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Local Columns

Are men dumb or just confused?

Several years ago a list of jokes about “dumb men” made the rounds via e-mail. This was before Facebook became a joke-sharing medium. As I recall, most men laughed at the “dumb men” jokes, just as many blondes did when the “dumb blond” jokes made the rounds. Having worked with ...

Dealing with tightwads

You may call me frugal, if you wish. You may even call me thrifty. Just don’t call me a cheapskate. Growing up in a large low-income can teach money management skills difficult to learn under other circumstances. My childhood circumstances led me to a life of frugality. My mother could ...

Building resiliency to bounce back from anything

Resiliency has been a buzz word over the last few years in relation to trauma. How to build resiliency in ourselves and in our children, however, is not discussed as much as the effects of what happens to people who are not as resilient as others. It is inevitable that a person will have to ...

Adjust for early season fishing success

The early part of the fishing season is a great time to be on the water: It just feels good, and the fishing can be good also. Knowing a little bit about how fish go about their reproductive ritual can help us catch even more fish. Most of the fish that live in Midwest waters spawn in the ...

Confessions of a WAHM

Editor’s Note: Carrie Olson Tagg is a graduate of Webster City High School and a former Daily Freeman-Journal reporter. Today, she lives with her husband and daughter in Pennsylvania. When the quarantine started, it was recommended by a couple people that I write a blog post on my ...

Practicing self care in times of uncertainty

During these uncertain times, many people are experiencing higher levels of mental health challenges. It is important to do what we can to help not only ourselves, but also others around us. One of the most important things one can do at this time is to take care of ourselves and encourage ...

Looking forward to another time

Several weeks into the Great Quarantine of 2020 one of the topics I am seeing discussed on Facebook is hugs and how much people miss them. People are missing the physical contact denied by social distancing. For the most part, I grew up in a non-hugging family. We are of northern European ...

Getting ready for open water

I think my ice-fishing season is over for now. I didn’t get to go ice-fishing as much as I would have liked, but that’s the way it is most years. Today I started sorting through my open water fishing tackle boxes to see what I needed to start the open water season. One thought kept going ...

Spring river walleyes

I took a drive the other day and happened to travel over the bridge that spanned one of my favorite spring walleye rivers. There were several anglers within eyeshot of the bridge. It’s a small river, very similar to many of the small rivers that are found across the Midwest. It’s maybe a ...

Getting ready for open water fishing

I think my ice-fishing season is over for now. I didn’t get to go ice-fishing as much as I would have liked, but that’s the way it is most years. Today I started sorting through my open water fishing tackle boxes to see what I needed to start the open water season. One thought kept going ...

Catching bigger fish

A friend recently showed me a photo of a smallmouth bass that his son caught through the ice in mid-February 2020. It went almost 22 inches on the measuring board, was shaped like an over-inflated football, and was well in excess of 6 pounds. A real beauty. And you know what? Fish like ...

What does it mean to be idea friendly?

Can you make a small town more open to new ideas? Yes, and it may be the most important thing you can do. In a world driven by frenetic change, which small towns are going to thrive? We know rural people play a key role in our society, so some small towns will have a future. Some small towns ...

Ten town hall rules: Overcoming internal conflicts

Mila Besich, the mayor of Superior, Arizona, population 3,068, wrote us at SaveYour.Town to share the changes they've made around internal conflicts within their city, chamber, school board and new nonprofit. It's relevant to any small town and it's my pleasure to share her advice! "Our ...

Ideas for a fishing rod

The open water fishing season is quickly approaching. It’s at this time of year that many anglers start thinking about new equipment that they need or would like for open water fishing. Those thoughts might remind them that they need or want a new rod for their open water fishing. Some ...

Thinking of open water fishing

Although there’s still a lot of ice-fishing to do in the next several weeks, and some of the best ice-fishing action of the year will occur during those several weeks, March is when many of us start thinking about open water fishing. There are several reasons why that is. One of the reasons ...

Get more bites

It’s that time of year when ice-fishing is still good, and some outstanding fishing at the end of the ice-season is still going to happen. But it’s also the time of year when Boat Shows and Sportshows start popping up, and that gets anglers excited about the open water season. Following ...

Spoons through the ice

When we go out on the ice in search of fish to catch through the ice, much of the time, we just want to get bit. If the perch want to eat our bait that’s good: If a walleye or crappie is in the mood, that’s a good thing too. Walleyes and crappies and perch are certainly different fish, ...

Presentations for perch

I like to go ice-fishing, and I like to catch whatever I can catch through the ice. Walleyes, bluegills, crappies, bass, they’re all fun. But I also really like to catch perch, and so do a whole lot of other ice-anglers. Fortunately there are lots of outstanding places to catch perch ...

Just talk to each other

My community came out in droves to support keeping East Twin Park a park. There was a request from a developer that wanted to buy it to move and build a new store for a national discount retailer. The council voted no to selling. And people gave money, offered to volunteer and help in the ...

Factors in fishing success

Across much of the Midwest, it’s ice-fishing season. However, across much of the Midwest, we’ve experienced inconsistent weather in the past few weeks, which has led to inconsistent success on the ice. When it comes to ice-fishing or open water fishing, as different as they may seem, ...