Friday, May 31, 2019

(VIDEO) Graduation

**Here's a little video from the end of the graduation ceremony tonight:

It's been a very busy day. Plenty of work to do that kept me away from blogging. We have a busy weekend ahead of us too!!

And don't miss the special graduation pages (pages 6 to 13) in this week's Bonanza Valley Voice newspaper!


Thursday, May 30, 2019

Baseball playoffs

The B-B-E Jaguars baseball team is advancing to the winner's bracket final in the Section 6A tournament! For the second year in a row!

In the afternoon game, the Jaguars beat Upsala/Swanville Area 3-1. Then in the evening game they won and gritty fashion by a 3-2 score over Border West (17-3). Senior Payton VanBeck pitched a complete game in the nightcap. I managed to get video of the final out and will post that later tonight.

In the bottom of the seventh with the Jaguars nursing a 3-2 lead, Border West started off with back-to-back singles. VanBeck then pitched a strikeout for the first out. And what a huge out it was! What followed was a beauty to take in, as the senior left hander threw two final strikeouts to end the game. He finished with 10 strikeouts, two walks and six hits with one earned run. Helping the cause was five stolen bases by B-B-E compared to just one by the Buccaneers.

The Border West game featured two senior pitchers both going all seven innings; Border West's Sam Adelman, a senior at Clinton-Graceville-Beardsley, pitched 113 pitches while taking a hard-luck loss. B-B-E's Payton VanBeck threw 115 pitches.

Also noteworthy: Border West had seven seniors in their starting lineup. B-B-E had four senior starters tonight. Border West has just two juniors on their roster, and B-B-E has one. Border West, the QRF's No. 6-ranked team in Class 1A, is a second-year baseball co-op between the schools of C-G-B, Wheaton Area and Herman-Norcross. They are the two-time defending Pheasant Conference champions.

Jackson Peter, a junior, pitched a complete game against USA, who later pounded West Central Area 15-1 in their evening elimination game. USA advance to next week's action with a 14-7 record.

*Below, watch the final out recorded tonight in the bottom of the seventh plus the post-game huddle:

**If you've got a little time on your hands, take in this five-minute long video showing the final part of last year's game with Border West, which took place in the exact same spot in the Section 6A tournament bracket...the Jaguars won 3-1 in that game for a 3-0 start in the playoffs:

Next in the playoffs: the Jaguars (12-9) play at 5 p.m. next Tuesday, June 4 at Minnewaska Area. Their opponent will be a team out of the north half of Section 6A. That opponent will be the undefeated team out of the north half Section 6A. *Update: that opponent next Tuesday will be the No. 1 seed in Sub-Section 6A-North, the New York Mills Eagles. They defeated Brandon-Evansville tonight and are 16-3 on the season. Earlier today, New York Mills edged Parkers Prairie 3-2 in eight innings. The Eagles went 12-2 in the Park Region Conference this season to finish one game out of first place behind champion Wadena-Deer Creek.

Area baseball playoff scores on May 30:
Brandon-Evansville 11, Bertha-Hewitt/Verndale 3
Border West 3, West Central Area 0 (opening-game of the day)
Osakis 14, Sauk Centre 10 (Mainstreeters went 1-2 in Section 6AA and finish 10-13 overall)
Annandale 8, Royalton 4 (Royals, who will join the CMC next year, finish 14-8)
Fairmont 2, New London-Spicer 1
Maple Lake 6, Litchfield 5 (HUGE win for the Irish over the top seed in the 15-team Section 5AA; the Dragons had hopes of state according to the Willmar newspaper but went 1-2 in their playoffs)
Pierz 4, St. Cloud Cathedral 1 (CMC champion Pierz stays in the Section 6AA winner's bracket and is 3-0 so far in the playoffs)
Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City 2, Pipestone Area 0 (Falcons stay alive with an elimination bracket win in Section 3AA)

Area fastpitch playoff results on May 29/30:
Randolph 7, Kimball Area 0 (Cubs lose in the Section 4A championship game after coming out of the loser's bracket)
Norwood-Young America 5, Maple Lake 1
N-YA 4, Maple Lake 2 (Central Minnesota Conference champion Irish fall in the Section 5AA championship series; they were state runners-up in 2017 and state champions in 2018)
West Central Area 15, Frazee 11
New York Mills 13, WCA 0 (NYM Eagles win the Section 6A title for the seventh year in a row; they won the Class 1A state title in 2017 and 2018)

Also, Pierz, runners-up in the CMC, lost 6-2 to St. Cloud Cathedral on Tuesday this week after picking up four wins in the Section 6AA playoffs. They finish 19-7 overall after going 11-3 in their last-ever trip through the CMC schedule. Next fall they join the Granite Ridge Conference. St. Cloud Cathedral then went 1-1 against Annandale in the Section 6AA championship series to finish as runners-up.

And thank you once again to our local business partners! They are a huge part of the Bonanza Valley Voice newspaper's sports department. Without their loyal support, there would be no newspaper sports department.

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Section track and field, sub-section baseball

Updates will be posted here today from Fergus Falls and later from Morris. Section 6A track and field action gets underway at 10:30 a.m. at the FF high school.

