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News from the week of February 21, 2001 Headlight Herald - Serving Tracy, Minnesota, since 1880

See new possibilities for Tracy, consultant suggests

Fred Sabongi asked Tracy community leaders to look at their town in new ways Tuesday night.

Don't think of Highway. 14, he said, as simply a highway leading through town. Think of it as a center of commerce. Promote it with a new designation or name. Craig Avenue, for instance, sounds better than Highway. 14, Sabongi said. The term “Hwy. 14,” Sabongi indicated, gives the impression that Tracy is simply a place to drive though.

And Downtown Tracy? Sabongi said visitors coming into Tracy on Craig Ave. have no idea a downtown exists. Where are the signs and other invitations directing out-of-town people to visit downtown businesses? he asked.

Sabongi suggested that Tracy latch onto the unusual and turn it into an advantage. He referred to the city's street grid in the older sections of town, platted to run parallel and at right angles to the railroad, rather than on a straight north and south axis. Perhaps, he Sabongi said, some of the triangular parcels and sharp turns turning south off Craig Avenue can make it more likely people will off Craig Ave and toward the downtown area.

Tracy firemen had busy year in 2000

The Tracy Fire Department responded to 46 calls during 2000.

A year-end report shows that city firemen responded to 25 rural calls and 21 city calls in the 12-month period from Dec. 1, 1999 to Nov. 30, 2000.

The city limits calls included two house fires with a combined $75,000 worth of damage. The next most serious city fire was a Tracy Dental Health Center fire that caused an estimated $15,000 worth of damage. Five city calls were false alarms, with another three being car accidents. City fire losses totaled $92,900.

The largest rural fire losses were a $50,000 barn fire. Two truck fires totaled $20,000 worth of damage.

The rural calls included seven grass fires and four vehicle accidents. Seven rural responses were mutual aid calls to other fire departments. Another seven calls involved assistance to the Tracy Ambulance Service.

Tracy Lutheran dedication is Sunday

As a young mother and wife in the 1950s, Goldie Wilking remembers how thankful she was when the newly-built Tracy Lutheran Church was dedicated in 1956.

“We had young children at the time, so I didn't have much to do with the building plans. But I remember sitting in church and thinking how wonderful it was that other people in the church had gone ahead and gotten this built. We thought the new church was wonderful.”

Today, the long-time church-member has grandchildren attending Tracy Lutheran. She expresses similar sentiments about a recently completed $960,000 remodeling project at Tracy Lutheran.

Wilking and other congregation members will celebrate the completion of the Tracy Lutheran project Sunday with a special dedication service at 11 a.m. A potluck dinner follows at noon in the church fellowship hall. An open house begins at 1 p.m. and continues through 3 p.m. The public is invited to tour the church facilities.

Heart surgery survivor:

Don't ignore heart attack warnings

Delon Knudson has this advice for anyone experiencing heart attack symptoms: Don't delay getting medical help.

“Just do it!” urges the retired Revere man.

Fortunately for Knudson, he did see a doctor (Dr. Wilfredo Apostol of Tracy) before a full-fledged heart attack struck. On Oct. 27 at Methodist Hospital in St. Louis Park, Knudson underwent coronary bypass surgery. Grafts were conducted on three clogged arteries supplying blood to Knudson's heart. The surgery was successful.

Today, Knudson's health is markedly improved. Three times a week, he participates in a cardiac rehabilitation therapy program at the Tracy Hospital. He feels better. His stamina has improved.

“I haven't felt this good in a long time,” he smiles. “I feel real good.”

The cardiac rehabilitation program offered by Tracy Area Medical Services (TAMS) provides Knudson with a carefully monitored exercise and nutrition program.

Library okays Internet policy

The Tracy Public Library has a new written policy for on-line use of computers at the library. The policy was approved recently by the library board.

The intent is to head off potential problems before they occur.

“We haven't had any problems with anyone using computers at the library,” said Librarian Vickie Olson. However, she feels a written policy could be invaluable should questionable situations involving the Internet at the library occur.

The new policy gives library staff the authority to ask a patron to log off the computer if it is thought “a user is displaying inappropriate or pornographic materials on the computer.”

Applicants sought for joint city-chamber job

Rettmer rejects full-time offer

The City of Tracy and the Tracy Chamber of Commerce are seeking applicants to fill the combined position of Economic Development Director and Chamber of Commerce director.

The job was offered to Con Rettmer, the city's half-time EDA director. However, Rettmer informed the EDA board, City Administrator Audrey Koopman Friday that he was not going to accept the job.

George Hebig, Chamber board chairman, said plans are moving forward to seek new applicants.

“We hope to have someone hired by April,” he said.

The half-time Chamber of Commerce position has been vacant since December, when Sara Kemp resigned to accept another position. Last month, the Tracy City Council voted to develop a job description for a combined EDA and Chamber manager position and offer the position to Rettmer. In early December, the Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors passed a resolution stating they were open to the combined city-chamber position, but weren't pushing for the change.