The Rooster Crows – May 16, 2014

The spring of 2014 continues to give the cold shoulder to the northern plains. The temperature did get up to 60 on Tuesday, May 6, and up to 62 on Wednesday, May 7, but only registered a high of 46 on Thursday, May 8, the 69th anniversary of VE Day, and 44 on Monday, May 12. In addition to cool temperatures, Mother Nature has also been providing an ample supply of wind, along with more rain. An inch of rain on Thursday evening, another ½-inch on the evening of Mothers’ Day, Sunday, May 11, and another ½-inch on Monday evening brought the total for the week to over 2 inches. Wheat fields are growing and looking good, right now, but the 2014 corn and soybean crops are still in the seed bin, waiting to be planted. The TV weather forecasters are predicting some warmer, drier weather ahead, so there is a light at the end of the tunnel, providing some hope that planting will be able to commence in earnest by the end of the week. With the southern plains from Kansas south already suffering from extreme heat and drought, though, all here are hoping that the light at the end of the tunnel doesn’t turn out to be an oncoming freight train. Although, with grain terminals from Montana through North Dakota and into Minnesota unable to move the 2013 crop due to oil traffic from western North Dakota oil fields tying up the tracks, even an oncoming freight train might be welcome, as long as it was pulling in some empty grain cars.

Maverick James Holtman, better known as M. J. to his friends, accompanied his grandpa, Harvey Bergstrom to the Rutland General Store for pancakes and a session with the Assembled Wise Men on the mornings of Wednesday and Thursday, May 7 & 8. M. J. is the younger son of Wade & Kayla (Bergstrom) Holtman. He lives in East Grand Forks MN, where his Dad is an independent over the road truck driver and his Mom is employed by a bank. M. J., age 2½, also has an older brother, William, age 7, who will get his turn to have fun at Grandpa  & Grandma’s farm in the near future.

The father-son team of Denny and Brian Pherson, new owners of the residence at 311 Ross Street, has commenced the task of cleaning up the premises and getting it ready for renovation work. The appearance of the premises has been greatly improved by the removal of several dead trees, some of which had been blown over or broken off by recent high winds.  The residence was originally built by Otto & Mildred Meyers to serve as their family home and as a maternity hospital back in the early 1950’s. The Pherson team purchased the property from the City of Rutland back in April. In addition to the Meyers family, other owners/occupants of the property include Victor & Hjalmer Strand; Mr.  & Mrs. Robert Rokke; Norbert & Beverly Kulzer; Myron & Jackie Kluge; Cecil & Dorothy Philips; Mitch & Dawn Mahrer; and, Brent & Mary Lee.

“Are you a man or a mouse?” was the question that Larry Erickson was asking himself as he lay on the basement floor in the Erickson farmhouse one mile east and one mile south of Rutland on Tuesday, May 6. Larry had gone down into the basement to retrieve something that he needed, but didn’t realize until he got to the bottom of the stairs that his son, Jake, the 5th generation of Ericksons to occupy the house, had been combating a spring invasion of field mice with some “sticky” mouse traps, the kind that entrap the mice with sticky glue on a sheet of heavy duty paper. As he crossed the floor, Larry stepped on one of these sticky mousetraps and it stuck to the sole of his shoe, flopping wildly as he walked. Larry figured that he could get rid of the sticky sheet by stepping on the non-sticky edge, thus pulling the mousetrap free of his foot as he walked along. The glue was a lot stronger than he thought, though, and, instead of his foot pulling free, both feet ended up stuck to the mousetrap, and his forward momentum sent him crashing headlong into the cold, hard concrete of the basement floor. Larry reports that he sustained a cut on his forehead, a mashed nose, broken glasses and a severe bruise to his pride from the fall. “Build a better mousetrap, and the world will beat a path to your door,” the old-timers used to say. Larry is not certain that the sticky traps are a better mousetrap, but he can sure attest to their effectiveness as a mantrap.

Retired NoDak Mutual Insurance Agent Roger Lunde of Forman stopped in at The Rutland General Store on the morning of Thursday, May 8, to pick up tickets for the Mothers’ Day Brunch at the Coteau des Prairies Lodge. Roger said that he had volunteered to do the cooking and clean-up on Mothers’ Day, and tickets for the Mothers’ Day Brunch seemed like the most efficient way to fulfill his obligation. Although he has retired from the general insurance business, Roger is still NoDak’s Multi-Peril Crop Insurance representative in Sargent County.