*Just got this news early this morning on my e-mail: in golf news, B-B-E boys' golf team member Brady Schwinghammer qualified for the Section 5A finals. He shot a 93 on day one of the tournament, which took place yesterday in Willmar.

**Afternoon update: Blake Goodall advanced from preliminaries to the Section 6A finals in the 100 open.

More Jaguars have qualified for the finals as well, updates to follow.

Also competing in the Section 6A finals: Kenzie Thieschafer in the shot put, Allisa Knight in both the long and triple jumps and Ryan Schwinghammer in the long jump.

**Update!! Blake Goodall advances to the Class 1A state meet!! He took second place in the 100 open finals with a time of 11.34 seconds.

It's been a very fun afternoon at Otter Stadium with the Jaguars. Sophomore Allisa Knight earned a medal (fifth place, 33-8) in the triple jump; while breaking her school-record jump (33-4) set in 2018 at the same meet.

Goodall later took third place in the 200 open and earned his second section medal of the day.

**From Morris, the B-B-E Jaguars baseball team had a 3-1 lead in the sixth inning this afternoon against USA.

**Here's video from Fergus Falls...the first video clip I shot for the day:

**More video from the section track and field meet in Fergus Falls....shot early in the afternoon during the triple jump event:

*****Also, the baseball playoffs are on Smooth Magic 107 FM of Glenwood. The first game is at 2:30 p.m. between our B-B-E Jaguars baseball team and the Upsala/Swanville Area Patriots.

And thank you to our local business sponsors of the Bonanza Valley Voice sports department and our coverage of the B-B-E Jaguars!

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Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Blue Jackets state-bound

The Minnewaska/B-B-E Blue Jackets girls' golf team punched their ticket to the Class 2A state tournament on Tuesday. They won the Section 3AA title by a wide margin over Marshall Area, the defending section champion.

B-B-E's Jacqueline Gossen finished in a tie for fourth place individually.

More information was published in the May 30 issue of the Bonanza Valley Voice newspaper.

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Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Baseball playoff opener

With four innings in the book, the B-B-E Jaguars baseball team has a 5-0 lead against No. 7-seeded St. John's Prep.

Final score: B-B-E 7, St. John's Prep 0.

The Jaguars (10-9) advance to the sub-section semifinals and play next on Thursday, May 30 at 2:30 p.m. at Chizek Field in Morris. The opponent will be Upsala/Swanville Area.

**Here's video from tonight's game:

  • THANK YOU to our local business partners who help sponsor the Bonanza Valley Voice newspaper's sport coverage of the B-B-E Jaguars!

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(VIDEO) Way back to 2013

Here's video from the B-B-E elementary school auxiliary gym (it's really rough video) on May 7, 2013. That day, the B-B-E high school speech team and head coach Lucy Lloyd hosted a sixth grade speech meet for Mr. Hadley and Mrs. Halvorson's sixth grade classes.

Check it out...

And six years later...they're ready for graduation! Time flies when you're having fun and enjoying life.

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Monday, May 27, 2019

Baseball playoffs

The No.2-seeded B-B-E Jaguars baseball team will host the playoff opener on Tuesday this week.

Admission to the Sub-Section 6A-South quarterfinal round is $8 for adults and $5 for students. Game time is 5 p.m. at Saints Field in Elrosa. The opponent will be No. 7-seeded St. John's Prep.

And speaking of baseball...
Here's some more amateur baseball scores from Memorial Day weekend:

Spring Hill won 7-1 at Farming on Sunday.
Other Sunday scores: New Munich 13, Roscoe 1; Lake Henry 11, Greenwald 4; Meire Grove 3, Richmond 0;
And other Saturday scores: Meire Grove 11, Farming 2; Roscoe 7, Greenwald 1; Richmond 7, New Munich 1.

With a 4-1 record, Spring Hill is now in first place alone in the Stearns County League-North division. Meire Grove sits a half game out of first at 3-1. In third place is Elrosa with a 3-2 mark. New Munich is in fourth place (1-4), while Greenwald is in fifth at 0-4.


Sunday, May 26, 2019

Memorial Day programs

Click on the link to go to the Bonanza Valley Voice website...which has information about upcoming Memorial Day programs (tomorrow) in Brooten and Belgrade:

This information was published on page one of the May 16 and May 23 issues of the Bonanza Valley Voice newspaper.

Also just posted tonight at the Voice website is elementary spring concert video from May 15.

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(VIDEOS) Subsection playoffs

Below, catch action of B-B-E sophomore Ryan Young clearing the bar in the pole vault at the Sub-Section 6A-21 meet on Thursday at the University of Minnesota-Morris campus.

Ryan Young finished in the top eight at subsections but narrowly missed out on a trip to the Section 6A meet.

*Below, video from the bottom of the fifth inning of Thursday's sub-section playoff game between the B-B-E Jaguars fastpitch team and Upsala.

Not much blogging this weekend...lots of great weather to enjoy! And the garden keeps calling...time to get back out there.

In Stearns County League action on Saturday afternoon, the Elrosa Saints amateur baseball team lost 3-2 for the second game in a row. This time they were stung by the Lake Henry Lakers.

