‘Bike prom’ takes its last lap at the velodrome

By EVAN FROST Minnesota Public Radio News
BLAINE, Minn. (AP) — As of recently, “bike prom” is no more. Cyclists from across the country flocked to the National Sports Center Velodrome for the last Fixed Gear Classic tournament and a chance to ride one of only three outdoor wooden tracks in the country.
Thirty years of Minnesota winters have taken their toll and the velodrome is set to close at the end of the year.
“The track got old, that’s the problem,” director Bob Williams said. “We can’t stay ahead of the repairs.”
The German-designed track was built in 1990 to host the Olympic Festival and the national championships. The turns are banked at 43 degrees and the straightaways at 15. Forty-two miles of African Afzelia wood make up the surface of the only outdoor, wood-planked velodrome in the western hemisphere, Minnesota Public Radio News reported.
For most of the last decade, the Fixed Gear Classic has been a summer staple at the velodrome. The invitational tournament draws some of the country’s best cyclists for two days of racing and camaraderie.
“This is it. This is the bike prom,” coach and tournament organizer Linsey Hamilton said. The track and the community are a core piece of her identity. The sensation of flying down the track is an experience every rider can bond over.
“It’s like having a name spelled you know weird,” Hamilton said. “And you find somebody with your same name and you go, ‘oh my gosh, we have this thing in common and we’ve never met but we can talk about it.'”
Cyclists bond over the intensity of the sport. The fastest racers can go upwards of 40-miles-per-hour in sprint races. But the track isn’t just for the ultra fast. Hamilton founded the VeloKids program, which teaches kids ages 9-12 to safely race the track in a four-week summer camp.
Athletes who got their start on the NSC Velodrome have gone on to race around the world. Last year, then 17-year-old Peter Moore of St. Paul was named to the USA Junior World Championship team.
Over three decades of racing on the track, one rider hasn’t missed a season. Mark Stewart wore the number 30 this year in honor of years he’s attended. He came out to watch the track being built and took a class as soon as he could. Since then, he’s watched hundreds of riders fall in love with the sport and the community.
“The Velodrome has put a spark in a lot of kids I think, and they get excited about cycling and then hopefully they continue to do it as a lifetime sport,” Stewart said. “Seeing that possibility go away is just really disappointing and a huge loss for the state.”
Over the years, the community has raised money to fund continual maintenance of the track, but the National Sports Center has decided to end its run. The land will be used as a green space by the Spring Lake Park school district.
Efforts to fund a proposed Minnesota Cycling Center with an indoor track and multi-purpose community event center closer to the metro have yet to yield any results.
The 2019 season will extend into the fall, with races every Thursday night.
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Information from: Minnesota Public Radio News, http://www.mprnews.org

Savage fire chief resigns after 3 months on the job

SAVAGE, Minn. (AP) — Savage Fire Chief Andrain Roach has resigned after only three months on the job.
The Star Tribune reports Roach cited what he called unrealistic expectations from city leaders and a general lack of support that hindered efforts to modernize the department.
Roach says in his resignation letter that inadequate staffing levels citywide — paired with round-the-clock demands — have taken a “mental, physical and emotional toll.”
The Savage City Council accepted Roach’s resignation at Monday night’s meeting without discussion. Deputy Fire Chief Andrew Slama was tapped to replace him as interim chief.
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Information from: Star Tribune, http://www.startribune.com

