‘Tis the season for holiday events

Coming off the first weekend of December 2018, and the many events that have already transpired, we are full-fledged into the holiday events season. Santa Claus, and sometimes Mrs. Claus and some spritely-looking elves, made appearances at the Grand Theatre, University of Minnesota Crookston, Walmart, Crookston Community Pool, and the Crookston Fire Department Saturday and Sunday. This week, the holiday mood continues with Toys for Tots gift wrapping at the Golden Link and more Toys for Tots shopping this weekend, Angel trees up at the Villa St. Vincent and RiverView Health, open houses, holiday concert at Highland School, RiverView Cookie Walk, Collective Goods sales at the Villa and RiverView, Just for Kix Winter (dance) Show, Crookston Library Grand Re-Opening, and the Villa’s Light Up A Life event. Uffda! There’s no shortage of events so get out there and enjoy, Crookston.

Support Toys for Tots

Toys for Tots has been delivering “hope” since 1947 with 548 million toys distributed to date and over 250 million children supported. In Crookston, the numbers continue to grow with the first round of toy shopping commencing Saturday and 256 toys purchased for 256 kids. That is said to be a record for the first round of shopping! Support from individuals, groups, service clubs, and businesses is needed to keep this program afloat. Think of all the kids who see that fire truck pull up to their house and Santa Claus with gifts in hand to make their holiday that much brighter when you have your checkbook out. Kudos to all the annual donors and to those that have already donated, too! Crookston should consider itself lucky to have so many generous people as part of this community.

Face it: Vikings are better on paper than on the actual field

It was written on this page prior to the start of the National Football League season that the Vikings could underachieve and therefore disappoint this season by finishing with a 9-7 record. It wasn't an indictment of the team itself, really, but more an examination of their schedule, which was looking to be tough. Well, the schedule has been and continues to be tough, and the Vikings continue to underachieve and disappiont. The offensive line, a weakness going into the season, is still a weakness, whether they're trying to open holes for running backs or trying to protect Kirk Cousins. And the defense has been inconsistent; just look at how much space Patriots offensive players had to run free Sunday afternoon. The Vikings have a super-talented roster on paper, but games are won and lost by plays made or not made on the field, and it's time for fans to realize that this team is not living up to its advance billing.

Walz-inspired hope is realized next spring

Is it possible that Minnesota's government, as in our legislature and gubernatorial administration, will start functioning at a higher level than it has in recent years? Gov.-elect Tim Walz, a Democrat, spoke to a packed house in Crookston on Saturday and he was enthusiastic, charismatic, and he seemed to sound all the right notes, whether he was answering a question posed by a DFLer or someone who disagrees with him on most issues. Unlike Gov. Mark Dayton, Walz won't be faced with a House and Senate both led by Republican majorities; the House flipped to DFL control in the November election. Will that make a difference when the 2019 legislature convenes and tries to get meaningful things accomplished in a timely fashion in the spring? Walz inspired hope on Saturday. We'll see if that hope is realized in the form of positive change.

Students, take the ASVAB test

Students from Crookston High School are preparing to take the ASVAB test, the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery. The ASVAB is a timed aptitude test which is given to over 14,000 schools nationwide. The test is maintained by the Department of Defense. Scoring is divided into four critical areas, Arithmetic Reasoning, Word Knowledge, Paragraph Comprehension, and Mathematics Knowledge. Many students take this test to determine how qualified they are for certain occupational, often military, specialties. A big score can improve your chances of getting the specialty/job and signing bonus you want from the military. If you’re serious about joining the military, then get serious about the ASVAB. If you’re not thinking of joining the military, take the test anyway; its practice for other timed tests you will take in your future. The sign-up date to take the test has already passed, but students, keep the ASVAB on your radar for upcoming testing dates.            

– Anna Huck, student writer