By Bill Anderson
The cold weather of the past several weeks has thickened the ice on local lakes to 7 inches or more, enough to support the weight of ice fishermen and ice fishing houses. Norbert Kulzer reported that there were three ice fishing houses on Buffalo Lake on Tuesday, December 4, and one on Consolidated Lake, along with a couple of fishermen out on the ice in cold weather fishing gear. Several houses were on the ice at Silver Lake last week, but they had picked up and moved to some other location by Tuesday afternoon. No reports of fishing success have been received, and when fishermen aren’t talking it usually means that they are catching fish and don’t want anyone else to find out about it. Of course, it could mean that there just aren’t many fish being caught, but that’s not as interesting.
Rutland native Dan Narum, Presiding Judge of North Dakota’s Southeast Judicial District for the past several years, was preparing to deliver jury instructions at the conclusion of a trial in the Dickey County Courthouse in Ellendale last Tuesday, November 27, when he stood up from his desk and discovered that his right leg was numb. A terrible pain in his back put him to the floor. Ever the professional, the Judge got himself back to his desk, called the 2 attorneys in the case into his office, explained the situation to them, then delivered the jury instructions to the waiting jurors in written form, and had himself taken to the hospital. He was first taken to Aberdeen, the closest hospital, where a serious back problem was diagnosed. Immediate surgery was necessary, but a surgeon capable of performing it was not available, so Dan made a trip to Sanford Hospital in Fargo where the surgery was performed on Tuesday night. Tests indicated that the surgery had been successful, and, “…when I moved my toes about ¼ of an inch, they really got excited,” Dan reported. On Friday, November 30, he moved to Sanford’s Physical Therapy Unit on South University Drive for what was expected to be 2 weeks of intensive physical therapy, but his recovery and progress was so rapid that he was scheduled to be released from the hospital to return to his home in Lamoure on Wednesday, December 5. Dan states that he has an elk hunt booked in northeastern New Mexico beginning on January 1, and is still planning, and hoping, to be able to make it happen. Well, Dan is a tough and determined guy. If he can’t make it to New Mexico, maybe he can issue a judicial order, and have the elk brought to him. In the meantime, he is recuperating at home, in the care of his wife, Caroline, and their 2 children. Dan’s many friends in Rutland wish him a speedy and complete recovery, and a good hunt, too.
Santa’s Helpers got Rutland’s Community Christmas Tree upright and decorated on the afternoon of Thursday, November 29. Rodney Erickson; Mac Pherson; Jake Erickson; Paul Anderson; and, Jerry Sapa; participated in the project, and will be rewarded by Old St. Nick on Santa Claus Day, Saturday, December 15, for their good deed. The tree is a real beauty, over 20 feet tall and boasting a magnificent spread of branches. It was donated to the community by the Coteau des Prairies Lodge, and by the families of Joe & Patty Breker and Doug & Cher Spieker. Thanks to all involved for this gift that symbolizes the spirit, hope and joy of the Christmas season. As the poet once wrote, “Tis a thing of beauty, and a joy forever.”
Joel Susag returned to Rutland on Friday, November 30, after spending a couple of weeks, including the Thanksgiving holiday, with family in Arizona and Nevada. Joel reports that his sister, Sandy Gertrudas, prepared Thanksgiving dinner at the home of his brother, Ron, in Las Vegas NV. Also present were Joel’s brothers Ivan and Wayne. Joel flew to Fargo via Allegiant Airlines on Tuesday, November 29, and spent the night at the home of his older brother, David, before heading for home on Friday. Welcome home, Joel!
Several Rutland High School alums met at 2:00 p.m. on Sunday, December 2, in the Nordland Fellowship Hall to begin preparations for the 2019 Rutland School Reunion. Those in attendance at the first meeting were: Carolyn (Jacobson) Christensen, Class of ’65; Ronald Narum, Class of ’52; Beverly (Sundlie) Kulzer, Class of ’58; Roger Pearson, Class of ’58; Janice (Brakke) Christensen, Class of ’60; and, Bill Anderson, Class of ’63. The tentative schedule for the Reunion will include a community picnic on Friday, July 5 and a banquet and program on Saturday, July 6, among other activities.
For those Sargent County Natives who have migrated to the Phoenix-Mesa area in the cozy warm State of Arizona but have become lonesome for the faces and voices of fellow North Dakotans, Curt Larson, an enthusiastic participant in the annual southern trek, reminds all that this coming Monday is their chance to speak North Dakotan with their friends and neighbors from God’s Country. The following message was received from Curt on Monday, December 3: “It is only a week away when we will gather together again for our monthly Sargent County Breakfast. The day is Monday, December 10 at 9:00 a.m. at the Golden Corral on north Power. Please mark it on your calendars and pass the word to anyone who is not on my email list. Our topic for discussion is: what are your plans for Christmas? Are you flying back to North Dakota for a family Christmas? Do you have family travelling to Arizona for a family get-together? I would expect there are a few more of you who have ventured down to Arizona for a dose of warmer weather. Temps here have cooled slightly with highs in the lower 60’s and lows in the 40’s. When it rains here, everyone gets excited for a tenth of an inch. We will see you next week.” Thanks to Curt for the message, and we expect a full report on the December gathering next week.
