The Rooster Crows – June 10, 2022

By Bill Anderson

“There’s naught so rare as a day in June,” the late Earl W. Anderson used to say, and the first week of June 2022 proved the accuracy of his observation. Warm, sunny days, blue skies and gentle breezes replaced the cold, raging winds that were our constant companions throughout the Winter and Spring. Local farmers are still finding it difficult to locate fields that are dry enough to work in, but conditions are markedly improved from what they were in May. Mark Wyum reports that he has been “coltering” around sloughs in some fields in order to get them dried out enough to plant a few more acres. The piece of equipment that Mark is using for his task has shanks that are about a foot apart, and 2 colter blades attached per shank. Old timers remember a colter as a straight bladed disc that ran ahead of a plowshare, opening the ground to make it easier to keep the plow in the ground. Well, nobody plows any more, but the colter still has a use. The implement Mark is using is 41 feet wide and can cover a lot of territory when the need arises, as it has this Spring.

Despite some encouraging news about a month ago, the Post Office situation in Rutland has returned to the same old same old of no information; no action; no service; and no Post Office. Rodney Erickson reports that, as of Thursday, June 2, he has heard nothing further from the Postal Service office in Colorado that had previously informed him that it would be 1 or 2 months until they could get someone to Rutland to take a look at available facilities. One hundred sixty years ago, the Pony Express could deliver the U.S. Mail across the trackless wilderness from St. Joseph MO to San Francisco CA in 10 days. Of course, those horses are a lot older now, and may have slowed down some. Perhaps the Postal Service officials involved could hook a ride from Colorado to North Dakota on a Coors beer truck. Those trucks seem to be able to make the trip in a couple of days. The drivers must be properly motivated.

On the brighter side, the Waloch-Johnson Insurance Agency has informed this writer that Ms. Michelle Sagvold has been hired to run the agency’s Rutland office. Ms. Sagvold is still in the process of training and getting licensed, and a firm starting date for her take over of the Rutland office has not yet been set. Waloch-Johnson’s many clients in the Rutland community are looking forward to having a full-time agent in the local office once again.

Correction: The wedding of Miss Hailey Hamilton and Mr. Evan Wyum was on Friday, May 27, not on Saturday, May 28, as was reported in The Rooster Crows last week. Apologies for the error are extended to the bride & groom. Despite the incorrect information that appeared in this column last week, Hailey & Evan are definitely officially married and living happily ever after at their home in Fargo.

Speaking of living happily ever after, City Auditor Debbie Banish has announced that Miss Tasha Heiken and Mr. Derek Steele have reserved the Rutland Town Hall for a wedding reception on the weekend of June 24 thru 26. The Rutland community welcomes the happy couple and extends best wishes to them for a beautiful wedding and a long and happy life together. 

It was like a snapshot of a moment in time. As the Assembled Wise Men discussed the issues of the day at their round table in the Rutland Seniors’ Center on the morning of Saturday, June 4, one of the occasionally “grumpy old men” looked out, through the west facing window, and noticed a young man and a young woman standing next to a car that was parked alongside Rutland Oil Co.’s fuel pumps across the street. The young man was tall and handsome. The young woman was slender and very pretty. No one at the Seniors’ Center knew who they were. Both had long, dark hair. The young man had his hand on the young woman’s shoulder, and they appeared to be engaged in earnest conversation. Suddenly they were in each other’s arms, locked in an intense embrace that was accompanied by a fiercely passionate kiss. Then the guy, the girl and the car were gone, vanished as if they had never been there at all, leaving behind a lighter, brighter, warmer day with the scent of lilacs in the air. “Did you see that?” asked one of the Wise Men. If it had been a hallucination, they had all seen the same one. And some folks say that nothing interesting or exciting ever happens in a small town. Sometimes you just have to smile, even if you’d just rather be a grumpy old man.

The T-Ball and Pony League baseball games that had been scheduled to be played at Lou Sanderson Field in Rutland on Wednesday, June 1, were postponed due to wet conditions, both on the playing field and in the parking lot. Information has been received that the games have been rescheduled to Thursday, June 23, when conditions on the diamond are likely to be more favorable. 

The Rutland Roosters Men’s Slowpitch Softball team ran into a hard-hitting team from Lidgerwood at the Roosters’ home opener on Tuesday, June 7. The Lidgerwood team came out on top of a 16 to 13 tussle in the first game of the evening’s double-header and won game #2 in 5 innings by the 15-run rule, dominating the contest by piling up 20 runs to the Roosters’ 5. Despite the disappointing outcomes on the playing field, it was a wonderful evening to be at the ballpark, and head chef Mac Pherson did a great job with the hot dogs, popcorn, soft drinks and other treats at the concession stand. The Roosters’ next home game is scheduled to commence at 6:45 p.m. on Flag Day, Tuesday, June 14, at Lou Sanderson Field. So, come on out to the ballpark, and root, root, root for the home team!

