Sept. 28 edition letters to the editor

United We Dance volunteers offered sincere thanks

Many thanks go out to all the volunteers who helped with United We Dance on Sept. 14.

The Sherburne County Area United Way’s event was an afternoon and evening of fun and entertainment in the rain, but we still were able to raise more than $7,000.

The Teddy Bear Band delighted both young and old with songs about rain, and their mascot the “Panda” led us in dance and motions.

Our speed volunteer opportunity allowed families and community to come together and put together personal item bags for consumers with Great River Family Promise, Rivers of Hope, Big Lake Community Food Shelf, CAER and Anna Marie’s Alliance. There was one young boy who helped us tremendously, only to find out that he was without a home for a short time and could benefit from receiving a bag. He brought reality to the experience and reward to those who were able to help.

The evening entertainment was a competition between 11 venues in our service area, and there was definitely a competitive spirit present.

Thank you to all our venues and bands who supported the United We Dance Battle of the Bands, and thanks to Cowboy Jack’s for coming in first place along with their band, Acoustic Revolver.

We could not have pulled off this event without our volunteers — thank you for coming together to create a difference in the lives of our neighbors and friends who receive services from our locally funded nonprofits. —  Patti Hetrick, the chair of the Sherburne County Area United Way Board, and Joy Nadeau, executive director of Sherburne County Area United Way


Spending money  on ‘no parking’ signs ridiculous

Spending hundreds to thousands of dollars for “no parking” signs along one of the busiest thoroughfares in Elk River.

The fact that there isn’t a single business between School Street and St. Andrews Cemetery and not a single residence has direct access to said streets suggests one of our engineers might think twice about wasting the city’s money. They’re nothing more than an eye sore. — William  Kambeitz, Elk River



Relate to story of drug use taking over a person’s life

I began reading an article on your website Star News called “Addiction proved difficult to overcome.”

I really related to this story because I have two cousins that have done the same thing but I am still lucky to have them here with me today. It was very hard for their family to deal with their struggles, also it was hard for other family members including me.

One of the parents of the boy who died from a heroin overdose said their son made friends with this one kid, and that’s when everything started.

That is that exact same thing my whole family thought because all of a sudden one of my cousins brought up a friend’s name and no one was familiar with it.

We all just went along with it and soon enough he started to become different. Some of the ways he became different were he wasn’t spending as much time at home anymore.

He was always at his “new” friend’s house doing drugs. Day by day we all kept saying to ourselves “When will this nightmare end?” We didn’t know until that day that we waited for finally came.

My two cousins overcame their drug habits and found jobs and new and better friends to hangout with. Also they can enjoy their life and stay alive longer to help their mom and dad as they get older. — Josh Waters,  Princeton


Letter-writer has sympathy from   another citizen

I can sympathize with Mr. Kunza, but some in the city ended up with a worse deal the he did.

There are many who are still paying for street improvements and are now blessed with the franchise fee also. I fully understand that the fee will be refunded if we do the proper paperwork. However, a refund of $108 per year for the next four to five years hardly makes up for the $5,000 paid out in the previous five years.

I’m not complaining – after all I did get a new street with curb and gutter. I do, however, feel that the franchise fee was hastily pushed through and has many flaws in it (like Mr. Kunza’s complaint).

Many people complain about the fees and the unfairness of them, but when asked if they have complained to the city the standard answer is, “It won’t do any good, they will do whatever they want!” — Wally Fox, Elk River


Money to silence trains better spent on law enforcement 

I understand money may be spent to silence the train whistles.


If this money comes from my taxes, I want to vote on it. Our police force could use another police officer and he would not be paid $300,000 a year.

I had someone drive through my front yard Saturday night. I don’t think a silenced train whistle would have prevented that. — Susie Williams, Elk River