by Bill Anderson
“All day we’ve faced the barren waste without a taste of water. Cool, clear water.” Sang The Sons Of The Pioneers years ago, and their words were about to become the 2021 theme song for Rutland and vicinity, until the morning of Tuesday, July 6, when the hot, dry barren waste was replaced by cool, clear water in the form of a 60 degree temperature reading and a misty, drizzly rain that was not a desert mirage but the real thing. It wasn’t a big rain, but, as The Assembled Wise Men observed, “It was better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick.” Roger Pearson reported .3 of an inch in his rain gauge on the east end of Gay Street, Mark Wyum reported .6 of an inch at his farmstead about 2 miles northeast of town, Jesse Brakke’s electronic gauge between Rutland & Cayuga recorded .46 of an inch of rainfall; DuWayne Baldwin reported .47 of an inch of precipitation south of Geneseo; and, Chuck Anderson’s gauge at the Anderson’s Weber Township farm 5½ miles southwest of town held .58 of an inch of blessings from Heaven; when the rain stopped. The relatively cool weather that is predicted for the rest of the week will allow the rain to soak in and do some good for the growing corn and soybean crops. According to Mr. Baldwin, the corn plants have perked up their ears and the beans are smiling.
Former Rutland community members Bill & Mary Woytassek paid a visit to their old friends in the old home town on Wednesday, June 30. The Woytasseks had been on a vacation trip to Granite Falls MN on the previous weekend, and decided to pay a visit to Rutland on their way back to their home at Detroit Lakes MN. They pulled in on the evening of Tuesday, June 29, parked their travel trailer in the Rutland RV Park, and then stopped in at the Rutland Seniors Center on Wednesday morning to catch up on the news and have coffee with the home folks.
Dave Kulzer, who has been visiting in Rutland since Monday, June 28, went out for lunch with the ROMEO (Retired Old Men Eating Out) group at Noon on Thursday, July 1. Regulars included: Dale McLaen; Mark Wyum; Bruce Peterson; and, Bill Anderson. Guests were: Jackie Peterson; Kathy Wyum; and, Dave Kulzer. This was the first outing for the ROMEO group since March of 2020, and they chose to check out the fare at the Geneseo Bar, which they found to be excellent. Charter members of the ROMEO group were: the late Earl Cramton; the late Richard Bradbury; Mark Wyum; and, Dale McLaen. The resumption of their weekly meeting is one more sign that life is returning to normal since the covid-19 pandemic has loosened its grip.
Speaking of covid-19, the pandemic may havelessened its ferocity since vaccines became available, but it is still a threat to public health. Statistics released last week indicate that 99.2% of those who have died of covid-19 during the month of June had not been vaccinated, while only 0.8% of those who died of the disease during the same period had received a vaccination. Sargent County Public Health District Administrator Brenda Peterson reports that this County has not had an active covid-19 case since June 24, and her team is working to keep it that way. Sargent County has not quite reached the goal of having 70% of adults vaccinated by the 4th of July, but is continuing to work toward that goal, too. To make an appointment to schedule a covid-19 vaccination, call: Sargent County Public Health at 724-3725; Forman Drug at 724-6222; or, Sanford Clinic at 742-3267.Paul Anderson reports from Spider Lake, near Nevis MN, that his grandson, Rhys Elfering, and granddaughter, Arlo Elfering, ages 2 and 4 months, respectively, were his guests at the lake on Friday, July 2. Rhys enjoyed piloting Grandpa’s pontoon, the SS Swamp Rat, around the lake, according to Paul. Rhys & Arlo were accompanied by Paul’s daughter & son-in-law, Katie and Josh Elfering. The Elferings make their home in Seattle WA, and had flown back to the Midwest to visit family and friends over the Independence Day holiday weekend. Paul also reports that the Nevis area received 2½ inches of rain on the morning of Tuesday, July 6. The rain was very welcome, as that area has missed out on even the small showers that have been keeping crops in Sargent County green and growing.
Chuck & Mary Beth Anderson were touring and camping in the Devils Lake ND Region last week, and Chuck reports that the drought of 2021 has dropped the level of that huge lake by 8 feet. Some roads, building sites and other features of landscape that have not been seen since the early 1990’s are now visible once again, and some are even out of the water. Old timers will remember that, prior to 1990, diverting water from the Missouri River to refill Devils Lake was seen as one of North Dakota’s top priorities. A few years later, establishing an outlet for the Lake before it went over its banks with disastrous consequences was one of the State’s top priorities. Now, it appears that Mother Nature has taken care of both problems, each in its turn. Chuck also reports that crops along US Highway 281 north of Jamestown appear to have been badly damaged by the drought, with some fields showing large bare spots where nothing at all is growing in the parched soil.
Aaron & Silvia Brooks of this community visited friends at Baudette MN over the Independence Day holiday weekend. Silvia reports that even northern Minnesota has been hot and dry this Summer.
The family of Kathleen Brakke wishes to thank all those who sent cards to Kathy on the occasion of her 80th Birthday last Monday, June 28. Kathy has been a resident at Mapleview Memory Care in Fargo since October of 2019. She enjoyed the cards and knew that you were all people she should know and remember.
Rutland City auditor Deb Banish reports that, due to the fact that Monday, July 5, was a holiday, the Rutland City Council meeting was rescheduled to 5:00 p.m. on Monday, July 12, at the Rutland Town Hall.
The 2nd Rutland Farmers’ Market of the 2021 season is scheduled to commence at 5:00 p.m. on Sunday, July 11, in the City Park adjacent to the Rutland Town Hall. Numerous vendors are expected to be on hand with fresh produce, home-made jellies & jams, and hand crafted articles for sale to the public. Come on out, mingle with friends and pick up some good stuff for home and kitchen. See you there.
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 check out the Rutland Facebook page while you’re at it, too. Don’t forget to patronize your local Post Office, and remember to keep the pressure on the U. S. Postal Service and the North Dakota Congressional delegation to SAVE OUR POST OFFICE! Later.