Spring Hill now leads the SCL-North division with a 3-1 record going into their game with Farming today.

*And for anyone paying close attention, you'll notice that elementary concert video from May 15 hasn't been posted yet on our Voice website. Hopefully I'll get to that tomorrow.

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Saturday, May 25, 2019

Big Grove Lutheran church

Big Grove Lutheran church is holding a special Memorial Day dinner, silent auction and cash raffle on Monday, May 27. Below are details that were published on page one of the May 16 and May 23 issues of the Bonanza Valley Voice newspaper.

The Big Grove Lutheran church WELCA group will serve a Memorial Day dinner with Silent Auction from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Monday, May 27 in the church basement. A silent auction will take place from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., and that includes over 300 donated items from very generous families and our awesome business community.
 We will serve BBQs, salad, chips, pickles and bars with lemonade and coffee provided. The meal is free-will offering, and the big cash raffle to follow after 1:30 p.m. See more on page 10.

The Big Grove Lutheran church family and extended family gathers for a large group photo outside the church building on July 23, 2017.

You can watch a short video clip taken on July 23, 2017 at Big Grove Lutheran church during their 150th anniversary celebration worship (short link):

Here's the Bonanza Valley Voice photo gallery from that special day (short link):

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Baseball seeded No. 2

Now it's official!

The B-B-E Jaguars baseball team earned the No. 2 playoff seed for the upcoming Sub-Section 6A-South tournament. The Jaguars are set to host No. 7-seeded St. John's Prep on Tuesday, May 28 for the opening round of the playoffs. The game will be played in Elrosa starting at 5 p.m.

Border West (16-2) is the No. 2 seed in the subsection. Behind the Jaguars at No. 3 is Upsala/Swanville Area (12-6).

2019 Sub-Section 6A-South baseball seedings:
1.) Border West (16-2, also Pheasant Conference champs)
2.) B-B-E (9-9)
3.) Upsala/Swanville Area (12-6)
4.) West Central Area (9-8)
5.) Hancock (10-8)
6.) Ortonville (3-12)
7.) St. John's Prep (1-13)

New York Mills (14-3) is the top seed in Sub-Section 6A-North.

*Don't the Elrosa Saints amateur baseball team hosts Lake Henry at 1:30 p.m. for a cross-divisional game.

Last night in St. Martin, the Saints suffered their first Stearns County League loss of the year by a 3-2 score to the Martins.

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Friday, May 24, 2019

Spring returns!

The sun came out this afternoon, and it felt like the gates of heaven opened up!

I hope you've been able to get outside and get some sun.

*Here's an iMovie production by the Bonanza Valley Voice from the senior scholarship banquet held this past Wednesday night.

Coverage from the banquet will be published in the June 6 issue of the Bonanza Valley Voice newspaper.

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Thursday, May 23, 2019

Playoff action heats up

Okay, from the top!

The B-B-E Jaguars fastpitch team lost 9-3 to CGB in an elimination game of the subsection playoffs tonight. They graduate five talented seniors off of this team who played in seven playoff games in the last two seasons. I will definitely miss their presence on the team, but the team returns some very talented underclassmen for next season. This year's final record was 4-18. Last year they finished 7-15 overall.

In the winner's bracket of tonight's sub-section fastpitch playoffs, West Central Area defeated No. 1-seeded Upsala by an 8-3 score. WCA takes on two-time defending Section 6A champion New York Mills next Tuesday night in the winner's bracket final.

*Added late Thursday night: below, video of action at the end of tonight's first playoff game:

The B-B-E Jaguars baseball team picked up two wins today to conclude the regular season. They beat Kimball 11-0 in five innings at home. Then at Upsala tonight, the Jaguars (9-9) beat Upsala/Swanville Area 13-0 in five innings. Gavin Kampsen and Thaniel Cebulla both had home runs on the day, and Will VanBeck and Jackson Peter both had great days pitching for the Jaguars.

The USA Patriots take a 12-6 record into the subsection playoffs. B-B-E's baseball team opens playoffs next Tuesday at home with a 5 p.m. game. Opponent TBD. Border West will be the No. 1 seed.

At Morris, at least seven members of the B-B-E Jaguars track and field teams earned tickets to the Section 6A meet. They competed in the Sub-Section 6A-21 meet tonight at the University of Minnesota-Morris campus facilities.

Heading to the state-qualifying meet in Fergus Falls next Thursday, May 30 are Blake Goodall, Kenzie Thieschafer, Matthew Kollman, Ryan Schwinghammer, Tiyana Schwinghammer, Allisa Knight and Tori Reed.

We are hopeful that Ryan Young also advanced in the pole vault, but that event was still going and results not published yet.

More to come. It wasn't easy, but I managed to get some really neat video from fastpitch and track tonight.  I always wish I could do more, but I have to be happy with what I get.

 Time to head home!!

  • Here's a short link to view the spring 2019 sports photos album at the Bonanza Valley Voice newspaper's online gallery:

*And thank you to Integrity Home Investments of Brooten for their loyal support of the Bonanza Valley Voice, and the newspaper's news and sports departments! They have a real estate open house this weekend on Sunday. You can see their advertisement on page 11 of this week's newspaper issue.

