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New BWCA permit site crashes on first day

Plus: cold eases, slightly, in Minnesota; George Will thinks Klobuchar is Democrats’ best chance in 2020; Lincoln billboard next to Native American housing building creates controversy; and more.

MinnPost photo by Greta Kaul
Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness
If only the Forest Service had spent the past month or so working out the bugs in this … MPR’s Dan Kraker reports: “A new reservation system for the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness permits malfunctioned not long after it went online Wednesday morning. … The new system was intended to boost security. But it also ended the lottery system that for years was how the U.S. Forest Service granted its limited number of day-use permits to boaters who want to use the few Boundary Waters lakes that allow motors.”

“Calm cold” is the “dry heat” of the north. The Star Tribune’s Paul Walsh reports: “The Twin Cities and much of Minnesota awoke to yet another day of bitterly cold weather Thursday. … But it’s a calm cold. … The winds are easing up, making the windchill factor less of a factor.”

WaPo’s own George Will has a column touting Klobuchar 2020. He writes: “When Democrats are done flirting with such insipidity, their wandering attentions can flit to a contrastingly serious candidacy, coming soon from Minnesota. The Land of 10,000 Lakes and four unsuccessful presidential candidates (Harold Stassen, Hubert Humphrey, Eugene McCarthy, Walter Mondale) now has someone who could break the state’s losing streak. Sen. Amy Klobuchar is the person perhaps best equipped to send the current president packing.

Is this one of those teachable moments? The Duluth News Tribune’s Brooks Johnson writes: “In 1862, President Abraham Lincoln signed off on the execution of 38 Dakota men in Mankato following the U.S.-Dakota War. It remains the largest mass hanging in U.S. history. … So, when a billboard of Lincoln with the phrase ‘Humility’ appeared on West Second Street just outside Duluth’s American Indian Community Housing Organization, it was not received well by some.”

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In other news …

Interesting:No need to torch the tracks: This is how BNSF keeps trains running in bitter cold” [Duluth News Tribune]

Prescription drug costs, social media privacy:Eye on possible White House bid, Klobuchar plans D.C. agenda” [Star Tribune]

That’s a relief:Xcel Energy Lifts Request To Gas Customers To Lower Thermostats” [WCCO]

Congratulations!Lifelong Pioneer Press Treasure Hunter scoops up the $10K medallion – Twin Cities” [Pioneer Press]