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Hopes for the community dashed in 2001

Ken's Korner
Ken Johnston

2001 was an interesting year in Rainy River. It was a year in which our communal foundation was rocked by many different events.
Since I returned to Rainy River to work at the paper in late 1988, I have always believed that this community has tremendous potential to become a bigger and bustling place. Despite the fears of its decline once the railroad pulled out, I maintained my confidence that it could rise from the ashes and fly higher than ever.
In 2001 there was great hope that the industrial buildings erected in the west end of town and along the highway would begin to produce products that would employ many locals and insure our future as a strong economic force in the Rainy River District.
The big blue building, known as Globeco and Coryan last year still sits idle and has as such for quite some time; albeit I was convinced that it was going to happen when Coryan took it over.
The building on the highway, Koenamen Lumber, operates sporadically and rarely for very long.
In the mean time we sold off one of the pillars of our community, the electric utility. Taking just that much more of our identity away.
A few weeks ago a councillor asked questions about whether the town should pursue a mega-dump like Emo.
Councillor Marchuk deserves some credit for asking that question, for if our leaders do not pursue opportunities that could keep Rainy River economically solvent, those fears about the railroad run-through make be realized.
–Until then,