April Baumgarten joined the Grand Forks Herald May 19, 2015, and covers business and political stories. She grew up on a ranch 10 miles southeast of Belfield, where her family continues to raise registered Hereford cattle. She double majored in communications and history/political science at Jamestown (N.D.) College, now known as University of Jamestown. During her time at the college, she worked as a reporter and editor-in-chief for the university's newspaper, The Collegian. Baumgarten previously worked for The Dickinson Press as the Dickinson city government and energy reporter in 2011 before becoming the editor of the Hazen Star and Center Republican. She then returned to The Press as a news editor, where she helped lead an award-winning newsroom in recording the historical oil boom.
Have a story idea? Contact Baumgarten at 701-780-1248.
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Country star Dwight Yoakam will bring his "Guitars, Cadillacs" to Grand Forks. Yoakam will perform March 11 at the Chester Fritz Auditorium, according to a news release. The artist who has sold more than 25 million albums worldwide will perform with Brandy Clark, who has written songs for The Band Perry, Miranda Lambert and Kacey Musgraves. "Guitars, Cadillacs" was Yoakam's debut recording single, but he has recorded numerous other singles, including "Honky Tonk Man," "Suspicious Man" and "Streets of Bakersfield."
GRAFTON, N.D.—Leaders for a 60-year-old hospital in Grafton hope a $12 million addition will bring the facility into the modern era. Unity Medical Center plans to break ground on the three-story addition late next summer or in early fall on the west side of the current facility, CEO Alan O'Neil said this week. It's possible construction could wrap up in late 2019.
GRAND FORKS — Bitcoin's popularity is on the rise, and with it skepticism and excitement have mounted for the digital currency. Its value against the U.S. dollar has exploded in recent months. One bitcoin was worth about $780 a year ago today but is now worth more than $1,760. The currency finished its first week of trading with gains of about 17 percent as of Friday morning, Dec. 15.
GRAND FORKS — Two women who were raped at gunpoint as University of North Dakota students in 2013 have sued the landlord of the apartment complex in Grand Forks where the incident happened. Through attorneys, Nadia Campbell and Breanne Squire filed a lawsuit Thursday, Dec. 14, in Grand Forks District Court against CGV, claiming the Grand Forks company did not provide adequate security.
GRAND FORKS—A company that plans to build a $2.5 billion fertilizer plant near Grand Forks has applied for a six-month extension for several permits. Northern Plains Nitrogen (NPN) has sent a letter of intent to the city to extend its water and discharge permits, NPN Chief Operations Officer Larry Mackie said Wednesday. The city will provide water to the plant, which is expected to be built on a 320-acre site northwest of Grand Forks.
LANCASTER, Minn. — A decision to reduce hours at the Lancaster and Roseau ports of entry puts federal convenience ahead of the needs of the people, Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton said Wednesday, Dec. 13. Beginning Jan. 7, Roseau's port will close at 8 p.m instead of midnight, according to a Tuesday news release issued by U.S. Customs and Border Protection. Lancaster, which is open until 10 p.m., will close at 6 p.m. in the winter and 8 p.m. in the summer. The decision was rooted in a strategy to realign resources to other ports with more traffic.
GRAND FORKS — Leaders with Altru Health System said they would like to build a planned $250 million hospital at the current Grand Forks campus, but executives are not ruling out off-campus locations. "By far, the preference would be to be on this campus," Altru Chief Strategy Officer Dennis Reisnour said Thursday, Dec. 7, during an interview. "We're working to figure out how we can do that."
BOTTINEAU, N.D. — A Bottineau man has been acquitted of charges that he sexually abused a child multiple times. A jury found Heath Lester Vivier, born in 1986, not guilty Thursday, Dec. 7, in Bottineau County District Court. He initially appeared Dec. 7, 2015, in court on a Class AA felony charge of continuous sexual abuse of a child identified in court documents only by her initials.
Three people have been accused of housing a meth lab in an East Grand Forks apartment. James Marvin Sackett, 33, of East Grand Forks, and two Grand Forks residents, Joshua Clyde Roudebush, 24, and Sonya Lee Barbieur, 32, were each charged Friday in Polk County District Court with manufacturing methamphetamine, a first-degree felony. If convicted, they face a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison and a $1 million fine.
EDINBURG, N.D. — It's not uncommon for Dr. Charlotte Klose to drive 80 miles to see her patients. "We cover a huge area," she said. "I travel all the way to west of Langdon, N.D. I go south of Grand Forks to the Thompson, N.D., area." The Edinburg doctor travels all over eastern North Dakota making house calls, or rather barn calls. Klose is among a rare breed in rural America: large animal veterinarians. Vets play a key role in helping ranchers succeed. That often means long hours and being accessible at night, on weekends and during holidays.