Members of Bergman-Evenson Post #215 of the American Legion met at 7:00 p.m. on Thursday, May 8, in the Dining Room of the Lariat Bar, with Post Commander Larry Christensen presiding. Post Chaplain Ted Lee reported that the Veterans’ Memorial is on track to be ready by the 4th of July, in time for the Rutland School Reunion scheduled for that weekend.  Larry Christensen reported that the local Post would be sending Kian McKibbin, who will be a senior at Sargent Central High School next fall, to North Dakota Boys State in June. Post members decided to dedicate the net proceeds of the October pancake, sausage and egg breakfast to Service Dogs for America of Jud ND. Service dogs are not seeing-eye dogs, but are trained to assist disabled individuals with the tasks of daily living.  Service dogs are of great benefit to veterans who have suffered disabilities while serving their country. Commander Christensen reminded members that Memorial Day observances on Monday, May 26, will commence with Assembly at Calvin Jacobson’s residence at 9:45 a.m., followed by Military Rites at the Nordland Cemetery at 10: 15 a.m., Military Rites at the Rutland Cemetery at 10:30 a.m.; and, Memorial Day Program at 11:00 a.m. in the Rutland Town Hall.

The Sargent County Ambulance Service made two calls in Rutland last week.  On the evening of Thursday, May 8, Quentin Hoistad was transported to the Oakes Hospital suffering from a respiratory ailment. On Friday evening, May 9, Levi Jablonsky, visiting at the home of his grandparents, Larry & Carolyn Christensen, suffered a reaction to a prescription medication and was transported to a medical facility in Fargo for treatment. Quentin’s and Levi’s many friends in the Rutland community wish them both a swift recovery and return home. The community also extends its thanks to the volunteers on the Forman and Milnor Ambulance squads who respond to these emergencies on a moment’s notice.

Diane Kulzer returned home on Friday, May 9, after undergoing diagnostic medical procedures at the Sanford Medical Center in Sioux Falls SD. Diane had endured a bout with cancer a year ago, but came back from Sioux Falls with a clean bill of health last Friday. Her husband, Mike Kulzer, reports that the medical facility in Sioux Falls is enormous. Diane’s first procedures were near the 22nd Street entrance, but her room was at 18th Street, four blocks away, Mike reported, and it was inside all the way. The Kulzers had gone to Sioux Falls on Monday, May 5, and had returned home with the good news on Friday, May 9.

Mothers’ Day, May 11, became Grandmother’s and Grandfather’s Day for Lisa and Tom Wyum of this community when their son and daughter-in-law, Chris & Merissa Kann became the parents of a brand new baby girl, Harper Rae Kann, born on Sunday, May 11, at Sanford Hospital in Fargo.  Harper is Chris & Merissa’s first child, Tom & Lisa’s first grandchild. According to Grandma Lisa, she weighed in at 7 pounds 3 ounces and stood 19.5 inches tall in her bare feet. Harper is residing with her parents at their home in Lidgerwood. Her Dad farms with Grandpa Tom and Great-Uncle Brad Wyum at Rutland, and her Mom is an auditor with RDO Equipment of Fargo.  Harper’s Great Grandma is Katie Wyum of Fargo.

More than 200 diners took in the Mothers’ Day Brunch at the Coteau des Prairies Lodge on Sunday, May 11, reports Debbie Liermark, an employee of The Rutland General Store. The Mother’s Day Brunch was a cooperative effort in which the Coteau des Prairies Lodge furnished the venue and The Rutland General Store prepared the food. The weather cooperated as well, providing some sunshine and a spectacular view of the vast prairie to the north and of the Coteau des Prairies hills to the south.

Maria Breker & Philip Breker report that they ran the half Marathon in the huge Fargo Marathon event on Saturday, May 10. More than 23,000 participants competed in Marathon events, which ranged from a 5-kilometer (about 3 miles) run/walk to the full, Marathon race of more than 26 miles. Rutland native Anna Weber ran in the 10-kilometer event, reports Maria. The Fargo Marathon draws competitors from all over the world, as well as from Rutland.

Joel Susag returned to Rutland on the evening of Sunday, May 11, after spending the previous 2 weeks “on the road.” Joel wasn’t singing with Willy Nelson, though. He had departed Rutland on Tuesday, April 22, bound for Seattle WA, where he helped his brother, Ron Susag, pack up and move to Las Vegas. Ron had recently retired from a career with the Boeing Co. at Seattle and decided to move from an area of clouds and rain to one that is sunny and arid. After helping Ron get settled in his new digs, Joel returned to Fargo on Friday, May 9, spent Saturday and Sunday with his brother & sister-in-law, David & Marcia Susag, and returned to Rutland on Sunday evening. Joel reports that the temperatures in Las Vegas were in the 70’s & 80’s, in marked contrast to Monday morning’s 41 degree reading in Rutland.

