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“Three people can keep a secret, if two of them are dead.” (Benjamin Franklin).

Additional Stories

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We have several very tall white pines on our property. They were planted 28 years ago when a man that was selling his Christmas tree farm was going door to door selling the small trees he’d planted several years previous. Those trees are now 35-40 feet tall.

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Did you know that breast cancer is among the most common cancers women can face? The two greatest risk factors for breast cancer are being a female and getting older. For this reason, it is important that senior women become more aware of this disease and its risk factors, warning signs, and…

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Election Day is little more than a week away. As a citizen, you may feel the results will affect many aspects of life in this country. But as an investor, your situation probably won’t change after the votes are counted.

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Flexibility and choice has allowed each family to make decisions that best meet the needs of their unique situation during this pandemic. Over 500 students are attending our Distance Learning Academy. We continue to improve our program by constantly receiving and adjusting to feedback.

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Last week, North Branch Area Public Schools staff confronted circumstances we hoped to avoid. The number of lab confirmed positive results spiked at our Education Center, a spike in cases that we have not seen in any of our other buildings. We shifted to remote learning for PreK-1 students w…

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World Osteoporosis Day is observed on Oct. 20. It launches a year-long campaign dedicated to raising global awareness of the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of osteoporosis.

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Thanks to everyone in the North Branch Area Public Schools (NBAPS) family for a remarkable September! I so appreciate all of the ways students, families, staff, and the community for their efforts to engage students!

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I am excited to announce that the Senior Enrichment Center has hired a new Executive Director, Jody Van Lingen. She began working on Sept. 21, and is enjoying her new role.

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Like many when they’re young, I was eager to move away and take on the world. “You Don’t Know What You Got (Till It’s Gone)” – not only a great 80’s hit, but a realization I had after I left.

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We often reference the work of educators and support staff when we talk about the reopening of school, but the work of our Department of Buildings and Grounds is always critical, especially this year.

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Student involvement and student voice is so critical to creating an environment in which they feel supported and find joy in learning! We have been diligent to engage students in decisions and opportunities as we return to schools.

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Falling is not a normal part of aging and there are numerous precautions you can take to reduce your risk. Falls Prevention Month is designed to spread this important message.

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Today’s retirees, and those of tomorrow, have had a sense of purpose their entire lives – and they don’t intend to give it up just because they’ll no longer be working full time. In fact, 55% of recent retirees said retirement is the time for “a new chapter in life,” compared with just 22% w…

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I joined the County News Review on Sept. 15 as a new reporter serving Isanti County and the eastern portion of Chisago County.

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It gives me such great joy to announce, after several months of planning and periods of great uncertainty, that school resumed for all students at North Branch Area Public Schools on Friday, Sept. 11!

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It’s apple picking season. This past weekend I had the opportunity to pick apples at our cabin in northern Wisconsin. We have made this an annual tradition. The apples weren’t as plentiful as past years, but it was still a fun and worthwhile adventure.

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This week North Branch Area Public Schools officially started the 2020-21 school year! We are so proud to offer in-school hybrid services as well as a Distance Learning Academy option for families. In this way we provide families safety and flexibility based on their comfort level with the p…

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If you’ve recently become a widow or widower, you’re obviously dealing with an enormous emotional burden, and coping with your grief can seem like a full-time struggle. Unfortunately, the business of life must go on – and the financial moves you make at this time can have a big impact on your life.

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Municipal liquor stores exist to promote moderation and control in the sale and use of alcohol, working to keep it out of the hands of minors, while simultaneously generating income for the communities they serve. Profits are returned to taxpayers through levy reductions.

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I would like to share a few thoughts that have little to do with COVID-19 (don’t we hear enough?) but are from one of my favorite books (Insanely Simple/Ken Segall). I share these because despite the challenges and unique times we are living in, we still have work to do and lives to live, an…

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It’s hard to believe that Labor Day is already here! To many, it is just another three-day weekend where we relax and fire up the grill. It is also the unofficial end to summer. But, as often the case, there is more to it than that. We are celebrating the contributions and achievements of th…

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The 2020-21 school year is here and we are prepared to Return to Learn! Governor Walz, the Minnesota Department of Education, and the Minnesota Department of Health have provided guidance and expectations to school districts for a safe return to school. It is a daunting task to meet these ex…

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School is starting back up and many students are facing the reality of distance learning. This means hours spent doing classwork and homework while staring at a computer screen. For many students, this may lead to eyestrain and tired eyes. However, there is growing evidence that time spent i…

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Labor Day is almost here. Of course, this year, the holiday may have a different impact, given the employment-related stress and disruptions stemming from the coronavirus. Yet, it’s good to recognize the value of work and its importance in achieving your life’s goals. But if you’re going to …

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With so much happening around the start of the 2020-21 school year, so many different plans taking shape in school districts across the state, and multiple points of guidance from the state, it’s no wonder that people have questions!

