Highway 53 bridge opening delayed

Though Bridge Daze celebrating the new Highway 53 bridge between Virginia and Eveleth will go on this week, motorists won’t cross the new tallest bridge in Minnesota until mid-September. On Tuesday, the Minnesota Department of Transportation announced that weather delayed their target opening date this week. Barring setbacks, officials hope to open the bridge to… Read More →

What’s in a name? Cleveland-Cliffs is back

Cliffs Natural Resources is now Cleveland-Cliffs. That means that the grand old man of American iron mining now wears his old duds. Lourenco Goncalves , Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, said, “The historical name Cleveland-Cliffs is synonymous with our strong heritage, and is the perfect one for our next era of growth. As we did… Read More →

Highway 53 bridge name contest down to final vote

Nearly complete, the Highways 53 and 135 rerouting project between the Mesabi Iron Range towns of Virginia, Eveleth and Gilbert will be Northern Minnesota’s largest, most expensive infrastructure project of our generation. The showpiece of the whole thing is a new Highway 53 bridge spanning the Rouchleau Pit outside Virginia. That bridge is almost done…. Read More →

Iron Rangers say ‘porketta,’ Arby’s says ‘porchetta’

While language is probably the most important hallmark of a culture, food is a very close second. Everyone’s gotta eat, and what you eat tells a lot about where you live and which traditions you carry through the generations. Here on the Mesabi Iron Range in Northern Minnesota, a melting pot of cultures made a… Read More →

A summer storm brings peace

We live in times of constant stress and outrage. The ubiquity of media means that anyone from a kindergartner to a retiree can feel the weight of the world on their shoulders. Last Thursday, we had a summer storm blow through Balsam Township. Not the worst we’ve seen, but a real whipper. A healthy basswood… Read More →

Former Magnetation brass buy Canadian iron mine

Tacora Resources, Inc., a newly formed mining company based in Grand Rapids, Minnesota, just acquired the assets to the Scully Mine in Wabush, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada. Cliffs Natural Resources closed the Scully Mine in 2014. The company left behind unfunded pensions and considerable animosity among the rural population of this small town in Labrador…. Read More →

On Victor Power and my big project

In this post I will explain why I’m going to be blogging less in the foreseeable future. Still blogging and writing, just less that you’ll see … for now. Stay tuned as I explain. In my job as a college public speaking instructor I teach principles of persuasion. I cite the ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle… Read More →

Itasca County A-OK with ATVs along most county roads

Starting July 15, Itasca County will allow all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) to drive on the right-of-ways along county roads. The Grand Rapids Herald-Review reported the county board action in a June 28 story. The ordinance comes after a long debate within county government. Some see danger allowing ATVs so close to active traffic. Others see merits…. Read More →

Things You Will See at Your First Iron Range 4th of July

Most every little hamlet in Minnesota claims some special Fourth of July tradition. After all, Minnesota was born in the patriotic fervor preceding the Civil War, swaddled in the stars and stripes and raised to feed, build and Bob Dylan-ize America. A territory founded on the cornerstone of community (and large, powerful railroads), the Fourth… Read More →

West Range Itasca County race takes shape

Last week I reported a vacancy on the Itasca County Board after Mark Mandich resigned his District 5 seat on the western Mesabi Iron Range. Two candidates emerged over the past few days. Ben DeNucci Nashwauk Mayor Ben DeNucci said he was running for the Itasca County Board. DeNucci owns a bar in Nashwauk and… Read More →