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Gardening class at Brainerd Public Library

■ Staples Host

Lions to mark

75th anniversary

STAPLES — The Staples Host Lions Club this year is celebrating 75 years of service to the community. The anniversary will be celebrated with a banquet at the Town’s Edge Restaurant on April 10, beginning at 5:30 p.m.

Current Lions President Dean Ogg will serve as master of ceremonies for the 75th anniversary program, which will feature Lions International Director Mike Molenda as guest speaker. A resident of Hastings, Molenda is serving a two-year term as international director. Also taking part in the program will be current Lions Zone Chair Keith Porter introducing the head table. Past District Governor Frank Leidenfrost introducing the guest speaker, and Staples Mayor Chris Etzler giving the welcome.

The current 75-member club was organized on Dec. 12, 1938, with the Wadena Lions Club sponsoring the new club. There were 33 charter members of the new organization, with F.J. Rondorf serving as the club’s first president in 1938-39. To date, 75 different individuals have served as club president, with current presidents having the option to serve two years in office.

Tickets for the anniversary banquet are available through April 1 by calling 894-1935.

Over the years, Staples Lions have gone on to serve in posts above the local level. past Zone chair-persons have included Jim Randgaard, Ted Lelwica, Meyer Engen, Lambert Klose, Vern Seipkes, Jack Wilson, Doug Grossman, Orv Meyer, Doug Anderson, Frank Leidenfrost, Jack Shriver and Keith Porter.

Seipkes, Randgaard, Grossman and Doug Anderson have served as Lions Region chairs. Elected to the position of district governor have been Vern Seipkes, Doug Anderson and Frank Leidenfrost. Staples Lion Vern Seipkes served a two-year term as international director. (Only International Lions president is a higher office.)

Other positions held include Doug Anderson and Jack Shriver as Minnesota Lions Eye Bank directors, Frank Leidenfrost as Minnesota Lions Hearing Foundation trustee and chair. Leidenfrost also served a term as Lions Club International Foundation global leadership coordinator. Mike Palmer, Randy Beinhorn and Leidenfrost have also served as secretary-treasurers of the Lions District cabinet.

At the local level, only 12 men have served in the role of Lions club secretary, with the late Vern Seipkes owning the longevity title with both a 21-year span (1962-83) and 15-year term (1985-2000). Only Meyer Engen (1952-62) and Al Jorissen (2000-2009) have come close to his tenure. Leidenfrost is the current Lions club secretary.

There are no living charter members of the Staples Lions, but there are currently 11 members who have been in the organization for 40 years or more. Virgil “Brad” Bredemeier has the distinction of 65 years of service as a Lion, joining just after he arrived in Staples in 1949. He is followed by Loren “Lefty” Cameron with 52 years; Don Dravis and Doug Grossman 50 years; Morrie Lundgren 47 years; Leidenfrost and Earl Mergens 45 years; Orv Meyer and Jack Wilson at 43 years; Clyde Japke with 41 years and Glen Hasselberg at an even 40 years.

■ Bike across the

USA presentation

to be held

Unlimited Learning presents Bike Across the USA with Ed Dallas from 1:30-3:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 8, at Heartwood Senior Living in Crosby.

Dallas will talk about his 2012 ride from Bar Harbor, Maine, to Anacortes, Wash.

Cost for non-members $5. For more information, visit

■ Crosslake

Chili Cook-Off legislation advances

The Minnesota Senate Tuesday passed Senate File 2060, a bill relating to food licensing law, according to Sen. Carrie Ruud, R-Breezy Point.

Ruud successfully offered an amendment to the bill to include language modifying Minnesota Department of Health regulations relating to nonprofit chili cook-offs.

In 2012 the Minnesota Department of Health enforced its regulations requiring meat preparations being made on site. As a result participation in Crosslake Day’s Chili Cook-off fell dramatically from 16 participants to just eight.

“Last year individuals with Crosslake Day’s Chili Cook-off approached me looking for help with legislation which could help restore participation in Crosslake’s popular chili cook-off,” Ruud said in a statement. “It’s crucial we were able to get this legislation moving on behalf of our local nonprofits who host these great events which are an important part of our local communities. We still have some work to do, but this is a great first step,” added Ruud.

The legislation now awaits a vote on the House companion and will most likely head to a conference committee after the passage of the House version of Senate File 2060.

■ Gardening class at the Brainerd Public Library on April 8

The Brainerd Public library will host a gardening class, “Landscaping for Wildlife,” from noon to 1 p.m. Tuesday, at the Brainerd Public Library.

Landscaping for Wildlife will be presented by Master Gardener Ed Feiler. He will discuss the principles and benefits of landscaping for wildlife such as birds and butterflies. Habitat components will be described and an example of landscaping a yard for wildlife. Some native plants and non-plant habitat elements will be shown. Interested persons may register at the library or call 829-5574.

In May, “Growing Great Vegetables” will be presented by Master Gardener JoAnn Weaver at noon on May 13. Register by calling 829-5574.

Free Master Gardener classes through the Univeristy of Minnesota Extension Crow Wing County Master Gardeners will take place at the Brainerd Public Library from January to December 2014.

Monthly presentations facilitated by certified University of Minnesota Extension Crow Wing County Master Gardeners will discuss subjects ranging from garden tools to gourds.

Master Gardeners are University of Minnesota-trained volunteers whose jobs are to educate the public about a variety of horticulture subjects using readily-available, up-to-date research-based information.

The Master Gardener Program educational effort is designed to enhance the public’s quality of life and to promote good stewardship of the environment.

Denton (Denny) Newman Jr.
I've worked at the Brainerd Dispatch with various duties since Dec. 7, 1983. Starting off as an Ad Designer and currently Director of Audience Development. The Dispatch has been an interesting and challenging place to work. I'm fortunate to have made many friends, both co-workers and customers.
(218) 855-5889