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Brainerd International Raceway asks for help cleaning up after storm


The Brainerd International Raceway is canceling an event Wednesday night because of damage caused by the severe storms that passed through the area Sunday night.

The high winds twisted a section of bleachers along the dragstrip, took the roof off the main shop and the press box, flipped over several RVs and dumpsters, and uprooted numerous trees, track officials said.

Officials at the track are asking for volunteers to help clean up the extensive damage.

The track complex was without power as of Monday morning, and is not able to sell tickets either in person or online until it's restored.

BIR officials say they need volunteers to help them clean up the debris in the complex, and especially need people who have chainsaws. Those who are interested should check in at the front gate.

So far the only event that's been canceled is the Wednesday Night Street Drags. A superbike racing event scheduled for this weekend is still on, according to track officials.

Damage throughout the region

A trail of storm damage was reported from Fargo, North Dakota, through the Brainerd Lakes area down Interstate 94 into the metro, MPR News reports.

Damage appears to be the most extensive in the Brainerd Lakes area in Crow Wing County. Sheriff Todd Dahl said in a news release Monday that the hardest-hit area was the western part of the county from Baxter to Pequot Lakes.

Many trees and power lines were knocked over in the storm, and several thousand residents are still without power. Numerous roads are still impassable because they're blocked by downed trees, according to the Brainerd Dispatch.

The Pillager Fire and Rescue department reported on its Facebook page crews have been out the entire day cutting down trees, looking for downed power lines and clearing debris.

They also responded to two fire calls Monday morning. In one case, crews had to cut through downed trees to get through to the residence.

Two of the state's most popular resorts, Madden's and Cragun's, both saw damage. Both of them posted brief messages on their Facebook pages saying their resorts and golf courses were closed due to the storm.

"If all goes as planned, we will re-open portions of the property in two weeks," said Madden's.

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