Norbert & Beverly Kulzer spent from Saturday, June 4, to Monday, June 6, in school. Several of the descendants of the late Myrtle (Aus) Kulzer and the late Roman Kulzer had a reunion at The Schoolhouse in Nome ND over the weekend. Myrtle Aus and her 2 full brothers, Noble and Orville, were born at Nome, where their parents, Oscar & Minnie Aus, farmed. In the early 1920’s, when Myrtle was still a little girl, her father died in a car accident. The family struggled to survive. Mrs. Aus later met and married John Jenson, a railroad man, and the Great Northern Railway assigned him to a job at Rutland, then a small rail center. Norbert reports that the accommodations at The Schoolhouse in Nome were excellent. In addition to Norbert & Beverly, other family members attending the reunion were: Cathy (Kulzer) Kriegelstein and her son & daughter-in-law, Trevor & Jackie Kriegelstein of Appleton WI; and Merrill & Karen (Kulzer) Buisker of Aberdeen SD. According to Norbert, the sleeping accommodations at the Nome school were superior to those he remembers from his student days at Rutland High School.

Dawn Mahrer and Wendy Jacobson accompanied Pastor Julie Johnson to the annual conference of the Eastern North Dakota Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA on Friday, Saturday & Sunday, June 3, 4 & 5). Mrs. Mahrer and Mrs. Jacobson were the delegates representing Nordland Lutheran Church of Rutland at the conference. Pastor Johnson reports that the agenda and activities were interesting and inspiring.

Kathy Wyum reports that Nordland Lutheran Church in Rutland has scheduled Vacation Bible School for students from kindergarten through 6th Grade for Tuesday through Thursday, July 12 through 14. Rutland native Val Pherson, now a seminary student preparing for the ministry, will be heading up the faculty. Classes are scheduled from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. each day. Family members and the public are invited to attend the Program at 2:00 p.m. on Thursday, July 14. According to Mrs. Wyum, 29 students were already registered as of Tuesday, June 7, and more are welcome. For additional information, contact Kathy Wyum at 701-680-0436.

The Rutland City Council’s June meeting convened at 5:00 p.m. on Monday, June 6, at the Rutland Town Hall with Mayor Mike Mahrer; Auditor Debbie Banish; and Council members Rodney Erickson; Delores Lysne; and Lori McLaen; present. Council member Colton Corry was absent. Also present at the meeting were: Sargent County Water Resource District Engineer Nathan Trosen of Moore Engineering, Fargo; and Rutland resident Bill Anderson. Engineer Trosen reviewed 3 possible options for converting Drain #8, the drain that carries water from Rutland south to the Wild Rice River, from an open ditch to a covered pipe system. The options reviewed included: a 12” buried pipe; a 24” buried pipe; and an 8” covered pipe with a force pump. The 12” pipe option would be designed to handle a 10-year high water event. Bill Anderson inquired about the effectiveness of the drain in the event of multiple 500-year high water events, such as occurred in 2009, 2010 & 2011. Of the 3 options, the cost estimate for the 12” option was the lowest, and the cost estimate for the force pump with the 8” pipe was the highest. The availability of funding for any project was discussed. According to Mr. Trosen, the Drain #8 fund is now near its limit of a little more than $100,000, and other funding might be available from the State Water Commission and from the Sargent County Highway Department. No decisions were made at Monday’s meeting. The Council and the County Water Resource Board will continue to discuss the matter.

Bids were opened on several items of excess property, including port-a-potties; fuel tank; and other miscellaneous items. The high bids for those items for which bids had been received were accepted. Those items for which no bids were received will be disposed of as quickly as possible. After reviewing the City’s financial reports, the Council authorized the payment of bills submitted and the meeting was adjourned at 5:50 p.m. The next meeting of the Rutland City Council is scheduled for 5:00 p.m. on Monday, July 11, at the Rutland Town Hall. All meetings of the Rutland are open to the public, and Rutland residents are invited to attend and observe their city’s government in action.

Meanwhile, on the national scene, the discussion over what to do to stop angry young men with assault weapons from killing anyone and everyone in their paths is enough to make you sick. It is becoming apparent that the lawmakers of one political party don’t intend to do anything. All they want to do is stall until the attention span of the American electorate moves on to something else. Once again, nothing will be done. Nothing will even be tried. Until the American people figure out that doing the same thing over and over, sending these same people back to the Congress and to State Legislatures will never get them a different result, no action will be taken, and the slaughter will continue.  We, the people, have the power to change the trajectory of our society, to end this reign of mayhem and murder, but we have to summon the will and the common sense to do it. We can put in place common sense protections for school kids, shoppers and worshippers without infringing on anyone’s 2nd Amendment rights, but we have to consider facts, not fiction, realistic proposals not “pie in the sky” claptrap, or the illusion of action that goes nowhere and accomplishes nothing. It’s time for us, the people, to quit buying the baloney and BS, and to start using our heads for something besides holding our ears apart. Everybody isn’t going to agree on everything, but can we at least agree that it’s a good thing to keep angry, hate filled individuals from slaughtering our children? If we can at least agree on that, it’s only a short step to an agreement on a proposal that can actually accomplish what we want. But first, we have to be willing to agree, and second, we have to be willing to elect State & Federal legislators who are willing to agree with each other on common sense proposals.

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, and take a look at 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.

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