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(VIDEO) Senior scholarship banquet

Here's a video clip from last night's banquet showing Glenn Miller speaking about the late Gary Fauskee, who died in 2012. He was a four-sport athlete for the Brooten Buccaneers and a 1976 BHS graduate.

We definitely miss Gary here in Brooten!!

Time to gear up for a big day of sports action. Updates will be posted at this blog post throughout the evening.

**Fastpitch playoffs, round II, starts at 4 p.m....updates to follow.

*Update: the Jaguars lost 2-1 in the first game tonight. They play in an elimination game this evening against to-be-determined.

**Update: the Jaguars face Clinton-Graceville-Beardsley, the No. 3 seed.

**Update: after two innings, CGB has a 7-1 lead. This game is on Smooth Magic 107 FM.

Final score will be posted in a new blog post.**


Golf playoffs

Some very exciting playoff news! This adds to the excitement of the week in Jaguar Country that started with our varsity fastpitch team winning their playoff opener.

The Minnewaska/B-B-E Blue Jackets girls' golf team has a 12-stroke lead over second-place Marshall Area at the Section 3AA tournament. The first day of sections (May 22) is in the book, and as a team the Blue Jackets have a score of 347. The two-day tournament is hosted at Oakdale golf course of Buffalo Lake.

B-B-E's Jacqueline Gossen shot an 85 to pace the Blue Jackets, and following her on the leaderboard are Greta Reichmann (86), Madi McGinty (88) and Annika Stensrud (91) to round out the top four scorers for the team.

The Section 3AA finals will be held on Tuesday, May 28 back in rural Buffalo Lake.

Day one of the Section 5A boys' golf tournament was rained out in Willmar. The B-B-E Jaguars boys' golf team will now compete in day one of sections on Wednesday, May 29 back in Willmar (Oakdale Golf Course)...and the section finals will be on Thursday, May 29. The top four teams from day one, plus 25 percent of the remaining field's individuals, will advance to the Section 5A finals.


Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Game changes (baseball)

The B-B-E Jaguars baseball team will play at home in Elrosa tomorrow (Thursday) against Kimball Area to conclude the Central Minnesota Conference schedule. The game was supposed to be held today, but steady rain has nixed outdoor activities beyond practice.

First pitch for the B-B-E vs. Kimball game is at 1 p.m. tomorrow at Saints Field.

Shifting gears...
I will re-post this comment again in the coming days...but I have to laugh at some of the comments buzzing around the community to the idea that Bonanza Valley Days in Brooten will be either scaled back or not held at all in July. It is one thing to "miss" something or mistakenly be out of the loop. You're busy, you're not paying attention and you just flat out miss information that is freely flowing around. However, it takes extra effort to remain ignorant. You have to really work at it. To miss month after month of Bonanza Valley Days 2019 dates published in the Bonanza Valley Voice, and miss the feature front page article back in March (March 28) that highlighted fundraising and the miss all of that takes a tremendous effort on the part of the ignorant person.

It is probably a better idea to spend that energy becoming informed, rather than spending that energy remaining ignorant. You're a low-grade fool if you choose the latter route.

For the record, this week's (May 23) issue of the Bonanza Valley Voice has some really cool updates and information on Bonanza Valley Days 2019! You should get a copy of the paper if you haven't already.

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Tuesday, May 21, 2019


So immensely proud of the B-B-E Jaguars fastpitch team!

Their backs were to the wall. They could have folded. As a team, they could have fallen apart. But like all good teams, they stuck with it!

Trailing 7-4 going into their final at bat, the Jaguars rallied with four runs scored to earn a walk-off 8-7 playoff win in the opening round of the Sub-Section 6A-South tournament. On one out with the score tied 7-7 in the bottom of the seventh, Ally Gruber hit an RBI-single for the game's eighth run to end the action and advance her team. Dacia Herickhoff, also the winning pitcher, scored the game-winning run.

The Jaguars take a 4-16 record into the semifinal round, which is also the first portion of the double-elimination format of subsections. They play top-seeded Upsala on Thursday this week at 4 p.m. at Minnewaska Area high school.

The Upsala Cardinals won their playoff opener tonight against No. 8-seeded Wheaton/Herman-Norcross by a 12-2 score in six innings. Other sub-section quarterfinal results: No. 2 West Central Area won 13-3 in five innings over No. 7-seeded Ortonville; and No. 3-seeded Clinton-Graceville-Beardsley beat No. 6-seeded Swanville 8-7 to advance.

More to come. Video to come as well! Stay tuned.

**Update: here's the video! Shown is almost the entire bottom of the seventh inning tonight:

And THANK YOU to the Belgrade Hardware store for sponsoring tonight's playoff coverage by the Bonanza Valley Voice newspaper's sports department. We hope that Jaguar fans make sure to keep Belgrade Hardware in mind for all their household, business and recreational needs.


