John Lauritsen

John Lauritsen is an Emmy award-winning reporter from Montevideo, Minn. He joined WCCO-TV in late-July of 2007. Two days after he started, the Interstate 35W bridge collapsed. Before his television career, John grew up on a farm near Milan, Minnesota and graduated from Montevideo Senior High School. He received a Master’s Degree in mass communications from St. Cloud State University.
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VITALS
Joined WCCO: 2007
Hometown: Milan/Montevideo, Minnesota
Alma Mater: St. Cloud State University

FAVORITES
Music: Bruce Springsteen, Bob Seger, Sting, country music
Movie: Four-way tie: Point Break, Gangs of New York, The Town, and Heat
TV Show: The Office
Book: Richard Adams, Watership Down
Food: Thai
Local Restaurant: The Lotus
Hidden MN Gem: Big Bend Township
Sport/Exercise: Tennis, Volleyball, Football, Biking … I love going to the gym
Historical Figure: Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi
Favorite Minnesotan: Bob Dylan
Quote: “Without the voice of reason, every faith is its own curse.” — Sting
Vacation Spot: Cambria, California
Holiday: Christmas/Easter
Planet: Pluto (you can’t lose your planet status once you’ve earned it)

THIS OR THAT
Facebook or Twitter? Twitter
Cats or Dogs? Dogs
Beatles or Rolling Stones? Rolling Stones
Comedy or Tearjerker? Comedy
Phone Call or Text Message? Phone Call
Mac or PC? PC
Coffee or Tea? Tea
Paper or Plastic? Plastic
Morning Person or Night Person? Night
East Coast vs. West Coast? West
Star Trek or Star Wars? Star Wars
‘Grey Duck’ or ‘Goose’? Grey Duck

John Lauritsen is an Emmy award-winning reporter from Montevideo, Minn. He joined WCCO-TV in late-July of 2007. Two days after he started, the Interstate 35W bridge collapsed.

Before his television career, John grew up on a farm near Milan, Minnesota and graduated from Montevideo Senior High School. He received a Master’s Degree in mass communications from St. Cloud State University, and has also taught a class there as well. He credits growing up on a farm and going to school in a small town with helping him become the reporter he is today.

He began his career at KSAX-TV in Alexandria, Minn., before moving to Waterloo, Iowa, where he worked for KWWL-TV. John also worked at Channel 12 in Brooklyn Park, Minn., before coming to WCCO-TV. He has been a reporter, anchor, sports reporter, sports anchor, editor, producer, and photographer during his television career.

During his time at WCCO-TV, John has covered a variety of stories. He has reported on everything from floods to tornadoes to blizzards that have dumped nearly two feet of snow on Minnesota. You can also find John covering a crime story, a fire, a human interest story, or a sporting event.

John’s favorite stories are those that highlight a special moment in someone’s life. In 2008, he reported on a soldier who came home from Iraq and surprised his daughter at her volleyball game.

And though he isn’t a fan of snakes, John reported on Minnesota’s only poisonous snake population in southeastern Minnesota and he managed not to get bit in the process.

When he’s not reporting, John can be found at the gym or playing in one of three volleyball leagues that keep him busy year-round. He also plays in a football league in the fall and is an active tennis player.

In 2009, he ran the Twin Cities Marathon for the first time. He has also tried surfing, skydiving and rock climbing, and is an avid reader whenever he can find time to sit down.

John lives in Maple Grove with his wife, Jessica, and children, Harlow and Bo.

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most recent stories2 John Lauritsen

(credit: Tom Ames/YouTube)

Fire Damages Several Buildings In Downtown Madelia

The mayor of a small southern Minnesota city says a major fire has destroyed or damaged at least a-half dozen commercial buildings on Main Street.

02/03/2016

(credit: CBS)

Parents Demand Stillwater Schools Stay Open

Parents in the Stillwater School District made it clear Thursday that they are against the district closing three elementary schools. The district wants to close Withrow, Marine and Oak Park schools in what is being called the BOLD proposal.

01/28/2016

Matt & Beth Mason (credit: The Mason Family)

Minnesota Man Has Close Encounter With Shark

A Minnesota man says he is lucky to be in one piece after a close call with a 14-foot tiger shark. Matt Mason and his wife, Beth, were paddleboarding in Hawaii Saturday morning when something suddenly started pushing his board through the water.

01/26/2016

(credit: CBS)

Le Sueur Church Community Shaken After 2 Men Steal Historic Bell

Authorities in Le Sueur County say two men are responsible for stealing a historic church bell and then trying to sell parts of it to a scrap yard. Investigators say the bell was taken from St. Paul’s Lutheran Church at German Lake last Monday night.

01/25/2016

(credit: Kiera Wilson)

Students Attending Rally Get Caught In East Coast Blizzard

Some Minnesota students found out first-hand what it was like to be stuck in that East Coast blizzard. About 200 teenagers from the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis traveled to Washington D.C. this week for a pro-life rally.

01/24/2016

(credit: STAN HONDA/AFP/Getty Images)

Despite Volatile Stock Market, Experts Say Don’t Panic With Your Money

At one point, the Dow plunged more than 500 points Wednesday before bouncing back to close off by nearly 250. Plummeting oil prices and China’s economic slowdown are dragging the markets down.