Wisconsin leads nation in family farm bankruptcies

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Wisconsin continues to top the nation in family farm bankruptcies.
The American Farm Bureau Federation says that July 2018 through June 2019, Wisconsin farmers filed 45 Chapter 12 bankruptcies. Data show the total was five fewer than the previous 12-month period but still No. 1 in the nation.
In Minnesota, bankruptcy filings increased by 11, to 31.
North Dakota had nine filings, up one from the previous period. South Dakota increased by 12, to 13.
The Journal Sentinel reports that with depressed milk prices besetting Wisconsin’s thousands of dairy operations, the state has led the country in farm bankruptcies in recent years.
Ronald Wirtz, regional outreach director of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, also has pointed to Wisconsin’s smaller average farm size as a factor.
, according to the Farm Bureau, which used U.S. Courts data to compile the report.
From July 2018 through June 2019, Wisconsin farmers filed 45 bankruptcies under Chapter 12, a section of the U.S. bankruptcy code that provides financially troubled family farmers with a streamlined path to repay all or part of their debts.
The Wisconsin total was five fewer than the previous 12-month period, according to the Farm Bureau, which used U.S. Courts data to compile the report.
Kansas, meanwhile, saw Chapter 12 filings increase by 13, to 39. In Minnesota, filings increased by 11, to 31.
With depressed milk prices besetting Wisconsin’s thousands of dairy operations, the state has led the country in farm bankruptcies in recent years. Ronald Wirtz, regional outreach director of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, also has pointed to Wisconsin’s smaller average farm size as a factor.
Wisconsin also has lots of farms — the 11th highest total in the nation, data from the 2017 U.S. Census of Agriculture shows. Even accounting for the relatively large number of farms here, however, Wisconsin’s farm bankruptcy rate is among the highest in the country.
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Information from: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, http://www.jsonline.com

Reports say stolen Hy-Vee account information being sold

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — An Iowa-based grocery chain says it’s aware of reports that hacked customer account information is being sold online.
The Des Moines Register was the first to report that credit and debit card information of some Hy-Vee customers is being sold on an internet site for $17 to $35 apiece.
Hy-Vee issued a statement to station KCCI saying it is aware of reports of the stolen information being sold and is working with payment card networks to identify the cards and work with issuing banks.
Hy-Vee acknowledge earlier this month that it detected unauthorized activity on some of its payment processing systems linked to card payments at Hy-Vee restaurants, fuel pumps and drive-thru coffee shops. The company doesn’t believe the breach extended to payments systems used inside its grocery stores, drugstores and convenience stores.
Hy-Vee operates more than 240 retail stores across Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, South Dakota and Wisconsin.
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Information from: The Des Moines Register, http://www.desmoinesregister.com

Son of ex-NFL player accused of murdering parents arrested

The Associated Press
LONG PRAIRIE, Minn. (AP) — Authorities say the son of a former NFL lineman wanted on murder charges in Minnesota for the shooting of his parents was arrested Saturday in Mexico.
The Todd County Sheriff’s Office says 22-year-old Dylan John Bennett was arrested on second degree murder charges at a hotel Saturday in Cancun.
Authorities say Bennett had contacted County Sheriff Steve Och earlier in the day to say that he would turn himself in to the FBI. But a sheriff’s office statement said the arrest by Mexican authorities came before the information could be communicated to them.
“The FBI is taking him into custody now and will transport him to Minnesota in the coming days,” the statement said.
The bodies of 63-year-old Barry Bennett and his wife, Carol, were found Wednesday at their home in Long Prairie, a town of about 3,500 people 124 miles (200 kilometers) northwest of Minneapolis. Their deaths were ruled homicide from gunshots.
A criminal complaint says Dylan Bennett’s car was at the scene with an empty box for a 9 mm handgun inside, along with ammunition.
Investigators believe the Bennetts were killed Monday. The complaint said Carol Bennett, who would’ve been 64 on Thursday, was shot multiple times in the back and torso. Barry Bennett, 63, was shot multiple times in the torso and head.
According to the criminal complaint, Barry Bennett told the Todd County Sheriff’s Office in December that Dylan had expressed thoughts about killing his parents while he was in a mental health treatment facility.
The criminal complaint outlines how authorities tracked the family in recent days.
Barry Bennett was seen Monday in Long Prairie at about noon. Earlier Monday, Dylan Bennett was seen driving his car during a bank transaction in which a large sum of cash was withdrawn from the Bennetts’ account, the complaint said.
Carol Bennett’s credit and debit cards were used in Wisconsin, Illinois and Ohio on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. Her car was found in Columbus, Ohio. Dylan Bennett had a plane ticket for a flight from Columbus to Cancun.
Barry Bennett played 11 seasons with the New Orleans Saints, the New York Jets and Minnesota Vikings.
The Star Tribune reported Bennett had retired from teaching physical education in Long Prairie. Superintendent Jon Kringen said Bennett rarely talked about his NFL career unless someone asked.