Playoffs begin

The postseason begins today for B-B-E varsity-level spring sports! The B-B-E Jaguars fastpitch team hosts Hancock in the Sub-Section 6A-South quarterfinals. Action begins at 5 p.m. on the home diamond, with the Jaguars earning the No. 4 seed in the eight-team subsection.

In other news...
a real estate open house has been scheduled in Brooten for this coming Sunday. Read more details at the Bonanza Valley Voice website: The advertisement for this open house will appear (probably) on page 13 this week.

*Update: after one inning in the playoff opener, the B-B-E Jaguars fastpitch team and the Hancock Owls are tied 0-0.

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Monday, May 20, 2019

Sub-Section Track and Field

The B-B-E Jaguars track and field teams will compete on Thursday this week in the Sub-Section 6A-21 meet. The field events begin at 3:30 p.m. at the University of Minnesota-Morris track and field athletic complex. Running events begin at 4:30 p.m.

Also, the B-B-E Jaguars baseball team will compete in a CMC double-header starting at 3 p.m. at Pierz on Tuesday (tomorrow).

Time for a quick trip to Sunburg for a community meeting and then the B-B-E school board meeting!

  • In baseball news, Upsala/Swanville Area defeated Browerville's baseball team in eight innings by a 4-3 score tonight. The Patriots improve to 11-5 overall. In Central Minnesota Conference action, Howard Lake-Waverly-Winsted's baseball team defeated Kimball Area by a 12-7 score tonight. Also...Paynesville's baseball team defeated Holdingford 4-0 tonight.

Paynesville Area finishes the CMC schedule with a 12-2 record. They sit in second place right now behind conference-leading Pierz.

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Sunday, May 19, 2019

Wet, rainy day

The weather for our Sunday isn't instilling confidence for outdoor activities...a high of 43 degrees, 100 percent chance of rain and 20 mile an hour winds.

The Elrosa Saints amateur baseball team host postponed a home game set for today with Richmond has been postponed to July 21. It will now be played in Richmond at 1:30 p.m. that day.

Other events today:
In Sunburg, a full day of activities has been curtailed to some extent due to the rain. I will post more after church.

From 1 to 4 p.m., Integrity Home Investments of Brooten is a real estate open house is in rural Brooten...details on page 10 of this week's Voice. You can also check out additional photos and information at the Voice website (short link):

What else? Oh, there's more!
The B-B-E Just For Kix chapter is hosting their spring dance show at 4 p.m. today at the elementary school. They have 106 student dancers in their program this season!

Remember to visit the Bonanza Valley Voice newspaper website every day at this community calendar page...even visiting a couple times a week will help you stay up-to-date on local events!  (Short link)

*Update: the Syttende Mai parade in Sunburg was canceled due to the cold wind and rain. However, the Sunburg fire department hamburger feed is still on. They are serving until 7 p.m.

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Saturday, May 18, 2019

Fastpitch playoffs seeding

The B-B-E Jaguars fastpitch team earned the No. 4 seed in Sub-Section 6A-South. They will host a quarterfinal-round game on Tuesday, May 21 at 5 p.m. against Hancock.

If the Jaguars win, they would likely play top-seeded Upsala in the semifinals on Thursday, May 23 at Minnewaska Area high school at 4 p.m. Win or lose in that semifinal game, the Jaguars would play a second game that night at 5:30 p.m. at Minnewaska. Once a team wins in the quarterfinals, a double-elimination format goes into effect.

2019 Sub-Section 6A-South fastpitch seedings: 1st Upsala (11-8)
2nd West Central Area (15-3)
3rd Clinton-Graceville-Beardsley (10-7)
4th B-B-E (3-16)
5th Hancock (7-9)
6th Swanville (3-13)
7th Ortonville (4-10)
8th Wheaton/Herman-Norcross (2-16)

New York Mills (18-2) is the defending section champion and also the top seed in Sub-Section 6A-North.


Tournament's day two cancelled

Due to a fair amount of rain in the area received last night plus an unfavorable forecast, day two of the Max Bats Classic baseball Invitational has been cancelled.

Friday, May 17, 2019

Max Bats tournament

The B-B-E Jaguars baseball team lost 12-8 to Willmar tonight in the Max Bats tournament in Elrosa. Earlier in the evening, Kerkhoven-Murdock-Sunburg defeated Browerville by a 6-2 score.

Saturday's games in Elrosa are in doubt, with the forecast calling for thunderstorms and rain all weekend.

The Elrosa Saints amateur baseball team is supposed to host Richmond on Sunday for their home opener, but that's definitely in doubt right now too.

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Syttende Mai weekend

Three Syttende Mai events happening this weekend in the Bonanza Valley! Today is the official Norwegian Independence Day anniversary.

Tonight is the night to swing by the Padua Pub! from 4 to 8 p.m...more information on page 3 this week.

On Sunday, May 19, both Sunburg and Terrace have Syttende Mai events taking place.

At Chippewa Falls Lutheran church in Terrace, they are serving a hearty Norwegian Smorgasbord from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in their church basement.

