January 23 news

WORTHINGTON – Local law enforcement is working hard on conquering social media, hoping to use a variety of ways to get the word out when the public needs to be alerted or when law enforcement needs their help. The Nobles County Sheriff’s Office has maintained a Facebook page since February of last year, and according to Worthington Police Sgt. Brett Wiltrout, the department is in the process of creating a Facebook page of their own, which is expected to be up in February or March.

Nobles County Sheriff Kent Wilkening said they are working on a routine to get the Facebook page updated more often, and can include things like lost dogs, weather alerts, scam alerts and other public safety issues, such as closed roads or a missing child. Other nearby county sheriff’s offices such as Rock and Murray also have Facebook pages.

Another option citizens have to keep in touch with weather happenings and law enforcement alerts is Nixle, a public safety alert system that comes through cell phones as a text message. Weather alerts come from the National Weather Service, and local law enforcement happenings are typed into the Nixle system by the Nobles County Dispatch.

A perfect example of social media helping law enforcement occurred Tuesday evening when a 15-year-old autistic boy was reported missing. Nixle alerts went out, people shared the information to Facebook and Twitter, and the boy was found in relatively short order unharmed.

To sign up for Nixle, you can go to Nixle.com, or text 888777 and respond with a zip code.

WORTHINGTON - Worthington High School Performing Arts will present the all-school musical “The Wizard of Oz” at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 6, 7 and 8 and 2:30 p.m. Feb. 9 at Memorial Auditorium Performing Arts Center. Advance ticket sales will be available in front of the WHS main office beginning Monday and run through Thursday only from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. There are no phone orders accepted. All seats are reserved. Ticket prices are $6 for adults and $4 for students.

District 518 activity passes will be honored for the Feb. 9 matinee performance only. Tickets are also available one hour before each show in the Memorial Auditorium lobby. For more information, call WHS at 376-6121.

WORTHINGTON - Historic Dayton House is hosting the 10th Annual Valentine Dinner Fundraiser, February 14 & 15 at 6:30 pm, the menu will feature Worthington’s “Celebrity Chefs,” serving a choice of Prime Rib Au Jus or Chicken Cordon Bleu, Tickets are $30 each, Reservations are required by calling Historic Dayton House at 507-727-131.

WORTHINGTON — Free tax preparation services will be available for Minnesota returns at the Nobles County Integration Collaborative. Hourly appointments will be available at 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Mondays beginning Feb. 10, all of March and April 7. There will be additional appointments available on the Thursdays in March at 9, 10 and 11 a.m. For more information or to make an appointment, call Betty McAllister at 360-3118 or Shirley Olson at 360-3100.

PIPESTONE - The Pipestone County Soil and Water Conservation (SWCD) Board of Supervisors is seeking a replacement for District 5 Supervisor Joyce LaBrune, who represented Aetna, Rock and Burke townships in eastern Pipestone County. The board agreed to begin the search for a temporary replacement, but a more permanent replacement would serve a four-year term and would be installed by voters in the November general election. A supervisor assists the SWCD staff to protect and preserve Pipestone County’s natural resources.

Any resident in Aetna, Rock and Burke townships interested in filling the opening position should fill out a general application form that includes a statement as to why he or she would want to serve on the board. The applications are located at the SWCD office in Pipestone City Administration building, 119 Second Ave SW.

JACKSON - The Jackson City Council held a public hearing Tuesday night to consider AGCO’s application for Minnesota Investment Funds through the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development. Jackson Economic Development Coordinator Sue Pirsig said the application is part of AGCO’s Fast Forward Development project in Jackson. AGCO is applying for $375,000 from the State in the form of a forgivable loan. Part of that funding package includes $50,000 in local matching dollars, $25,000 from the city and $25,000 from Jackson County.

AGCO is making a $42.65 million dollar investment into their facilities in Jackson. Pirsig said AGCO's investment into their facilities solidifies their location in Jackson. Pirsig said the local dollars are an investment for the community. Just a few months ago, AGCO made a $220,000 investment in the community with Jackson's Townhome Project, which will feature 48 units of rental properties for the workforce.

ACGO Senior Project Manager Scott Bergland said the Fast Forward Project consists of 40 percent brick and mortar and 60 percent in equipment, lasers, test equipment and increasing AGCO’s technology capabilities.

Following the public hearing, the Council unanimously approved the resolution for the for AGCO’s Fast Forward Application to the Minnesota Investment Fund through DEED.

OKOBOJI, Iowa - The Iowa Lakeside Laboratory is inviting the public to be “Part of the Art” this weekend with the People’s Art Project. Lakeside Lab’s Education Coordinator Jane Shuttleworth said the project is a lot of fun and a chance to be part of something bigger than you are. People go to the lab and form the shape of an animal out on the ice, then a plane flies overhead and takes a picture.

Participants are asked to go to Peace Corner, at the junction of Highway 9 and 86, then are shuttled to the lab. Please dress warmly and wear dark outer clothing, since this year’s shape is that of a bison.

After the photos are taken, everyone heads back to the lab. When the photographer Judy Hemphill gets back, participants look at the photos as a group and choose one. Details on the Peoples Art Project may be found online at lakesidelab.org

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