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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: 2017-04-19 02:15 PM CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. - It was a challenging and rewarding two weeks for members attending the Army National Guard Funeral Honors Instructor Course, April 1-14, at Camp Ripley.
Soldiers of National Guard units from all over the United States took part in the course designed to educate team leaders in a variety of funeral honor detail tasks, traditions and responsibilities.
"It's a stressful course, but for our job, we have to be prepared to do our job under stress; and we all really benefitted from that," said Class Honor Grad, Sgt. Ryan Valline of the 2nd Combined Arms Battalion, 136th Infantry.
Posted: 2017-04-18 01:42 PM ROSEMOUNT, Minn. - The Soldiers of the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division had a unique opportunity to speak with one of the U.S. Army's five Muslim chaplains April 7-10, 2017. U.S. Army Chaplain (Lt. Col.) Khallid Shabazz, I Corps deputy command chaplain, travelled from Fort Lewis, Washington, to Minnesota to provide professional development for the division chaplain section.
"Soldiers perform at a higher level when they are spiritually fit," said Minnesota National Guard Chaplain (Lt. Col.) Buddy Winn, the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division command chaplain. "And, it's our job as chaplains to make sure Soldiers have their spiritual needs met, regardless of faith. Having Chaplain Shabazz here as a Muslim Chaplain provides the diversity in religious background that we can't provide internally."
There are five major religions supported by the chaplaincy: Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Hindu and Buddhist, but over 200 religions are recognized. Chaplains can only perform services for their particular religion, but they can provide support for all Soldiers, regardless of their faith.
Posted: 2017-04-14 04:25 PM ST. PAUL, Minn. - For the third consecutive year, Minnesota service members were honored with on-court recognition and other VIP treatments as part of the Minnesota Timberwolves Heroes of the Pack Program.
"We are very appreciative for what the military does for us, and we wanted to give something back to honor the military," said Roger McCabe, who along with wife, Nancy, is a driving force behind the recognitions through the FastBreak Foundation and Roger & Nancy McCabe Foundation. "This is our way of doing it."
Having lived through the Vietnam War - and with Roger and Nancy both having parents who served - the two philanthropists decided a few years back to build upon existing recognition efforts already underway by the Timberwolves. And with that, recognitions that were typically happening at Target Center in November expanded to include Minnesota Service members from all branches at every home game - a total of 41 honorees per season.
"It was a lot of work and lessons learned, but it was awesome seeing the completed product," said Sgt. 1st Class Brian Reiten, readiness non-commissioned officer for C Co., 2nd Combined Arms Battalion, 136th Infantry.