01/20/2016

(credit: CBS)

Basketball Helps Reinvigorate Struggling North Minneapolis High

A huge high school basketball matchup Tuesday night was about more than just the game — the top-ranked North High School Polars faced the top-ranked Hopkins Royals.

01/19/2016

Martin Luther King

Good Question: How Did MLK Day Become A National Holiday?

People across the country celebrated Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Monday. It’s been recognized as a national holiday for more than 30 years. So how did Martin Luther King Jr. Day become a national holiday? Good Question.

01/18/2016

(credit: CBS)

Good Questions: Warming Up The Car, Wind Chill & State Of The Union

Each Friday, we answer some of our viewers’ burning questions. This week, John Lauritsen finds the best way to warm up your car in the winter, some unfamiliar faces at the State of the Union address, and how meteorologists measure wind chill.

01/15/2016

(credit: CBS)

Family Travels Across Globe To See Son Play MN College Basketball

Parents will go to great lengths to watch their kids play sports. In this case, John and Tania Turnbull traveled nearly 10,000 miles to watch their son Jack play for Ridgewater College in Willmar.

01/15/2016

(credit: CBS)

Wrestling Ref With Cerebral Palsy Gives Back To Sport He Loves

On a cold January afternoon, a 9th grade wrestling match took place between Edina and Plymouth. Young wrestlers with little experience took center stage, and right in the middle of the action was Joe Steffenhagen.

01/12/2016

(credit: DNR)

Finding Minnesota: Minneopa Bison At Minnesota State Park

Minnesota State Park is its own winter wonderland. You can find evidence of wildlife everywhere in its serene surroundings. A pair of cascading waterfalls are the only interruptions to the January quiet. The waterfalls used to be the park’s main attraction. But in September that changed, when new residents arrived – Minneopa bison.

01/10/2016

(credit: CBS)

Parents Rally Against Stillwater School Closings

Some parents in the Stillwater Area School District are trying to stop a proposal that would close three elementary schools. The district is planning to shut down the schools beginning in 2017. Officials say the schools are no longer efficient to operate because of their low enrollment.

01/05/2016

(credit: CBS)

Vikings Home Playoff Game Will Give Local Businesses A Boost

Buffalo Wild Wings is right across the street from TCF Bank Stadium. Right next door to what will be the first and possibly the last Vikings playoff game at the stadium.

01/04/2016

(credit: CBS)

Stillwater Neighbors At Odds Over Pond Skating Rink

Some Twin Cities neighbors are at odds over a holding pond that’s been turned into a skating rink. The pond is in the Millbrook neighborhood in Stillwater.

12/30/2015

(credit: CBS)

Study: Twin Cities Real Estate Market Almost Fully Recovered From Crash

A University of St. Thomas study shows the Twin Cities housing market is getting close to where it was before the crash we saw seven years ago, and it predicts median home sale prices will jump 6 to 8 percent next year.

12/29/2015

(credit: CBS)

Good Question: Where Does Box Office Money Go?

“Star Wars: The Force Awakens” keeps shattering box-office records. The seventh episode of the saga has now brought in over $1 billion worldwide. So where do all of those box office dollars go? Good Question.

12/28/2015

(credit: CBS)

Western Minn. Father And Son Keep Ancient Art Of ‘Scrimshaw’ Alive

Doug and Brook Pederson run a tree-trimming service in Montevideo. Much of the scraps from their business becomes the canvas for their artwork. Behind the wood carvings is something both ancient and unique, as they work to keep a rare form of art alive.

12/28/2015

(credit: CBS)

Finding Minnesota: Terry Kubista’s Basement Christmas Shire

Like all small towns do, Terry Kubista’s village started with just a few homesteaders and a few houses. Four-and-a-half decades later it has taken over his basement.

12/27/2015

(credit: CBS)

Last-Minute Holiday Shoppers Out In Force

You made your list. You checked it twice — but that does not mean all those holiday errands are finished. With Christmas Eve just hours away, shoppers hit Twin Cities’ grocery stores and shopping malls all day.

12/23/2015

(credit: Dakota County)

Charges: Bank Manager Swindled $640K From Account

A long-time Twin Cities bank employee is facing charges she stole more than $600,000 from a customer. Cynthia Van DuSartz was a manager at Anchor Bank in West St. Paul, where she had worked for nearly 30 years.

12/17/2015

(credit: Facebook)

Parents Question Choice To Sing ‘Allahu Akbar’ At Holiday Concert

Some parents in the Anoka-Hennepin School District are questioning a choir teacher’s decision to use a song about Ramadan performed in Arabic at a holiday concert.

12/17/2015

(credit:  KAREN BLEIER/AFP/Getty Images)

Natural Gas Hits Lowest Price In 14 Years

Some of you may have noticed that your gas bill is cheaper- and it’s not just because you’re using less gas to heat your home.

12/16/2015

(credit: CBS)

Finding Minnesota: Red Wing Man’s Model Tractors Show Decades Of Skill, Artistry

Pete Freiheit was a farm kid who developed a love for history — most of all the tractors used on his farm. So he started tinkering with some tools and built a few model tractors — thousands of them, actually.

12/13/2015

(credit: CBS)

After Tough Loss, Vikings Fans Discouraged But Hopeful

Minnesotans had little confidence going into Thursday’s game against the Cardinals, though the Vikings had a strong showing and had a chance to tie the game, were it not for a fumble in the game’s final seconds.

12/10/2015

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