Saturday, June 22nd, 2024 Church Directory
FORMER MAYOR BILL KIFFMEYER (R) and current Mayor Tim Goenner (L) discussed options on where a new veterans war memorial should be located at the city park.
KELLI NEU received a plaque in late June honoring her for her outstanding leadership in City of Becker government.
LEE GILYARD of Clear Lake stood amongst the rubble that once was one of two of his 100-ft. grain silos following a severe storm that brought high winds, hail and heavy rains to the area in June. The other silo (in the background) had just the top part of the silo collapse to the ground. Gilyard also saw damage to trees, a cattle barn and a tractor from the Friday storm.

2013 Highlights Of The Year

The Sherburne County Citizen is set to put a bow on 2013 and start looking forward to the new year of 2014. 

As part of looking forward, the Citizen would like to look back on 2013 and highlight some of the more important stories that hit our pages this past year:
• Lefty Kleis and Adam Oliver were sworn-in as mayor (Kleis) and council member (Oliver) at the first council meeting of the new year. Within weeks, long-serving member Phil Knutson resigned his seat (moving out of area) and Rick Hendrickson was nominated to take his seat;
• Clear Lake resident Karla Stavos petitioned around the first of the year to have a road next to her property vacated by the township and she was met with disdain by her neighbors. Stavos eventually had a court hearing at Sherburne County but was denied her petition after the judge heard from the township board and numerous area citizens;
• Kari and Dan Westby received two tickets to attend the President’s Inaugural Ball in Washington D.C. in January, thanks to Dan’s National Guard rank;
• Lucinda (Cindy) Messman  took the oath of office in late January, taking over for outgoing Clerk Judy Shermak, who served Becker Twp. for over 26 years;
• Clear Lake firefighter Matt Lunser was named firefighter of the year in February while Steve Warren — who served the CLFD for over 39 years — retired;
• The Becker Twp. Board voted to allow for alternates to sit in for absent supervisors during the summer months. Supervisors Kyle Johnson, Jeff Lambert and Mark Limpert were set to spend many months out of the area and the board voted to name Joe Danielson and Jamie Johnson as alternates;
• Paul and Nicole Schmidt of Becker were recipients of a Neighborhood Heroes Sweepstakes to have their home renovated and restored to accommodate their eight-year-old son, Andrew, who suffers from PKS and BWS;
• Former Clear Lake City Mayor Bill Kiffmeyer led a contingency of citizens and business people in June interested in having a veteran war memorial erected at Goenner Park. The memorial was entirely funded by the Clear Lake Lions and the monument includes three monuments, some shrubs and a flag;
• Clear Lake Twp. resident Chris Norrbom, 47, killed his estranged wife, Janell then held authorities at bay for several hours before turning the gun on himself in a murder/suicide that occurred June 14;
• Assistant City Administrator/Community Development Director Kelli Neu received a plaque at a Becker City Council meeting in late June commemorating her for outstanding leadership of an appointed city official;
• Sixty-seven students from across Sherburne County attended a six-day firearm safety class in April instructed by several firearm safety trainers. The classes have been held twice a year and are held in Becker and Big Lake for persons over the age of 12;
• Twenty-eight students from the youth group of Mary of the Visitation Catholic Church in Becker and Big Lake held their second annual “Box City” event in Big Lake to raise awareness for homeless people in the state of Minnesota. The students constructed “homes” out of cardboard boxes and slept in them overnight in April. Temperatures were in the 30’s with snow on the ground. In mid-may, 29 youths from the Becker Evangelical Church did the same on the church office property and raised over $2,200;
• A Chaska man, Mark Edward Wetsch, was charged in May with robbing several banks in Minnesota including the 2011 the heist at Sherburne State Bank in Clear Lake;
• A new senior center was formed over the summer with Carol Bruhn heading up a committee of 10 people. The senior center is housed at Becker City Hall and offers a place for socializing, reading, playing cards and having a cup of coffee. They opened their doors officially in August;