Fargo aims to replace replica of the Statue of Liberty

FARGO (AP) — Fargo authorities are looking to replace an 8-foot-tall replica of the Statue of Liberty that was stolen last month.
Mayor Tim Mahoney tells KFGO that authorities haven’t had any luck finding the statue and he doesn’t think it will be recovered.
The statue had about 300 pounds of metal that Mahoney thinks could have been chopped up and scrapped. He says the city is focused on finding a replacement.
The statue was presented to the city nearly 70 years ago by the Lions Club.

One man injured in two-vehicle crash near Watford City

WATFORD CITY – A Killdeer man was injured when his vehicle and a semi truck crashed on U.S. Highway 85, 15 miles south of Watford City, on Saturday.
The North Dakota Highway Patrol said Frankie Brown, 27, driver of a 2007 GMC Yukon, received non-life-threatening injuries in the crash. A passenger in his vehicle, a 19-year-old man from Tomball, Texas, whose name was not released, was not injured. The driver of a 1993 Kenworth semi truck, Steven Outcalt, 54, Watford City, also was not injured.
Outcalt was going north on the highway and Brown was going the same direction in front of Outcalt’s vehicle, according to a news release. Brown failed to yield and began a U-turn on Highway 85 to turn back south. Outcalt’s vehicle struck the driver’s side of Brown’s vehicle. Both vehicles entered the ditch and then came to a stop.
The crash happened about 10 a.m. and the highway was shut down for about 30 minutes while emergency crews treated patients and cleared the scene. Brown was taken to the McKenzie County Hospital in Watford City for his injuries. Charges are pending against Brown. The Highway Patrol is still investigating the crash.

Wisconsin leads nation in family farm bankruptcies

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Wisconsin continues to top the nation in family farm bankruptcies.
The American Farm Bureau Federation says that July 2018 through June 2019, Wisconsin farmers filed 45 Chapter 12 bankruptcies. Data show the total was five fewer than the previous 12-month period but still No. 1 in the nation.
In Minnesota, bankruptcy filings increased by 11, to 31.
North Dakota had nine filings, up one from the previous period. South Dakota increased by 12, to 13.
The Journal Sentinel reports that with depressed milk prices besetting Wisconsin’s thousands of dairy operations, the state has led the country in farm bankruptcies in recent years.

UH-Arizona matchup promises offensive fireworks

McDonald, Taylor put up big numbers in ’18

By KALANI TAKASE

The Associated Press

HONOLULU — Arizona’s season-opening matchup against the University of Hawaii will be a study in contrasting offensive styles.

While both teams ranked in the top 50 nationally in total offense in 2018, the Wildcats did a lot of their damage on the ground, averaging 202.4 rushing yards per game, which led the Pac-12. The Rainbow Warriors’ pass-heavy attack, meanwhile, aired it out at a clip of 310.3 yards per game, tops in the Mountain West.

Arizona running back J.J. Taylor and Hawaii quarterback Cole McDonald are expected to take center stage when the teams meet today for the first time since 2016.

Taylor, a 5-foot-6, 185-pound redshirt junior, ran for 1,434 yards last season, good for seventh nationally. It was the fourth-highest single-season rushing performance in Wildcats history.