Rutland City Auditor Deborah Banish reports that the City’s application for “Safe Routes for Non-Drivers” funding to assist with much needed sidewalk improvements in Rutland has come up dry. Rutland’s project was number seven on the North Dakota Department of Transportation’s priority list, but available funds allowed only 4 grants to be awarded by the Department.  The City Council plans to resubmit Rutland’s application for the next round of funding, says Debbie. Of the 10 projects given the highest priority by the DOT, only two, Rutland and Cass County, were in the eastern half of the State. All the rest were in or near the area being impacted by the Bakken oil boom.

The Rutland Community Club met at 7:00 p.m. on Monday, May 12, in the dining room at the Lariat Bar. The Club’s financial report showed approximately $17,000.00 available for community projects. Lori McLaen discussed preparations for Uff-Da Day 2014, which will be on Sunday, October 5, this year. This will be the 30th annual Uff-Da Day, and it will only take 70 more to get to 100. Other topics discussed included: Children’s Summer Theater; the coronation of Miss Rutland in June; and, Memorial Day. Work Group #4 will be in charge of the Memorial Day potluck dinner.  Paul Anderson discussed the numerous DVD’s of Rutland community plays and other events that are now available, and it was decided to ask Jen Christianson if a display could be set up at Alley Cuts. A donation of $10.00, or more, entitles the donor to a DVD, Paul stated. The next meeting of the Rutland Community Club is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. on Monday, June 9, at the Rutland Town Hall.

The Rutland Cemetery Association held its annual meeting at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, May 13, in the Community Room at the Sargent County Bank’s Rutland Station. Board chairman Norbert Kulzer presided at the meeting.  Chuck Sundlie was elected to the Association’s board, & Paul Anderson was re-elected for another 3-year term. Richard Lysne has been hired to keep the cemetery, including the newer addition on the west end, mowed. The members present approved a motion to require that cremated remains, whether interred over an existing gravesite or in a new site, must be identified with a ground level marker. Mike Anderson had offered some trees to the Rutland Cemetery, and the board will determine where new trees should be planted. Norbert reported that some of the replacement trees planted last year did not make it through the winter, but several others that looked sick and scrawny last fall appear to be doing well this spring.  Roger Pearson reported that gopher control efforts appear to have been successful, at least for the present. Members of the Rutland Cemetery Association’s governing board are Norbert Kulzer, chairman; Mary Woytassek, secretary/treasurer; Roger Pearson; Paul Anderson; and, Chuck Sundlie.

Kelly (Anderson) Hawkenson of Columbia Falls MT, accompanied by her aunt, Pat (Anderson) Kulzer of Salmon Prairie MT, arrived in Rutland on the evening of Tuesday, May 13. They report that roads were in good condition all the way from northwestern Montana to southeastern North Dakota. The Anderson girls are planning to spend about 2 weeks visiting family and friends in the Rutland area, including their Mother & Grandmother, Irene Anderson. They are residing at the home of Pat’s brother, Kelly’s uncle, Paul Anderson, during their stay here.

Rockin’ Rodney Erickson reports that he has recently upgraded his aerial crop spraying enterprise with the acquisition of a turbine powered Thrush monoplane. The Thrush replaces Rodney’s Ag-Cat biplane that was powered by a 660 horsepower radial engine. The turbine engine that powers the Thrush generates 990 horsepower, states Rodney, enabling the plane to carry bigger loads and cover more acres for each takeoff and landing. The turbine engine is also a lot quieter and more efficient than the piston powered radial engine, States Rodney. So,the next time you see Rodney overhead, he will be riding on “Whispering Wings,” rather than behind a “Roaring Radial.”

Congratulations to the Sargent Central Envirothon Team that took 3rd place in the North Dakota State Envirothon Competition held at Crystal Springs Bible Camp near Medina ND on May 7, 8 & 9. The Sargent Central team took First Place in the “Soils Trail” segment of the competition, according to Bonnie Anderson, an employee of the Wild Rice Soil Conservation District, a sponsor of the event. Members of the 2014 Sargent Central Envirothon team are Brandon Wyum; Hailey Hamilton; Taylor Wyum; Josh Christianson; and, Marcus Mahrer. Mr. Kenan Layden, Science teacher at Sargent Central, coached the team. Over the past decade and a half, Sargent Central’s Envirothon team has consistently finished at or near the top in State competition, and has competed successfully at the national level. The Wild Rice Soil Conservation District, the Sargent Central School District, the students, teachers, and parents involved are all to be commended for their commitment to excellence.

Well, that’s the news from Rutland for this week. For more information about what’s going on in the little city that can, check out the community’s internet web site at, and stop by the Rutland blog and Facebook page while you’re cruising around in cyberspace, too. Remember to keep the pressure on the U. S. Postal Service and the North Dakota Congressional delegation to SAVE OUR POST OFFICE!  Later.

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