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CAMP RIPLEY, Minn - The North Star Sled Dog Club hosted multiple sled-dog races in the first ever 'Spirit of the North' Winter Warrior sled dog race held Feb16 - 17 at Camp Ripley
"Mushers and teams came from all over the state to take part in 10, 25 and 40-mile races around the Camp Ripley Training Center," said Camp Ripley spokesperson Maj John Donovan
"This two day event is new to the variety of activities conducted on Camp Ripley," said Col Scott St Sauver, post commander for Camp Ripley "It's exciting to watch the racers and teams test their skills in this challenging sport," added St Sauver
Early risers were able to enjoy the view from the grand stand while they sipped hot chocolate The races started at 9 am on both days and lasted through the early afternoon
"It's great having so many people out here to see what we do and learn about sled dogs," said Bob Bzdok, event co-organizer "We are so pleased to be out here on Camp Ripley It was great not having to worry about running into hazards on the trail"
Most sled-dog races are held in state parks or along connecting trails accessible to snowmobilers and skiers Occasionally, the sled-dog trails will cross roads which cause a safety hazard for the racers and their teams according to Bzdok Although Camp Ripley is open to the public, the trails utilized by the racers were closed to foot and vehicle traffic
Of course, the dogs are the most popular aspect of the sport
"Most folks have never seen this kind of thing before; we get a lot of questions asking about how friendly the dogs are," said Club Veterinarian Jerry Vanek "They are excited athletes, but they'll be just as happy to lick your face as anything else," he added
The event put on by the North Star Sled Dog Club was the first of its kind in Morrison County and drew an estimated crowd of 500 people According to Bzdok, everyone involved stressed how impressed they were with the support from Camp Ripley and the racers are looking forward to coming back next year
Feb 17, 2012
Photos and story by Sgt Anthony Housey
Camp Ripley Public Affairs Office
Posted: 2017-01-15 04:44 PM CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. - Four Soldiers from the Minnesota Army National Guard's Little Falls-based 1903rd Support Detachment, 347th Regional Support Group will deploy for a nine-month contracting mission at Camp Arifjan, Kuwait, in support of Operation Freedom Sentinel.
"The Soldiers are motivated, trained and ready for their upcoming mission. We will contract for the necessary services and supplies to support the warfighter," said to Lt. Col. Michael Lange, the team commander.
Posted: 2017-01-13 01:54 PM
Brig. Gen. Jon Jensen, Minnesota National Guard Director of the Joint Staff, took command of the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division, Jan. 8, 2017, as the Division marks its centennial anniversary.
"2017 marks a historic year for the Red Bulls as we begin celebrating the 100th anniversary of the 34th Infantry Division," said Maj. Gen. Richard C. Nash, Adjutant General of the Minnesota National Guard. The Division, then known as the "Sandstorm Division," was created in 1917 from National Guard troops of Minnesota, Iowa, the Dakotas and Nebraska.
Jensen is the second native of Council Bluffs, Iowa, to hold the position and joins a long line of commanders who have led the Division through both of the World Wars up to the current Global War on Terrorism.
Posted: 2017-01-12 09:34 AM ST. PAUL, Minn. - Soldiers and Airmen with the Minnesota National Guard's CBRN Enhanced Response Force Package (CERFP) and Twin Cities emergency service personnel with MN Task Force One endured single-digit temperatures at the WestRock paper mill in St. Paul, Minn., Jan. 7, 2017, for a joint training exercise.
Posted: 2017-01-11 01:21 PM CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. - The contingent of soldiers and airmen from the Minnesota National Guard preparing for the annual U.S.-Norwegian Reciprocal Troop Exchange assembled for their first formal training event Saturday and Sunday at Camp Ripley Training Center.
The preparatory drill weekend, which took place one month before 103 members of the Minnesota National Guard embark to Norway as part of the "away team" for the two-week military and cultural exchange event, was held to provide information on the exchange and, more importantly, allow an opportunity for these service members from units across the state to come together as one team.
"It's a good opportunity to meet people from diverse backgrounds in an accelerated environment," said Army Sgt. 1st Class David Wentzel, with the 1st Battalion, 125th Field Artillery. "This experience is what they're going to make of it, and they're making the most of it."