Archive for Ivan Raconteur

Cokato to conduct emergency city council meeting

COKATO, MN – Mayor Gordy Erickson has called an emergency of the Cokato City Council in the community room (upstairs) at Cokato City Hall, Thursday March 19 at 6:30 p.m.
The purpose of the meeting is to discuss issues concerning the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Hutchinson Health and HealthPartners announces changes to help reduce COVID-19 transmission

Hutchinson, MN — Hutchinson Health and HealthPartners today announced that it is taking additional steps related to identification, treatment and safety of patients, care teams and the community that will help prevent and slow the spread of COVID-19.

Elective surgeries. Postponing all elective surgeries, procedures and non-essential radiology services through April 3, with no surgeries being scheduled until after April 27.
Dental appointments. Suspending non-emergent dental appointments that were scheduled between March 17 and March 29. For emergency procedures, dentists will evaluate a patient’s needs by phone and determine if the patient should be referred to a clinic for emergency care.
Office visits. Changing some routine office visits to phone calls or rescheduling.
In addition, based on recommendations from the Minnesota Department of Health in response to a national shortage of COVID-19 testing materials, HealthPartners and Hutchinson Health is suspending testing in the ambulatory clinics,

urgent cares and emergency centers for patients not requiring hospitalization. Our emergency rooms don’t have the ability to do COVID-19 testing unless patients require hospitalization.

We are closely monitoring state and federal guidelines and will continue to provide regular updates about changes to care delivery operations. For the most current information, go

Dassel City Council to conduct emergency meeting

DASSEL, MN – The Mayor has called an emergency meeting of the Dassel City Council this evening (Tue, Mar 17) at 6 p.m. The meeting will take place in the Community Room at the Dassel City Hall. The purpose of the meeting will be to implement COVID-19 procedures/processes and adopt Resolution 2020-009.

Great River Regional Libraries closed until the end of March

COKATO, MN – Monday, March 16 – All Great River RegionalLibraries will be closed March 16 through the end of March.

Great River Regional Library (GRRL) has made the decision to close all libraries based on social distancing guidance from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH).
All libraries are closing today, Monday, March 16 at 6 p.m. through the end of March.
The library asks patrons to keep the items they currently have, and not return any items at this time. All due dates and items on hold are extended through April 8, and will be extended as long as the libraries are closed.

Memo from Superintendent Jeff Powers regarding school closing

DASSEL, COKATO, MN – Dear Dassel-Cokato Families,

In response to the COVID 19 outbreak, and the Governor’s decision to close schools, we will be running a 2 hour late start schedule on Monday, March 16 and canceling school and all activities beginning on Tuesday, March 17 for the remainder of the week. Consider this an extension of spring break with no instruction being provided.

The purpose of the 2 hour late start tomorrow is for teachers to prepare directions for students and ensure that students have the materials they need for each of their classes in case we have an extended period of school closure past March 27.

The uncertainty of this situation is going to require regular communication and flexibility. Please watch the district website for updates.

Thank you for your trust and support. We will get through this together.


Jeff Powers

Memo from DC School Superintendent Jeff Powers regarding COVID-19

DASSEL, COKATO, MN – Dear Dassel-Cokato Staff and Families,

All of us have questions and concerns regarding the coronavirus (COVID-19). The situation our country finds itself in is new and uncertain. I want to assure you that our district leadership team is carefully monitoring best practices in an effort to keep staff and students as safe as possible.

The district is closely following the guidance of the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH), the Minnesota Department of Education (MDE), and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). We are also in contact with Wright County Public Health.

At this time, CDC does not recommend widespread school closures. If we have a student, staff, or another person directly within our school community who contracts COVID-19, MDH and our county health organizations will be working with us closely to determine the need for, and possible duration of, a school closure. The CDC Decision Making Tree can be viewed at:

Although there is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) there are specific steps you can take to protect yourself and others:

Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
Avoid close contact with people who are sick
Put distance between yourself and other people if COVID-19 is spreading in your community. This is especially important for people who are at higher risk of getting very sick.
Stay home if you are sick, except to get medical care.
Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow. Throw used tissues in the trash.
If you are sick: You should wear a facemask when you are around other people (e.g., sharing a room or vehicle) and before you enter a healthcare provider’s office. If you are not able to wear a facemask (for example, because it causes trouble breathing), then you should do your best to cover your coughs and sneezes, and people who are caring for you should wear a facemask if they enter your room. Learn what to do if you are sick.
If you are NOT sick: You do not need to wear a facemask unless you are caring for someone who is sick (and they are not able to wear a facemask). Facemasks may be in short supply and they should be saved for caregivers.
Clean AND disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks.
If surfaces are dirty, clean them: Use detergent or soap and water prior to disinfection.

Children with severe underlying health conditions like heart disease, lung disease, diabetes may need to consider self-quarantine. Please contact Jenny Heidecker LSN at (320)286-4204 with questions about your child.

Staff or students who travel to countries labeled with level 3 travel alerts will be required to complete a 14 day self-quarantine period before returning to school. The level 3 list of countries can be found at:

Within our schools we are reviewing and upgrading our cleaning products where necessary, thoroughly cleaning shared equipment such as chromebooks and common areas/surfaces, and increasing student and staff access to hand sanitizers. We will also be limiting large group gatherings in accordance with CDC and State guidelines including canceling field trips and events as necessary and prudent. Visitors to school will also be limited.

This is a very fluid situation that we are monitoring closely. Our website will be updated as things change and further communication will be sent out to staff and families.

For additional information, see MDH’s COVID-19 website and the CDC’s COVID-19 website.

We will get through this together. Thank you for your understanding and support.


Jeff Powers