And Sunburg has a full day of activities going on lasting over 12 hours! You can find that on the Bonanza Valley Voice website:

*In other news...
The Brooten Commercial Club is meeting with the Minnesota Gambling and Control Board on Monday, May 20. There are a number of issues that need to be hashed out as the Commercial Club goes through the process of dissolving their state charitable gambling license. It's a meeting that they have been waiting for months to take place.

Hopefully you will be able to read more news on this in next week's Bonanza Valley Voice newspaper. Stay tuned!

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Thursday, May 16, 2019

A close loss

The B-B-E Jaguars fastpitch team lost 8-6 to the top-ranked team in Sub-Section 6A-South...the Upsala Cardinals. The Jaguars led 6-4 after six innings, but the Cardinals (11-8) plated four runs to take the lead in the top of the seventh.

At Kimball tonight, the B-B-E Jaguars baseball team picked up a huge 16-3 conference win over the Cubs. The Jaguars (7-6) led 9-3 after six innings.

More to come later. I have to find the schedule for this weekend's Max Bats Classic baseball tournament in Elrosa. B-B-E hosts Willmar, Kerkhoven-Murdock-Sunburg and Browerville on Friday and Saturday.

**Update: the Jaguars play at 7 p.m. on Friday night in their first game of the baseball tournament in Elrosa.

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Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Hectic day

It was a hectic Wednesday.

Just as I was looking forward to taking a small break from work this afternoon, I got a reminder that the elementary band and choir spring concert was coming at 2:30 p.m.

I made it and it was all good...but of course, the break from work never happened until well after the sun went down.

And tonight it was very exciting to look at preliminary floor plan ideas for school building improvements. I have more to write about that tomorrow.

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

CMC championships

The Bonanza Valley Voice is taking in the Central Minnesota Conference track and field championships in Kimball tonight. The B-B-E Jaguars are turning in an excellent showing.

We'll finally get track and field photos in the newspaper again! The last meet the Voice covered was way back on April 5.

It's been a challenging spring to keep a sports section going.

*Update: senior Blake Goodall earned the CMC high jump title! His best jump was good for 5'10", which is two inches better than his seed coming into the meet.

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Plenty of activities and a full plate

No end in sight to what the Bonanza Valley Voice has to promote! I'll update this blog post today at random times. Later today we have a full agenda with the Central Minnesota Conference track and field championships in Kimball.

Silent Auction and more with Big Grove Lutheran Memorial Day dinner and cash raffle! 
The Big Grove Lutheran church WELCA group will serve a Memorial Day dinner with Silent Auction from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Monday, May 27 in the church basement. A silent auction will take place during that same time that includes over 300 donated items from very generous families and our awesome business community.

 We will serve BBQs, salad, chips, pickles and bars with lemonade and coffee provided. Free will offering, and cash raffle to follow at 1 o’clock.

We have a tremendous local business community who has stepped up in many ways to help shepherd the Bonanza Valley Voice through his past winter and spring. It's been hectic on the slowest of's a shout out to our Belgrade Hardware Store! They have such great people there and do a fine job keeping our family and business supplied with what we need for our daily operations.

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Monday, May 13, 2019

Extra-inning win

The B-B-E Jaguars baseball team plated three runs in the top of the eighth inning to bust up a scoreless tie in regulation innings at Holdingford tonight.

Final: B-B-E 3, Holdingford 0. The Jaguars even their overall record at 6-6 heading into Thursday's game at Kimball Area.

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Take in that sunshine

I hope you can take in some sunshine today!

I played hooky from work this morning and spent a couple hours in the garden. I don't think it's possible to leave a garden after working the soil and be in a bad mood.

Some community-related events!
This weekend there are at least three Syttende Mai-related celebrations taking place. First is what the Padua Pub is holding on Friday, May 17. (Advertised on page 3 of last week's Bonanza Valley Voice.)

Also, on Sunday, May 19 you can take in Syttende Mai celebrations in Sunburg and also in Terrace. You can read about what's happening in Sunburg in this week's Voice and also on our website (short link):

In Terrace, Chippewa Falls Lutheran church holds a Norwegian Smorgasbord dinner from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

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Sunday, May 12, 2019

Town team

The Elrosa Saints are in New Munich this afternoon for a division game with the Silverstreaks.

*Update: the Saints won by a score of 5 to 1. Kevin Kuefler batted a thousand on four at bats. Elrosa tallied 14 hits overall.

Next: the Saints (3-0 Stearns County League North) host Richmond on Sunday, May 19 for the home opener. First pitch is at 1:30 p.m.

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Friday, May 10, 2019

A day for golf

Today is a truly magnificent day for a boys' golf meet!

The B-B-E Jaguars boys' golf team is competing at Little Crow golf course of New London. They have six golfers out here, all sophomores or younger.

*Update: the Jaguars shot a 423 as a team; they were led by Spencer Lundberg's score of 100.

In a home doubleheader tonight, the B-B-E Jaguars baseball team lost 7-1 and then 5-4 to Maple Lake. They are 5-6 overall now.

The B-B-E Jaguars fastpitch team lost two games in a doubleheader at Pierz by scores of 15-0 and 19-2. They are 3-11 overall now.

The Minnewaska/B-B-E Blue Jackets girls' golf team is competing in a two-day invitational at Dacotah Ridge in Marshall. They resume action tomorrow morning.

