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31st Emergency Services Conference to be Held in Grand Marais April 28 and 29 –

Cook County Emergency Services holds its 31st Emergency Services Conference in Grand Marais on April 28th and 29th. Dubbed “this great Cook County ‘get together’” the conference attracts local firefighters, emergency medical response personnel, law enforcement, and Emergen­cy Management leadership.

The event is open to the general public and presents the various emergency man­agement services available to residents and visitors and provides training opportunities for local firefighters and other emergency responders

Programs throughout the weekend include:

  • Refresher training for emergency re­sponders on the ARMER radio system and a presentation about possible radio replacement options.
  • The State Fire Marshal’s office will have Robert Reif on hand to present the resources its office has on offer.
  • North Shore Health Ambulance offers an open house displaying the ambulanc­es and equipment it uses. A Lifelink III helicopter will be onsite.
  • Personnel from the National Weather Service’s Duluth office will conduct SKYWARN Storm Spotter training.
  • Andrea Tofte, Cook County Public Health, will give an After Action Re­port and Lessons Learned following the extended COVID pandemic.
  • Kevynn Schumacher from the Minne­sota Department of Health will conduct Psychological First Aid Training.
  • Naloxone (Narcan) training to educate on how and when to use these products properly.
  • Luke Campbell of the Minnesota Depart­ment of Health will speak to the effects on mental health during and following a prolonged pandemic.
  • The National Guard 148th Fighter Wing will be on site with their portable com­munications tower, and First Net will have a Cellular portable communications tower to test interoperability among local, regional, and state communication resources.
  • Arrowhead Electric will discuss where its power comes from, what its prior­ities are during a power outage, what residents/visitors should do during an outage, and it will recap the December blizzard power outage and present the lessons learned.
  • For first responders, North Shore Health staff will conduct “Stop the Bleed” train­ing focused on the ability to recognize life-threatening bleeding and intervene effectively.
  • Updates from Minnesota Homeland Security and Emergency Management, Cook County Emergency Management, and US Forest Service about spring wildfire outlook.
  • The keynote speaker is Chris Heeter from The Wild Institute. Heeter is a motivational speaker using sled dogs and whitewater analogies to breathe life and fresh air into topics such as Cook County’s emergency personnel and first responders. 

Admission to most of these events is free and open to the public. A definite schedule of events and their venues will be available in the near future. Registration for the event can be found at https://www.eventbrite.com.

Steve Fernlund
Steve Fernlund
Typically these “about me” pages include a list of academic achievements (I have none) and positions held (I have had many, but who really cares about those?) So, in the words of the late Admiral James Stockwell, “Who am I? Why am I here?” I’m well into my seventh decade on this blue planet we call home. I’m a pretty successful husband, father, and grandfather, at least in my humble opinion. My progeny may disagree. We have four children and five grandchildren. I spent most of my professional life in the freight business. At the tender age of 40, early retirement beckoned and we moved to Grand Marais. A year after we got here, we bought and operated the Cook County News Herald, a weekly newspaper in Grand Marais. A sharp learning curve for a dumb freight broker to become a newspaper editor and publisher. By 1999 the News Herald was an acquisition target for a rapidly consolidating media market. We sold our businesses and “retired” again, buying a winter retreat in Nevada. In the fall of 2016, we returned to Grand Marais and bought a house from old friends of ours on the ridge overlooking Lake Superior. They were able to move closer to family and their Mexico winter home. And we came home to what we say is our last house. I’m a strong believer in the value of local newspapers--both online and those you can wrap a fish in. I write a weekly column and a couple of feature stories for the Northshore Journal. I’m most interested in writing about the everyday lives of local people and reporting on issues of importance to them.
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