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A year ago this week I joined the Bluejacket family, and have learned over the past year what a special community we have in Cambridge-Isanti. I am grateful for the strong community support of our schools. This is a community that values education and has high expectations for responsibility…

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With the upcoming General Election in November, as well as the current pandemic, I thought it might be a good time to discuss voting early by mail so that all voters are prepared. If you prefer not to vote in your polling place, you can vote via mail by applying for a ballot any time up to t…

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As noted in past columns, our school district theme for the year is “Better Together.” And, although this is always true, it has rarely been more true than right now. The challenges we face as a community, and district, become more manageable when we are working together toward the same comm…

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The Eastern Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea) though not an actual native of Minnesota, is perhaps the most common purple coneflower plant grown in home gardens in Minnesota. There is also the Narrow Leafed Purple Coneflower (Echinacea augustifolia) and the Purple Pale Coneflower (Echin…

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August has been designated as Medic Alert Awareness Month. The Medic Alert Foundation has been around for over 60 years. In 1953, Linda Collins of Turlock, California cut her finger bad enough to require her to go to the hospital. During a test at the hospital, Linda went into anaphylactic s…

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A generation or so ago, people didn’t just retire from work – many of them also withdrew from a whole range of social and communal activities. But now, it’s different: The large Baby Boom cohort, and no doubt future ones, are insisting on an active lifestyle and continued involvement in thei…

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Last week, Governor Walz and his team delivered additional guidance for schools regarding reopening. The full guidance may be reviewed on the Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) website. The guidance outlines a data-driven process to help districts decide how best to deliver instruction.…

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August is Happiness Happens Month, started by the Secret Society of Happy People in 1999. The society has three purposes for August: recognize and express happiness; listen to others talk about their happiness; and don’t rain on other people’s parades. These sound like some good ideas for an…

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In an effort to raise awareness, educate our community and assist families who have been touched by Alzheimer’s disease, this month’s article will highlight creating an emergency kit, in the event an emergency situation arises for yourself, and/or the person you are caring for.

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I am fortunate to live in this wonderful community and have opportunities to build relationships with members of both the school, and broader, community.

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The COVID-19 pandemic has unsettled the country’s employment picture for months and will likely continue to do so for a while. However, the nature and terminology of this disruption varies greatly among individuals – some have seen their jobs disappear, others have been “furloughed” and stil…

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With all of the uncertainty and implications from Covd-19, this has been a very unprecedented year. The advent of shelter in place, working from home and social distancing has resulted in a noticeable increase in the use of city’s parks, trails and outdoor open spaces. This has allowed resid…

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My name is Sara Paul, Superintendent at North Branch Area Public Schools (NBAPS) and one of North Branch’s newest residents! Everyone has made my family and I feel so welcome since we arrived and all of us thank you for making North Branch feel like home so quickly.

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Summer is in full swing and the days of extreme heat are upon us! A recent study performed by Climate Central highlights the vulnerability of the elderly when it comes to heat.

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In an effort to raise awareness, educate our community and assist families who have been touched by Alzheimer’s disease, this month’s article will highlight how friends, family, faith and community organizations can reach out and support someone who may be caring for someone with Alzheimer’s…

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Over the past few months, just about everyone has felt the loss of some type of freedom, whether it’s being able to travel, engage in social gatherings or participate in other activities we previously took for granted. Still, as we prepare to observe Independence Day, it’s comforting to real…

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Summers at North Branch Area Public Schools (NBAPS) are a busy time for the staff that work year-round. There are always so many things to do to prepare for the next school year; cleaning and preparing our spaces, managing construction projects, coordinating transportation, creating schedule…

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What an extraordinary school year it has been. We are filled with gratitude for the incredible community support we have experienced this year.

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It’s unfortunate, but true: During this period of economic uncertainty, one of the busiest “industries” has been financial scamming. But it goes on even during normal times, too, so you’ll want to know what to look for, and how to defend yourself.

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Summer will be here before you know it, and along with it, an important date for all the dads out there—Father’s Day, Sunday, June 21. Although most sons and daughters don’t need a specific date to celebrate the most important man in their life, every dad gets his special day on the calendar.