McDonald, a 6-foot-4, 220-pound junior, finished eighth nationally in passing yards (3,875) and sixth in passing touchdowns (36). He threw for over 300 yards seven times and eclipsed the 400-yard mark three times last season.

“The scary part about this guy, McDonald, is he had a great year last year … and he’s coming back this year bigger and stronger, so they’ve got some weapons offensively and defensively, but I think they’ve got a quarterback that’s as good as probably there is in the country,” Arizona second-year coach Kevin Sumlin said.

McDonald has been named to the preseason watch lists for the Manning, Maxwell, Davey O’Brien and Johnny Unitas Golden Arm awards. Taylor is also on the Maxwell Award watch list, along with the Doak Walker Award.

Hawaii coach Nick Rolovich said slowing down Taylor and the Wildcats will require discipline.

“This is about all-out effort to the ball, this is about good tackling, this is about getting them down and seeing if we can get some takeaways because if they make you miss, they have the ability to take it as far as they need to go,” Rolovich said.

The Rainbow Warriors are coming off an 8-6 record and their first winning season since 2010.

Arizona went 5-7 in 2018 and is tabbed for a fifth-place finish in the Pac-12 South.

A few more things to look for when the Wildcats and Rainbow Warriors meet:

Continuity Counts

Not only does UH return 20 starters from a year ago — which ties them for the most in the nation with the quartet of Ball State, Indiana, Michigan State and Oregon — it also managed to go through the offseason without any turnover on its coaching staff.

Among the new additions to the Arizona staff this year is running backs coach DeMarco Murray, who played seven years in the NFL. Murray played his college ball at Oklahoma, where Sumlin served as co-offensive coordinator in 2007 when the Sooners won 11 games, including the Fiesta Bowl.

Tribute To Tomey

Dick Tomey, who coached at both Hawaii and Arizona, will be honored today. Tomey passed away in May at the age of 80 after a battle with lung cancer. Several of Tomey’s family members will be in attendance and Arizona players will wear a “DT” sticker on their helmets in his honor.

Tomey went 63-46-3 in 10 seasons at Hawaii (1977-86) and also served as special teams coordinator in 2011. After leaving for Arizona in 1987, Tomey coached 14 seasons with the Wildcats (1987-00), led them to seven bowl appearances and finished as the school’s winningest coach with a record of 95-64-4.

You Again

The Wildcats will open against the Rainbow Warriors for the third time in program history and are seeking their fourth win in Honolulu in as many tries. They have won all five previous meetings in the series, including a 47-28 win in Tucson the last time the teams met on Sept. 17, 2016. The two also met in a season opener in 1952, when Arizona hosted Hawaii and won 57-7, and in 1998, when the Wildcats made their last visit to Aloha Stadium and came away with a 27-6 win.

Early Start

Today’s opener will mark the earliest start to a season for both programs.

The teams will open the 2020 season against each other in Tucson.

Hawaii will take on two more Pac-12 opponents, Oregon State and No. 13 Washington, in the coming weeks.

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COLLEGE FOOTBALL ON TV

Today 6 a.m.—Villanova at Colgate, CBSSN

9 a.m.—Youngstown St. vs. Samford, ESPN

1 p.m.—Miami vs. No. 8 Florida, ESPN

4:30 p.m.—Arizona at Hawaii, CBSSN

No Sherburne County expansion for immigration holds

ELK RIVER, Minn. (AP) — Sherburne County’s jail won’t be expanding to take more immigration detainees.
The county earlier this year submitted a proposal to the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement to hold an estimated 500 immigration detainees.
County Commissioner Felix Schmiesing tells the St. Cloud Times the county’s proposal didn’t meet the criteria. But ICE spokesman Shawn Neudauer also tells the Times that ICE’s request for proposals was withdrawn.
Schmiesing said Sherburne County’s jail, the state’s second-larger, will continue to contract with ICE under its current arrangement for around 300 beds a day.
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Information from: St. Cloud Times, http://www.sctimes.com