5 things to know today: What-a-tower, 'Mix-and-match', Vaccination deadline, Early shopping, 'Moorhead=fantastic' | INFORUM

Local News 23-10-2021 IN FORUM 35

1. Moorhead water tower named 'Tank of the Year'

Moorhead's newly painted southside water tower has bested 300 others from across the country and won recognition as "Tank of the Year."

The tower's wrap-around mural was designed by Moorhead artists and graphic designers Stephen Dorsey and Jack Lunde, who also created the artwork for two other towers in the city.

"I'm very, very excited and proud," said Dorsey, who is a freelance artist and graphic designer. "Jack and I thought the design really encapsulated Moorhead."

Read more from The Forum's Barry Amundson

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2. Eligible Moderna, J&J recipients can get 'mix-and-match' boosters in Minnesota

A COVID-19 vaccination is prepared to be administered. (Forum News Service file photo)

A COVID-19 vaccination is prepared to be administered. (Forum News Service file photo)

Minnesota providers can begin administering Moderna and Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 booster shots to eligible residents, Gov. Tim Walz announced on Friday, Oct. 22.

The expansion does not create more categories of those eligible, a list including those 6 months from their last dose who are over 17 and have health conditions, are over 65, live in group settings or are front-line workers.

But it does allow recipients of Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines to join a booster-eligible population who had received the Pfizer vaccine. The expansion also allows a so-called "mix-and-match" approach in which recipients may receive a booster of a vaccine separate from that they received initially.

Read more from Forum News Service's Paul John Scott

3. As self-imposed vaccination deadlines loom, some North Dakota hospitals report high uptake. Other facilities refuse to release data

Melodi Krank administers the Fargo area's first COVID-19 vaccine to Dr. Avish Nagpal at Sanford Medical Center on Dec. 14, 2020. David Samson / The Forum

Melodi Krank administers the Fargo area's first COVID-19 vaccine to Dr. Avish Nagpal at Sanford Medical Center on Dec. 14, 2020. David Samson / The Forum

With pressure on North Dakota hospitals to get their employees vaccinated against COVID-19, some health care providers have seen their inoculation rates rise in recent months, while others refused to release information about their progress.

Several of the state’s largest health systems are in the home stretch of internal vaccination campaigns ahead of looming, self-imposed November deadlines. Leaders at hospitals that have required the shot as a condition of employment say widespread vaccination is an important step in ensuring safe interactions with patients and maintaining a healthy workforce amid severe staffing shortages.

In July, Sanford Health became the first hospital system in the region to mandate vaccination among its employees, setting a Nov. 1 deadline for all staff members to be fully vaccinated or approved for exemptions from the shot — or risk losing their jobs. The announcement from the Sioux Falls, South Dakota-based provider preceded a cascade of vaccine mandates among other hospitals in North Dakota, including Essentia Health in Fargo, Altru in Grand Forks and CHI Health in Bismarck and several rural counties.

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4. With supply chain woes, Fargo area retailers suggest shopping early and local for Christmas

Greg Danz, owner of Zandbroz Variety in downtown Fargo, shows off part of his store's book selection Tuesday, Oct. 19, 2021. Danz says books shouldn't be too badly hurt by supply chain issues this holiday season, but other items — particularly toys made overseas — have become harder to get and could end up in short supply this year. Helmut Schmidt / The Forum

Greg Danz, owner of Zandbroz Variety in downtown Fargo, shows off part of his store's book selection Tuesday, Oct. 19, 2021. Danz says books shouldn't be too badly hurt by supply chain issues this holiday season, but other items — particularly toys made overseas — have become harder to get and could end up in short supply this year. Helmut Schmidt / The Forum

Nancy Frid is trying to be philosophical about her Christmas stock. She's aiming for Zen.

The co-owner of Vintage Point doesn't want to freak out about having stock stuck out there in the Great Somewhere, and not in the store.

The cozy south Fargo shop, like every other retailer big and small, is bound to the caprice of a complex and gummed-up supply chain.

Pre-Christmas shipping schedules have been trashed, thanks to the effects of the continuing COVID-19 pandemic.

Read more from The Forum's Helmut Schmidt

5. Moorhead equals fantastic for growing social media group

Marsha Wichmann, Chris Orth and Mara Morken are the administrators for the Facebook group page titled Moorhead=Fantastic. David Samson / The Forum

Marsha Wichmann, Chris Orth and Mara Morken are the administrators for the Facebook group page titled Moorhead=Fantastic. David Samson / The Forum

Mara Morken, who moved to Moorhead when she was a young girl, said she couldn't wait to leave after graduating from high school.

She spent 15 years on the East Coast before deciding to return to the city where she grew up.

When she returned, she found a much more sophisticated metropolitan area with an active arts community and a much more laid back lifestyle.

Now, she said, she's "probably Moorhead's biggest fan."

With her change of heart, it's no wonder that she would started the neighborly "Moorhead=Fantastic" Facebook group after moving back about seven years ago.

Read more from The Forum's Barry Amundson


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