By Bill Anderson
The 4 day stretch from Friday, June 17, to Monday, June 20, was sizzling hot, with the mercury hitting the upper 90’s on Friday and Monday, and getting over the 100 mark on Saturday & Sunday. You could have fried an egg on the sidewalk, if it wasn’t for the fact that eggs now cost about $9.00 a dozen, and are too expensive to fry on the concrete. . As a bonus, Mother Nature did throw in some 50 mph wind just to keep things interesting. The ample supply of soil moisture appeared to protect growing crops from damage, so far, but the thunderstorm that passed through on Monday evening was welcome. It dropped some more precipitation that alleviated fears of a permanent drought. Roger Pearson reported .3 of an inch in his rain gauge, and both Norbert Kulzer and Larry Arneson reported that their gauges showed .4 of an inch.
Most farmers in the Rutland area completed their planting operations by the June 10 crop insurance deadline for coverage on soybeans. The crop insurance deadline for corn and wheat was back on May 31. It is estimated that approximately 20% of the normal crop acres were prevented from being planted due to this past spring’s excessive moisture, although, for some, the acres prevented from being planted was as high as 40% of normal. Some of those acres were under water, and some were just too soft & muddy to operate machinery on, unless you wanted to leave it there as a permanent landmark. According to Cam Gulleson, the acres left idle due to excess moisture this spring will likely be seeded to cover crops in the next few weeks. The cover crops will be able to be grazed or cut for hay.
According to Siri, the little know it all who lives in the I-Phone, the Summer Solstice arrived at 4:41 a.m. CDT on Tuesday, June 21, so the longest day and shortest night are now behind us. It’s all downhill from here. The next thing we know, it will be 20 below, the wind will be howling and the Christmas lights will be up. At least there are a few things out here on the prairie that are regular and predictable. It is interesting to note that, according to Siri, the Sun operates on Daylight Saving Time during the Spring & Summer months. Will wonders never cease?
Although there aren’t many cattlemen left around here, those who remain in the business have large herds and had to be concerned about the effect of the recent heat wave on their livestock. The Gulleson Farm & Ranch currently owns approximately 700 head of cows with calves at side in addition to fat cattle and feeders. According to Cam Gulleson, the Gulleson brothers had their water tanks running over as well as “misting” areas in which the cattle could cool off when the heat became dangerous.
Chuck Sundlie returned to Rutland on Monday, June 13, at the conclusion of a 9 day trip to visit his sister and brother-in-law, Debbie & James Fust, at their home in Billings Mt. Chuck reports that they enjoyed a great deal of golfing during this trip. Chuck usually likes to ride his Harley-Davidson motorcycle on vacation trips to Montana, but this year he drove a nearly new mini-van lent to him by his friends, Doug & Cher Spieker of this community. He reports that road and weather conditions were excellent throughout his trip.
Jesse Brakke, Scott Haan and Bill Anderson were in Bismarck on Saturday & Sunday, June 18 & 19. Paul Anderson also drove over from his Spider Lake cottage near Nevis MN. The 4 local men attended the Professional Bull Riders event at the Bismarck Civic Center, and visited with Paul & Bill’s niece, Kelly Hawkinson, Secretary for the PBR event. Kelly now makes her home near Lewiston MT. Each year, Chad Berger, supplier of the bulls used in the event, honors a North Dakota veteran during the Bismarck PBR program. Unknown to Bill, a Vietnam veteran, Kelly had nominated him to be this year’s honoree. Kelly had arranged for Jesse, Scott, Paul & Bill to receive the VIP treatment at the Bismarck Civic Center before and during the event. About halfway through the event, Mr. Berger, Bill and several others were escorted into the center of the arena for the presentation. It was at this time that Bill figured out that something was up. The announcer read a summary of Bill’s life and military service in the USMC during the Vietnam War, and Mr. Berger presented him with a red, white & blue patriotic quilt and a custom engraved Henry “Golden Boy” .22 caliber lever action rifle.
