decided to skip this status-quo and went straight to success.

– Nolan Beilstein, Sports Editor

Jeers to people that can’t agree on a reasonable solution to the child care crisis

    This is a pretty touchy subject around these parts and it seems as though there are more than just a few aisles to walk down. The lack of child care openings, specifically for infants and toddlers, is a significant issue that is causing some families to look for work elsewhere, to move elsewhere, to consider staying home to watch their children instead of working, and even to consider postponing having another child.

    One group wants the city and partnering organizations to assist current child care providers instead of add another center, to potentially help them expand to accommodate more children, plus look at what types of financial assistance they could get in their current status of caregiving.

    Another group wants to add a child care center at the former Sisters of St. Joseph Marywood Residence/Glenmore Recovery Center just east of Crookston and the Crookston Housing & Economic Development Authority (CHEDA) board this week approved an allocation of up to $50,000 to make it happen with the renovations needed. The nonprofit center, Regal Academy, could accept anywhere from 50 to 80 infants, toddlers and children and put a dent in the local shortage of licensed child care slots. Those opposed to this group’s initiative say it could create too much competition for current providers causing some to possibly close their doors and even more say they don’t want taxpayer money going outside of city limits. Others say it will difficult for the proposed center to find enough staff as current centers continue to have a similar struggle.

    And yet another group was formed with the lead coming from City Hall to further explore other in-town options after hearing from constituents on various oppositions of the proposed center east of Crookston. This group has met twice, once at Washington Elementary School in early May and once more at City Hall Tuesday. At the earlier meeting, attendees wondered if other potential sites were properly researched and toured with some disagreements from current providers and clarification that Washington School was not in the running. The mayor said at the meeting that the final decision needs to be the community’s decision which seemed to be the driving force behind the additional group.

    When it comes down to it you’re not going to please everybody, but something has to be done. If you have a group that’s willing to “walk the walk” instead of just “talk the talk”, let them. And it sounds like CHEDA and Regal Academy have done just that.

– Jess Bengtson, Assistant Editor