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Bob Kitchen Honored With Volunteer Recognition Award
St. Louis County presented a Volunteer Recognition Award to Bob Kitchen of Hibbing on Tuesday, February 27, 2007 at the Hibbing City Council as part of its regular St. Louis County Board meeting. Seventh District Commissioner Steve Raukar presented the St. Louis County Volunteer Recognition Bob Kitchen.
Kitchen, a lifetime Hibbing resident, has been the driving force behind some wonderfully successful projects in Hibbing. The Centennial Fountain, on City Hall grounds, is one such permanent mark that he, along with others, dreamed up and accomplished for the enjoyment of all. And the walkways ‑ compiled of 5000 engraved bricks ‑ that were purchased by citizens in remembrance of significant events or people, thus providing ownership and a personal link to the community’s past ‑ is another project that Bob Kitchen spearheaded, worked diligently at, and completed. Kitchen now plans to organize an effort to add colored lights to the Centennial Fountain in memory of local veterans.
The Hull Rust Mineview Park also bears Bob Kitchen’s thumbprint and creative mind. Recognizing a need to improve the site, he arranged to have truck loads of dirt brought in to fill in, level, and prepare the site, with the end result being a place to drive up to, and get a spectacular view of the Hull Rust Mine and large equipment associated with mining history. Bob is still working to improve the site by providing interpretive history about mining and its linkage to the Great Lakes, along a walking path that winds down to the mine’s edge. And, he is making progress on getting the Hull Rust on the US Postage stamp!
Bob Kitchen also served as Hibbing’s Aviation Days Chairman from 1955 to 1993. This was a huge undertaking, with the Air Show and parade providing marvelous entertainment for the entire region. 1993 marked Hibbing’s Centennial Year and Bob served as the Committee’s chair. Everyone knew he was the guy who could make things happen, and happen they did. Not willing to live on his legacy, now Bob would like to see another air show at the Chisholm‑Hibbing airport in 2008.
Another project that he is working on is to put funding together to acquire a new PA system and construct a stage at the cemetery, in order that Veterans Day programs can be heard by all in attendance.
Commissioner Steve Raukar said: “Bob Kitchen is a dreamer, an innovator, an achiever. All of his accomplishments: bettering the Hibbing area, providing for a better future, and life‑long memories, make Bob deserving of the St. Louis County Volunteer Recognition Award. His dedication and hard work are realized and appreciated.”