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Thursday, May 09, 2019

Track update..and more!

The track and field meet in Melrose today has been cancelled. I learned that Melrose received more snow than we did last night.


And also learned that the varsity-level baseball and fastpitch Central Minnesota Conference action for today has been postponed.

The B-B-E Jaguars baseball team will host Maple Lake tomorrow (Friday) at 4 p.m. in Elrosa for a doubleheader. The B-B-E Jaguars fastpitch team travels to Maple Lake tomorrow for a CMC doubleheader.

On Easter Sunday at two church services, I got a fair amount of video content to work a front-page, feature photo of the Norway Lake Lutheran parish joint choir singing Handel's "Hallelujah Chorus" that morning. Here's a couple songs by the East Norway Lake mixed choir from Easter sunrise service. They sound amazing!!!


Thursday night updates:
In CMC fastpitch action today, Eden Valley-Watkins and Paynesville Area split a doubleheader. In game one, the Bulldogs defeated EV-W 18-2. In game two, the Eagles defeated Paynesville 17-10.

Also in fastpitch action today, Kimball Area and Pierz split a doubleheader. In game one, the Pioneers beat Kimball 9-6. In game two, the Cubs beat Pierz 11-4.

In CMC baseball action today, Paynesville Area defeated EV-W by an 8-2 score.

Wednesday, May 08, 2019

More changes in the CMC

Today the Wright County Conference voted to accept Howard Lake-Waverly-Winsted into their western division starting in the fall of 2020. Their school enrollment has been growing considerably in the last five to six years. Their new senior high school, which opened about 10 years ago, has already had one addition built on that campus in that period of time. With Pierz exiting the CMC after this spring, HL-W-W will be the second-biggest school (grades 9-12 enrollment) in the CMC for 2019-2020. Holdingford sits at the top of the list as of the latest figures.

Two schools have been invited to join the Central Minnesota Conference. Once I hear more on what those schools decide to do, I'll report on what I find out.

Added on Thursday...
below is some video from Tuesday's varsity fastpitch softball loss to Paynesville Area. After a two-inch snowfall (wet, heavy snow) last night across the Bonanza Valley area, it appears that winter has subsided and outdoor activities can get underway. The sun is shining strong here at mid-morning in Brooten. The current forecast for Thursday, May 9 says "high of 52 degrees and cloudy" which makes me think that they have no idea what they're talking about. There is literally blue sky all over when you look up! Good gravy! "Current weather" right now says 43 degrees and cloudy. No! It is not cloudy outside!

*Here's the video clip, featuring Emily Kern pitching...she recorded a strikeout to end the top of the third inning:

Get out and enjoy some sunshine today!


(VIDEO) Pink at the FargoDome

I was fortunate enough to spend the weekend in Fargo and also take in the Pink concert at the FargoDome on Saturday night.

In my newspaper column this week, I made a glaring error while describing the weekend. I mentioned "having breakfast at the hotel on Friday" when I certainly meant to say Saturday. It was a very weird mistake. Earlier in the column, I spoke about getting pictures at the Let's Go Fishing fish fry on Friday night and then driving to Fargo afterwards. I certainly did not have breakfast in Fargo on Friday! Sheesh!!!!

Check out this video clip from the concert:

Pink recorded "Just Like a Pill" in 2001. The song's music video was shot in December 2001. You can read more about this song at And be sure to take in my newspaper's column that gives a few highlights of the weekend that we just had.

I ran out of space to give proper coverage to the Smooth Magic 107 FM Sports Banquet that was held one week ago in Glenwood. Below is video (~10 minutes long) featuring the awards given to six student-athletes in the B-B-E Jaguars athletic program.

More updates to come later tonight.

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Tuesday, May 07, 2019

Three losses

Three losses were the result of a road doubleheader and a home conference game tonight.

The B-B-E Jaguars baseball team lost 11-0 in five innings and 4-1 in a doubleheader at Paynesville. Now 5-4 overall, they are set to host Maple Lake in Elrosa on Thursday (4 p.m. first game) in a Central Minnesota Conference doubleheader.

The B-B-E Jaguars fastpitch team had an early 2-0 lead, but that could not hold up in a 10-2 loss to visiting Paynesville. Now 3-9 overall, the Jaguars travel to No. 1-ranked (Class 2A) Maple Lake (10-1) on Thursday for a CMC doubleheader.

More to come on Wednesday.

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(VIDEO) ...Syttende Mai in Sunburg

Here's a web article at the Bonanza Valley Voice website that highlights the upcoming Syttende Mai celebration in Sunburg on May 19. It was published last week on page 2 of the May 2 issue of the Bonanza Valley Voice. We'll have more coverage on this full day of events in the May 9 and May 16 issues of the Bonanza Valley Voice.

(short link)

The web article includes a 23-minute video clip from the grand parade on May 20, 2018 plus a link to the newspaper's SmugMug photo gallery from that day.

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Monday, May 06, 2019

Spring concert

The B-B-E spring band and choir concert will be tonight at 7 p.m. at the high school.