The Rutland City Council met at 5:00 p.m. on Monday, December 3, 2018, in the Rutland Town Hall with Mayor Ronald Narum; Auditor Debbie Banish; and, Council Members Rodney Erickson, Delores Lysne and Bertha Siemieniewski present. Council Member Mike Mahrer was absent. Also present was local resident Bill Anderson. The Council’s Meeting Dates for 2019 were set on the first Monday of each month, at 5:00 p.m., except for holidays when the meeting will be held at the same time on the second Monday. The Council approved: renewal of the liquor license for The Lariat Bar & Grill from January 1 through June 30, 2019, and the renewal of the establishment’s beer & wine license for all of 2019; An agreement with the ND Department of Health, Division of Microbiology, effective January 1, 2019 through December 31, 2019 to perform all bacteriological analyses and required rechecks necessary to comply with State drinking water regulations; Gaming Permit #229 to Bergman-Evenson Post #215 of The American Legion, to conduct a raffle on February 3, 2019; and, mileage reimbursement authorization to Delores Lysne to attend the Tree Care Workshop in Fargo on January 29-30, 2019. Rutland is a “Tree City USA” city, so there is no charge for the conference registration. Mayor Narum reported that there is a problem with the pressure main from the City’s sewer lift station at the corner of First and Cooper Streets to the Municipal Sewage Lagoon west of town that will have to be repaired soon, and that 2 valves between cells at the lagoon also are in need of repair work. This work will be done as soon as weather and the availability of a contractor permit. After reviewing the City’s bills and authorizing payment, and there being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 5:30 p.m. The next meeting of the Rutland City Council is scheduled for 5:00 p.m. on Monday, January 7, 2019 in the Rutland Town Hall.
Some upcoming events in Rutland include: Nordland Lutheran Sunday School Christmas program at 9:00 a.m. on Sunday, December 9, at Nordland Lutheran Church; Rutland Community Club’s December meeting at 5:00 p.m. on Monday, December 10, in the Rutland Town Hall; and, Rutland’s 73rd annual Santa Claus Day, with festivities commencing at 5:00 p.m. on Saturday, December 15, in the Rutland Town Hall, and Santa on hand to hear requests, visit with all, pass out gifts and award Christmas hams.
Some words that aren’t heard much these days: Duty; Honor; Sacrifice; and, Commitment; are being used to describe the late George H. W. Bush, 41st President of the United States of America, and the last of a line of military veterans from the WW I, WW II and Korean War generations who guided our nation from 1945 to 1993. He was the youngest combat pilot in the U. S. Navy at the time his plane was shot down off Iwo Jima in January of 1945. He had attained 94 years of age when he passed away on Friday, November 30, 2018. During his career in business and politics, the son of a wealthy Connecticut family leveraged his inherited wealth to amass a fortune in the Texas oil business; served as a Congressman from Texas; as Chairman of the Republican Party; as Director of the CIA; as Ambassador to China; and, as Vice-President of the United States; before his election as President in 1988. During his Presidency the policy that Truman had begun, and that had been carried out by Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Ford, Carter & Reagan succeeded in bringing about the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union; Eastern Europe was liberated from Soviet oppression and Germany was reunited; the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) was negotiated; Iraqi aggression in Kuwait was defeated by a coalition of nations organized by his administration; and, the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) became the law of the land, allowing more than 40 million Americans to fully participate in the economic, political and social life of the nation. At the time his Presidency ended, the economy was in recession, the budget deficit was out of control and he was not popular. As the achievements of his Presidency have lasted, and memories of the failures have faded, his popularity, like that of predecessors such as Truman and Carter, has rebounded, and he is now recognized as a good and decent man who tried to do right and often succeeded. Duty; Honor; Sacrifice; and, Commitment; were words that were guide posts to George H. W. Bush as he journeyed through this life. The fact that those words aren’t heard much these days is America’s, and the world’s, loss. As of Friday, December 7, there are 97 weeks down and 111 weeks to go until January 20, 2021, when, with some luck and some hard work, those words may once again guide the person elected to serve as President of this Republic.
Well, that’s the news from Rutland for this week. For additional information about what’s going on in the little city that can, check out the community’s internet web site at www.rutlandnd.com, and take a look at the Rutland Facebook page while you’re at it, too. Remember to patronize your local Post Office during the Christmas season, and don’t forget to keep the pressure on the U. S. Postal Service and the North Dakota Congressional delegation to SAVE OUR POST OFFICE! Later.