Three COVID Perspectives

The recent global pandemic had big impacts on just about every sector, from the neighborhood lemonade stand, to tourism spending, and the collection of an extra half-cent on taxable purchases by county government in Wisconsin.   

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Two Scoops! Dairy Month and Ice Cream Month

Every St. Croix Valley resident possessing a high Dairy IQ knows June is Dairy Month – not just in Wisconsin but nationally. Wisconsin’s dairy industry contributes an estimated $45.6 billion to the state’s economy each year. That’s more than the combined value of Florida citrus and Idaho potatoes.

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To the Class of 2021

Slow marches across elevated stages will soon play out at high schools in the St. Croix Valley. Graduation for the Class of 2021 has arrived. Finally. For some, the formality of receiving a diploma may seem like an eternity in the making.

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Small Business – Big Impacts

So what kind of impacts do small businesses make? There are an estimated 30.7 million of them in the U.S. or 99.9 percent of all businesses. Nearly 60 million people are employed by small businesses, representing 47.3 percent of all U.S. employees. The

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211 is a 24/7 Link to Assistance

The COVID-19 global pandemic has extracted its toll on many fronts – socially, emotionally, professionally, financially – and many more.  

Service agencies experienced COVID’s brunt, too. But there’s one thing about Wisconsin’s St. Croix Valley. Its agencies are abundant, sometimes to the point where bewilderment could likely set in while sorting through potential resources.

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Batter Up! Fish Fry Season in the Valley

A late winter season involving the term ‘batter’ arrived in the St. Croix Valley ahead of balls and gloves – fish fry season. OK, it’s really a Wisconsin classic, but residents of the St. Croix Valley can hold their own, whether it’s measured by selection, side orders, price, or per capita consumption. Pound for pound, valley residents enjoy their fish fries. Hot dog eating champ Joey Chestnut may not stand a chance against a local favorite when it comes to a plate of fish.

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Nothing Says Valentine’s Day Like $21.8 Billion

Due to the global pandemic, Valentine’s Day 2021 will look far different than in the past. But a pandemic won’t stop love birds from dropping almost $22 billion (with a “b”) in the U.S. to mark the occasion. As a reminder, consumer spending accounts for around 70 percent of the U.S. economy, sometimes referred to as gross domestic product, or GDP.

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Into the Future, not Back

December’s holidays were marked with the return of movie favorites on cable TV. The sci-fi classic, Back to the Future, was enjoyed one more time.

For the benefit of young adults who completely missed Back to the Future on the big screen or tablet screen in more modern time, Michael J. Fox plays 17-year old Marty McFly who travels back to 1955 from 1985 by way of a DeLorean automobile time machine

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The Grinch Shops ‘Small’

At least one elusive Grinch in the St. Croix Valley was puzzled to see his likeness on display in Big Box retail stores on the first weekend of October. Inside the Big Box, the Grinch action figure was joined by the Jolly Old Elf, a reindeer named Rudolph, a beagle named Snoopy, a Nutcracker Soldier, and a family of snow people, formerly referred to as snowmen (women). All were there a full month (28 days) before Halloween.

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Veterans Day 101

Veterans Day approaches. Unlike Memorial Day which pays tribute to those who died serving in the military, Veterans Day honors all who served. The younger generation may appreciate a backgrounder on the topic while the older, seasoned generation may use it as a review.

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Halloween Spending: Frightening

What does Somoa, Grenada, and Barbados have in common with Halloween? It’s almost certain calendars in these countries mark October 31st without the notation of Halloween. Just another day in paradise for them. Economists meanwhile like to use a country’s gross domestic product (GDP)

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Three Claps For Football

High school football returned to Wisconsin’s St. Croix Valley. Old rivalries renewed. Pep bands, cheer squads, parents and families, boosters, and concessionaires. All are ready. If visiting fans are unsure of the location of the opponent’s playing field, they just look for the distant glow of lights. Pre-game and post-game, students and fans are bound to bring badly-needed business to local restaurants and pubs.

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The Rivers

An unnamed walker on Hudson, Wisconsin’s old toll road one Saturday morning felt lucky to bump into a face from the past. How early in the morning? The exact time was insignificant, but early enough for it to be darker than it was lighter. Walkers at this hour likely subscribe to beating other walkers and runners who sleep past 6:00 a.m.

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Cruel, Cruel COVID Summer

In 1983, the all-female musical group Bananarama proved to be prophetic when Cruel Summer was released. The group did not envision a global pandemic decades later, but 2020 has indeed proven to be a Cruel, Cruel (COVID-19) Summer. The same can be said for last Spring. And likely the upcoming Autumn. And beyond.

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On This Fourth: Reflection

At a residence in St. Croix County a couple weeks ago, the owner decided it was time to replace a tired old American flag that flies from a pole attached to the garage. The old flag had truly seen better days, and a few more rain showers will work the fold lines out of the new one.

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Got Milk? It’s Wisconsin’s Brand

At 70+ miles per hour, Wisconsin’s welcome signs are but a blur to motorists. The signs are as iconic to Wisconsin as beer, cheese, and the Green Bay Packers. But did you know? They measure 10 feet tall by 11 feet wide and contain three massive logs depicting the pillars of Wisconsin’s economy, Recreation, on the left

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Skyward and Forward

For those looking skyward on May 6th, a military transport plane with a fighter jet on either wing flew over several hospitals in the Twin Cities metro area in a salute to the brave healthcare workers on the frontlines of the COVID pandemic. The mission was called

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