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News from the week of June 19, 2002

Six seek Miss Tracy title

Pageant switched to Saturday night

Practice began Monday night for the 2002 Miss Tracy Scholarship Pageant.

Katie Bauer, Emily Vandendriessche, Brittany Scott, Mai Vue, Kelly Laleman, and Brooke Averill are the candidates. The girls, all seniors at Tracy Area High School, will compete for $2,500 in scholarship money. The new Miss Tracy will earn a $1,300 scholarship. The first and second runner-ups will receive scholarships of $700 and $500 respectively.

The scholarship program will be staged Labor Day weekend during Tracy Box Car Days. However, in a departure from past tradition, Miss Tracy is scheduled Saturday evening instead of Sunday night. The change is being made to accommodate a Dennis Morgan concert planned for the high school gym Sunday night. The Miss Tracy pageant is scheduled 6:30 p.m. Saturday, with a Miss Tracy Alumni Tea set for 1:30 p.m.

Miss Tracy committee members include Jesse James and Sandy Fultz (directors), Vicki Nilius and Jen Kainz (choreographers), Colleen Schiller (Miss Tracy coordinator), and Sue (Gervais) Weiner, Ann (Stefanick) Struchen, Dona Daniels, Julie Rayman, Deb Schenkoske, Pam Peterson, Lori Hebig, and Mev Jackson.

As in the past, competition categories for Miss Tracy are: scholastic achievement, personal interview, performing arts, poise and appearance, and fitness routine.


Aquatic Center work progresses, but opening still uncertain

Hopes were sinking early this week that the Tracy Aquatic Center would be able to open Saturday, June 22, as announced last week.

Shorty Engel, pool administrator, indicated late Tuesday afternoon that it was unlikely that the pool would open this weekend. However, he couldn't announce a new target date or predict when the pool will open.

“It's frustrating but no one will give us a date when the pool will be complete and we can open.”

Engel attempted to get such a date from Rick Schaffer, the project manager for USAquatics late Tuesday afternoon, but was unsuccessful.

Engel said he like everyone else, would like to open the pool. Unfortunately, he said, the matter is beyond local control until the contractors complete the project. According to construction contracts, the new pool was to have been “substantial completion” by May 5.

The city has informed contractors that it intends to enforce a clause calling for an $800 a day in liquidated damages for each day the completion date runs past the time stipulated in the contract.

The erection of two large flume slides is the major unknown factor that is making it difficult to determine an opening date.

Work began putting together the stairway for one slide on Monday. Don Polzine, Tracy Public Works Director, said the slide contractor told him it would take two weeks to erect the two flume slides, with crews working seven days a week. A large crane is needed to hoist parts of the slide into place. Polzine said he has safety concerns about opening the aquatic center while a nearby construction crane lifted parts of a slide into place.

Engel says he would have to be assured that there were no safety problems for him to consider opening the aquatic center before the flume slides were completed. He unsuccessfully attempted to get an answer to that question Tuesday afternoon.


Community band invited to perform in Washington DC

The renown of the Tracy Community Band has spread all the way to Washington, DC.

The band has been invited to participate in the National Festival of the States concert series next year in Washington, DC. If the band elects to go, the group would perform several concerts in the Washington D.C. area.

Director Clint Peterson said that no decision has been made on whether to accept the invitation. But band members were enthusiastic when informed about the invitation, he said.

Peterson explained that the National Festival of States typically selects several groups from each state to perform in the concert series. Tracy was extended an invitation, in part, because of its membership in the Association of Concert Bands. The Tracy Community Band would be one of several performing groups representing Minnesota

The Mount Vernon Ladies Association and Anthony Williams, mayor of the District of Columbia, extended the invitation to the band.


College is popular with Class of 2002

What's in the future for Tracy Area High School's Class of 2002?

Most grads are headed to some kind of post-secondary education. Data from the high school guidance office shows that 75 of 93 grads have immediate plans to further their education.

A four-year college is the most popular choice. About half the class (47 students) intend to attend a four-year college. Thirty-three are enrolled at a public, four-year institution, with 14 planning to attend a private four-year college. Two grads listed plans for a two-year community college.

Technical college is the next most popular option, chosen by 26 grads.

Ten students intend to immediately join the work force, with three entering the military. Four students were undecided. Two graduates are AFS foreign exchange students who will be attending school following their return home.

None of the graduates listed marriage as being in their immediate plans.


Families give Prairie View high marks

Resident care at the Prairie View Healthcare Center rated high in a recent family survey.

Ninety-seven percent of survey respondents agreed that their loved one “was treated with the dignity and respect they deserve.” Ninety percent of families surveyed felt that staff spent an adequate amount of time with their loved one.

Heather Radke, a social worker at Prairie View, conducted the survey. Families were asked to respond to a series of 13 questions, and express any questions or concerns.

Thirty families, out of a possible 54, responded to the survey.

Eighty percent of the families felt they were well informed on issues related to their loved one. Thirteen percent felt they were not well informed.

Ninety-seven percent of survey respondents felt that resident-care plans were beneficial and helpful.

Tim Byrne, Prairie View administrator, was pleased with the survey results.


Tracy students return from FFA leadership camp

FFA members from the Tracy Area FFA Chapter “dove in” at the 2002 State Greenhand Leadership Conference (SGLC) held June 10-14 at Deep Portage near Hackensack, MN. Laura Lanoue, Jon Carter and Kyle Lessman participated in “The Deep Sea Adventure” and learned about opportunities in FFA as well as in agriculture.

The 2002-2003 Minnesota State Officers orchestrated the camp and presented workshops involving members. Some of the workshops discussed communications, FFA opportunities, Supervised Agricultural Experiences, the future of agriculture, and helping members find where they belong. The members actively participated in the workshops by creating skits, solving physical team challenges, and having a discussion/debate.

Greenhands, which are first-year FFA members, also learned about FFA basics and proper etiquette. Throughout the week, the members practiced escorting and table manners. Members conducted the sessions by playing the roles of the officers during opening and closing ceremonies, as well as performed flag raising and lowering ceremonies.