The Rooster Crows – Oct. 15, 2021

By Bill Anderson

Accompanied by booming thunder and driving rain, Autumn charged in on a chariot of rampaging wind and blazing lightning during the early evening hours of Saturday, October 9. Summer, it seemed, had overstayed her welcome, and had to be driven out with a display of raw power. Although the wind was ferocious, and the area was subject to a tornado warning for part of the evening, Sunday morning’s inspection revealed little damage in the Rutland community. In the rain department, Norbert Kulzer’s rain gauge at 415 Gay Street recorded 1.75”; Roger Pearson’s, right next door, showed 1.4”; Chuck Anderson’s gauge at his Weber Township farm home showed 1.2”; Dennis McLaen’s gauge at the McLaen farm northwest of Town, showed 1.5”; Jim Levery’s gauge on the north side of ND Highway #11, 3½ miles east of the Rutland corner, held 2”; and, Doug Spieker stated that his gauge at the old Clarence & Adeline Breker farmstead in Tewaukon Township contained 2” after the storm had passed. The rain brought harvest activities to a halt, but only briefly. The soil, still thirsty after last Summer’s drought and heat, soaked the moisture up quickly. Dennis McLaen reported that combines and trucks were rolling through corn fields by Monday afternoon. According to Denny Pherson, the topsoil and subsoil moisture are now nearly reunited, a good sign for next Spring. More rain was arriving on the morning of Wednesday, October 13, but no totals were available as of this writing as the rain was still coming down. Tune in next week for more exciting weather news.

Claire Brakke & Alex Markovic of Madison WI; Alex’s parents, Mike & Lisa Markovic of Chicago IL; Alex’s brother, Nick Markovic of Glen Ellyn IL; and, a Markovic family friend, Javier Soltelo of Aurora IL; were Weekend guests at the Jesse Brakke home in Ransom Township from Thursday, October 7 to Monday, October 11. This was Mike & Lisa’s first visit to North Dakota. Alex, Nick & Javier took advantage of the North Dakota Pheasant season opener to hunt the wily ringneck, with some success, on Saturday & Sunday. Mike & Lisa headed back to Chicago, via Minneapolis, on Sunday afternoon, and the remainder of Jesse’s visitors headed for their respective homes about Noon on Monday.

This community was saddened last Friday when it was learned that longtime Rutland resident, businesswoman and community stalwart, Lois Nelson, had passed away on the evening of Thursday, October 7. Lois was a resident of Four Seasons Healthcare Center in Forman at the time of her death. She had attained the age of 95 years, 7 months and 22 days. Lois Maxine Colby was born in Gwinner ND on February 15, 1926, the second of the 7 children of Rollo and Ella (Hanson) Colby. She grew up on the Colby’s family farm in Dunbar Township, and attended Elementary School in the Townships 1 room country schools. On November 10, 1944, she was united in marriage with Ralph Nelson of Rutland Township. They farmed in the Rutland area until 1953, when they took over management of the Producers-Consumers Cooperative Cream Station in Rutland, and moved to town. On December 24, 1962, Lois, Ralph and family, acquired the Rutland Café, and operated it until they retired and sold the business on December 24, 1998. During the 36 years that they owned and operated the Café, they also lived in it, making their home in the rooms on the east end of the Café building. To start with, the Café was open from 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. every day, except for Saturdays and dance nights, when it was open until the last customer left, whenever that might be, and on Sundays, when it was open from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Lois & Ralph served home cooked meals, and were noted for their hamburgers which generally had a beef patty in them that was about an inch larger in diameter than the bun in which it was served. Throughout the 60’s, a big cheeseburger with an order of fries and a hand-made malted milk, made with real milk and real ice cream, could be purchased at the Rutland Café for 75 cents. With the burger on one side, the malt on the other, and the fries in the center, that was a well-balanced meal! Lois was noted for her baking, particularly the cakes, cookies and bars, especially the date bars, she prepared for the Café’s customers. For many years she baked most of the homemade bread served with Rutland’s Uff-Da Day dinner at the Town Hall. She was an active member of Nordland Lutheran Church, and served as president of the Ladies Aid, as a Sunday School teacher and as a member of the Church Council. Back in the 1950’s, when her boys were young, she served as a Cub Scout Den Mother. Lois is survived by: two sons, Edward Nelson of Crookston MN; and, Richard Nelson of Valley City ND; one daughter, Barbara Rick of Fergus Falls MN; by 8 grandchildren; by 8 great-grandchildren; and, by numerous nieces, nephews and friends. She was preceded in death by her husband, Ralph, in January of 2009; by her parents; by 3 brothers: Don; Roger; and, Richard; and, by 3 sisters: Betty Nelson; Audrey Johnson; and, Shirley Dahl. The funeral for Lois Nelson will be at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, October 16, at Nordland Lutheran Church in Rutland, with Pastor Julie Johnson officiating. Interment will be in the Rutland Cemetery. The Price Funeral Chapel of Britton and Forman is in charge of arrangements. Condolences may be sent to the family in care of Barbara Rick, 1210 Stony Brook Rd, Fergus Falls MN 56537. The Rutland community extends condolences to the family and friends of Lois Nelson, a mother, grandmother and great-grandmother who worked hard, fed thousands and made life better for all she met.

The October meeting of the Rutland Community Club, originally set for Monday, October 11, has been rescheduled for 5:00 p.m. on Wednesday, October 20, at the Rutland Town Hall, according to Community Club President Katie McLaen. At that time, Club officers expect to be ready to present a report on Uff-Da Day XXXVI, held on Sunday, October 3, and to begin preparing for Uff-Da Day XXXVII on the First Sunday in October, 2022. Also expected to be discussed are: the Rutland Post Office situation; Santa Claus Day 2021; Fun Night; and, the Annual Community Play.

The Rutland Post Office is still closed as of Wednesday, October 13. The original “few days” is now turning into a “few weeks,” and a “few months” won’t be far behind. It has been learned that the U. S. Postal Service has recently pulled the same sudden, no public notice closure routine at several other small town Post Offices in North Dakota, including the Offices in Parshall ND and Alexander ND. The closures have supposedly been due to “health and safety concerns,” although no specific concerns have been identified. Patrons of the Rutland Post Office are urged to write to North Dakota’s Congressional delegation: Senator John Hoeven; Senator Kevin Cramer; and, Congressman Kelly Armstrong; to request their assistance in restoring a Post Office facility to the Rutland community. Congress has oversight over the Postal Service, and the establishment and operation of a postal system is one of the responsibilities specifically assigned to the U. S. Congress in Article I of the U. S. Constitution. The Postal Service is in need of a shakeup, as the course it is now on, charging more for fewer hours, slower delivery and less service, is not a recipe for success. Firing the current Postmaster General, and replacing the current Board of Directors, would be a good start, so let’s get started!

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, 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.

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