Ryan Johnson has been a Forum reporter since 2012 and previously wrote for the Grand Forks Herald.
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WEST FARGO, N.D. — Mark Berntson got to be creative when his new house was being built here in 2000. "I thought, 'Oh my gosh, I can paint my walls and I can do whatever I want. And what do I really care about? I really care about the Vikings,' " he said, explaining why nearly every surface in his bedroom is purple and gold. That includes a painted Vikings team name that covers three walls, not to mention a Vikings lamp, chair and framed game-used jersey. He's single, so there wasn't a spouse around to tell him no, he said.
MOORHEAD, Minn. — Wayne Sander said things seemed busy at the Sam's Club in Moorhead since he got a job in the photo department just after Thanksgiving. That's why it came as a "complete shock" Thursday morning, Jan. 11, when he arrived for a 9 a.m. shift only to be told he and all other employees here will soon lose their jobs when the store closes.
DILWORTH, Minn., —This far western Minnesota town's hard stance on soft drinks has fizzled out after Dilworth civic leaders repealed a requirement for a special license to sell the beverages. City Administrator Peyton Mastera said council members unanimously voted Dec. 20 to scrap a rule on the books since 1963 that originally addressed establishments like convenience stores and parlors where fountain soda was sold.
WEST FARGO, N.D. — The grandmother of a 13-year-old girl was arrested on Thanksgiving Day after authorities said she harbored the runaway teenager and lied about it to police. West Fargo police reported shortly before 4 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 23, that Margaret Hansen, 53, was arrested on suspicion of harboring a runaway, hindering an investigation and providing false information. She was being held at the Cass County Jail.
FARGO—Even for small businesses here, Black Friday could be a better day for sales than Small Business Saturday. That's a main takeaway from a new national analysis of transactions at nearly 65,000 retailers in the U.S., including about 200 businesses in North Dakota, during the 2016 holiday shopping season.
MOORHEAD, Minn.—The broken bones Chris Bjur suffered from a 16-foot fall hurt the most financially. The Moorhead handyman was painting his parents' house near Kulm, N.D., in early June, when he slipped on the steel roof and slid feet-first toward the ground. He landed with his right foot on grass and left foot on the sidewalk, and knew it was serious when he saw his mangled left leg.
MOORHEAD, Minn. — Dan Gunderson used to do his job with a manual typewriter and edit tapes of his radio stories with a razor blade. Now, the Minnesota Public Radio news correspondent uses a computer, digital camera and smartphone, writing online versions of the work he records for a radio audience that also can be accessed anywhere, whether it's Dilworth or Kazakhstan.
MARSHALL, Minn.—A frozen food company is boosting its frozen pizza business with two recent acquisitions. Schwan's Co., which was founded in 1952 and is headquartered in Marshall, announced Monday, July 24, that it acquired Better Baked Foods and Drayton Foods from NE Foods Inc. It's the second acquisition in recent months as the company builds up its stake in the U.S. pizza market, according to a news release. Schwan's reported last month that it acquired MaMa Rosa's Pizza, a company based in Sidney, Ohio.
At first glance, viewers of Cathy Hummel's large printed canvases might notice an overhead view of a lake, complete with some major roads winding around the perimeter. Hummel sees something a little different. "I call it maps of memories because I think that's what happens when you look at it," she said. The interior designer launched her business Lake Overview in 2002 out of necessity for something she wanted but couldn't find—an aesthetically pleasing map of Minnesota's Pelican Lake where she spent summers with her grandparents.
MOORHEAD, Minn.—After 15 years working for Target, Doug Restemayer learned all too well how easily a gathering of employees can become a dreaded part of the job. "My whole day consisted of meetings," he said. "Not many of them are very productive." That's why Restemayer, the president and owner of beer and beverage distributor D-S Beverages Inc., said it's been "refreshing" to run a small company and structure it the way he wants—and that includes a demand to make meetings relevant and effective, not a necessary evil of the workday.