• Becker firefighter Terry Foradory and his father, Terry Sr., were passing through the area of Moore, OK in May just after  a devastating tornado  wiped out many neighborhoods in that state. The Foradorys jumped to the aid of victims and local authorities and were instrumental in aiding those who had been severly injured;
• Michelle Remick of Brain Freeze Ice Cream started featuring “Jonny Pops” on her truck in late May with the hope the sales of the treats would benefit the local Becker Police non-profit fund;
• Severe storms rolled through the area in late June unleashing violent winds, hail and heavy rains that toppled trees, knocked out power and even brought down two silos on Lee Gilyard’s farm in Clear Lake;
• For just about all of 2013, Becker’s Sherco power plant has come under fire by area environmentalists who are urging the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission to get Xcel Energy to switch from coal-burning to natural gas or shut them down completely by the year 2020;
• Oakwood Church held an enormous rummage sale in July they titled, Blessing Tent, to aid the needy and disadvantaged with furniture, clothing, books, household wares and shoes;
• A family of three bears visited Tom Cotton and his wife in Becker in late July and pulled down the couple’s bird feeder to feast on the bird seed. The foraging went on for over 45 minutes before the bears disappeared into the woods;
• Dale and Linda Serfling of Becker re-opened the doors to Big D’s Pizza in July after getting out of the business in 2005 due to costs associated with Dale’s mounting medical bills from tumors he procured on his brain;
• In August, Clear Lake resident Diane Dvorak donated one of her kidneys to her son’s roommate, a complete stranger who had kidney disease. Dvorak is the mother of seven children and said she asked God to use her in a special way, in which he did;
• Soldier Leroy Weeres returned home from Afghanistan in August to throngs of supporters who lined the streets of Becker to welcome home a hero. Sgt. Weeres, who has served in the military for nearly 25 years and was on his second stint overseas, was escorted from the airport to his home by members of the Becker police and fire departments as well as the local Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Committee;
• Kari Nelson held a grand opening in mid-August to promote the opening of her new shop called the Becker Thrift Store along 1st Street next to the old JP’s Printing shop. Nelson decided to take her passion, her experience and her business sense and turn her pre-owned shopping business into a reality;
• Becker City Clerk Nancy Fiereck announced her retirement after 44 years of serving two communities. Fiereck was honored at a ceremony Aug. 20 and has since been replaced as clerk by Julie Blesi;
• Shannon and Wayne Marklowitz of Clear Lake continue to battle with U.S. Embassy bureaucrats as well as Liberian officials in their quest to adopt a severly deformed and blind boy named Shadrack. The Marklowitzes — who already have a home consisting of five children — are interested in getting medical treatment for the boy his family’s tribe considers “an evil spirit” and should be sacrificed due to his maladies;
• Clear Lake City Council accepted the resignation of Nikki Winkelman in September and have since replaced her with Connie Auchman who started in December;
• Pebble Creek Golf Course continues its maintenance efforts to re-establish the quality of the golf course. Bunkers were restored, trees removed, cart paths fixed and landscaping and irrigation systems were modified;
• A goose hunt was held in October on Pebble Creek that was aimed at reducing the number of birds taking up residence on the golf course. Five geese were bagged the first day of the hunt;
• Curt King of Becker overcame two “collapsed” knees to run a marathon in October just 17 months after his horrific injury;
• Janelle Lloyd of Becker has started a new Christmas tradition by providing a seven-foot, pre-lit Christmas tree to a needy family in the community with the hope they’ll reciprocate. The family she chose this year was Shannon and Wayne Marklowitz of Clear Lake;
• Becker Mayor Lefty Kleis was censured by the city council in December for verbally commenting on Golf Pro Troy Malo’s performance and practices at Pebble Creek Golf Course. With the censureship, Kleis was removed from serving on the personnel and golf committees;
• Kari Westby formed and organized a committee that eventually has the City of Becker named a Beyond the Yellow Ribbon city in the state of Minnesota. BTYR is an organization that networks to meet the needs of servicemen and women and their families while they are deployed across the world;