I can't promise how many, but you can look for a big spread of concert photos in the upcoming issue of the Bonanza Valley Voice newspaper.

Also, I finally have prom grand march video uploaded, and in the next day I hope to get that posted.

**Update late Monday night: finally, I managed to get this up after the concert. Click here to watch part of grand march at B-B-E's 30th annual prom on April 27 (short link):

By the way, the high school's spring concert was terrific!!!! Look for coverage in this week's Bonanza Valley Voice. HATS OFF to all the student musicians as well as the directors, Mrs. Tessier and Mrs. Gertken. You are all rock stars!!!!!!!

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Sunday, May 05, 2019

(VIDEO) Fastpitch softball action

Slowly, oh so slowly! Slowly but surely we are getting this ship back on track.

Below is video from the home doubleheader against Kimball Area last Thursday.

The B-B-E Jaguars fastpitch team lost 11-0 and 5-2 that night. They host Paynesville Area on Tuesday this coming week for a Central Minnesota Conference doubleheader (4 p.m.).

In amateur baseball action today, the Elrosa Saints defeated Spring Hill at Chargers Field by a 3-1 score. Both teams had six hits each, and on the bases, Elrosa left 12 runners stranded with Spring Hill leaving 11 runners on. The Saints pushed the game-winning run plus an insurance run across in the top of the eighth inning.

Next for Elrosa (2-0 Stearns County League-North) is a road game at New Munich on Sunday for a Mother's Day contest. First pitch is at 1:30 p.m.


Saturday, May 04, 2019

Theft case in Willmar

This caught my eye earlier today at the West Central Tribune website.

I bought a cell phone battery at this location a little over a year ago. I didn't pay with cash.

Spring concert

The B-B-E high school spring concert is at 7 p.m. on Monday, May 6.

Also, Monday is a school day at B-B-E! This is the final make up day for lost school days due to winter weather.

Pastor John recently asked me to promote the upcoming Baccalaureate church service for the B-B-E Class of 2019. You can read those details here at the Bonanza Valley Voice website (short link): At the web article, you can see a video clip from the 2016 Baccalaureate service.

**Also, B-B-E prom grand march photos will not be uploaded until Sunday night. I was hoping to get them up along with video by now, but instead I am taking a break from work!!

I hope you can get outside and enjoy the outdoors and sunshine today!!

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Friday, May 03, 2019

Track meet

The home track and field meet was canceled today. A hard shot of rain passed over Jaguar Country and made conditions too wet for field events to take place.

On the other hand, the Let's Go Fishing fish fry event was very well-attended tonight at the Brothers Bar in Belgrade. I won a nice slab of sirloin steak at the meat raffle! Cool!

Signing off for the night.

Thursday, May 02, 2019

Baseball action

The B-B-E Jaguars baseball team swept Eden Valley-Watkins 6-2 and 13-3 today in a doubleheader. The Central Minnesota Conference games were played at Joe Faber Field in St. Cloud.

The Jaguars now have a 5-2 overall record going into next Tuesday's (May 7) crucial conference doubleheader in Paynesville.

I'll post more on Friday. Busy times!!

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Wednesday, May 01, 2019

Home fastpitch, Elrosa Saints update

It looks like we'll get back into action sports-wise on Thursday in Jaguar Country!

The B-B-E Jaguars fastpitch team hosts Kimball Area at 4 p.m. for a Central Minnesota Conference doubleheader tomorrow (May 2). The forecast suggests these games will be played!

The Bonanza Valley Voice is currently working with three realtors on marketing local properties and business ventures. One is Integrity Home Investments of Brooten, whose properties have been a fixture on our legal/business page each week for the past four years. We have also had the pleasure of working with Morgan Schmitt of Central Minnesota Realty; she is based out of Melrose. Currently Morgan is marketing the Chuckwagon drive-in restaurant in Brooten. You can see that listing and a few Integrity listings at the Bonanza Valley Voice website (short link): A third realtor, who has been a long-time advertiser in the newspaper (going back decades!) is Dave Weller with Hughes  Real Estate and Auction Service. (Business link: You can see Dave's bio here (short link):

We would greatly appreciate if you can help spread the word on these real estate listings! It is crucial to our newspaper's news and sports departments that we have the resources to cover the events of our local Bonanza Valley area. Partnering with the above-mentioned real estate companies is a huge benefit to the Voice!

  • Here's a web article with a game recap of the Elrosa Saints baseball team's season-opening win on Sunday at Greenwald. This week's issue of the Bonanza Valley Voice did not have room to include this, which we apologize for. (Prom packed it in this week!)...short link:

  • Here's a short link to the Bonanza Valley Voice newspaper's employment page on the website...these ads are also listed in the weekly print edition. Check them out and pass the word on what is available for local job openings!

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Street improvements

With prom overwhelming this week's Bonanza Valley Voice, I totally spaced on adding information / photos on the street improvements that are underway in Brooten. Things heated up on Tuesday with many streets getting ground up and ready for a new overlay.

I'll post more later. Time to head to the printing press! ##WheelsUp

  • Here's a short web article at the Bonanza Valley Voice website (short link): This will be updated later in the day.

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