After the presentation, Kelly and Chad Berger went back to work, while the 4 local men went back to their seats in the stands. When the competition was over, North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum, who had carried the American Flag into the arena on horseback at the commencement of the event, invited Kelly and her guests for a conversation with him and his wife, Catherine. Mrs. Burgum is a granddaughter of the late Mr. & Mrs. Elwood Nelson of Milnor. In the past she had been employed by the Bobcat Company, and she knew Paul Anderson from that time. Also in the group were: former PBR National Champion Cody Lambert; 6’ 7” ND Highway Patrolman Ben Hickson, the Governor’s bodyguard and also a Marine veteran of the conflicts in Afghanistan & Iraq; and, Bob Miller, “just a regular guy” from Bismarck. All in all, it was a very nice conversation. The Governor is also a friend and fraternity brother of Joe Breker of this community, and he sent greetings to his old friend, Joe. Said Bill, “I never knew that Kelly could be so secretive, or that the rest of the gang could keep things quiet that long. It was a very nice surprise, though.”
Speaking of surprises, Kelly Hawkinson reported that she left Bismarck in a 100 degree heat wave on Sunday, June 19, and arrived back at her home near Lewiston MT several hours later to be greeted by rain and a seemingly arctic 51 degrees above Zero. Eastern Montana had suffered from a severe drought in 2019, 2020 & 2021, so the snow, rain and cool weather of 2022 have been more than welcome. Kelly reports that the countryside is green & growing from the Red River of the North to the top of the Rocky Mountains.
Scott Haan, Jesse Brakke and Bill Anderson departed Bismarck on Sunday, June 19, heading south rather than east. Scott’s mother, Mary Ann Haan, lives on the family farm near Hague, just a mile north of the South Dakota State Line, and the trio stopped for a visit with Mary Ann Haan at about Noon. They also stopped at the town of Hague, and visited the large Roman Catholic Church there. The church seats more than 700, is beautifully decorated and is on the National Registry of Historic Buildings. The acoustics inside the church are nearly perfect, and a person speaking in a normal voice in one corner can be heard in the opposite corner with no problem.
Rutland native Vincent Young arrived back in Rutland on Thursday, June 16. He is currently residing at the Prindiville family’s farmstead on the south side of town. Vince has acquired a new, slate black Mercedes since his last visit to Rutland back in 2019. Unfortunately, he bagged a deer with it on his way up here, and it is now in need of some restorative dental work to bring back its smile.
The Knife River Construction Co. of St. Cloud MN completed the 2 miles of paving work on County Road #10 from ND Highway #11 through Rutland to the intersection with County Road #3 on Thursday, June 16. A 2” lift of asphalt paving was also applied to County Road #3 from the intersection with County Drain #8 on the west side of town to the east end of The Rutland Cemetery on the east side of town. According to County Highway Engineer Damon Devillers of Interstate Engineering of Wahpeton, the seal coat will not be applied this year, but the center striping, side striping and other road markings will be completed in the next few weeks.
The on-line auction of The Lariat Bar building, equipment and furniture opened on the Steffes Auction Service’s internet web site at steffesgroup.com on Thursday, June 16, and the bidding will close on Thursday, June 23. An opening bid of $75,000.00 was required, a small price to pay for a license to print money. The Lariat has been closed since Pete & Michelle Denault terminated their lease of the premises back on March 5.
Lifelong Rutland community member Doris (Nundahl) Hoistad was the guest of honor at a 90th Birthday Party at the Rutland Senior Citizens’ Center on Saturday, June 18. Doris grew up on the Nundahl farm at Perry, 4 miles north of Rutland. Her parents were the late Harry & Hilda (Anderson) Nundahl, and her husband was the late Quentin Hoistad. Quentin & Doris made their home on the farm 1½ mile west of Rutland until they retired and moved to an apartment in Rutland about 10 years ago. Doris has been a resident at Four Seasons Healthcare in Forman for the past 3 years. The party was organized by Doris’ children: Cheryl & Mike Zirnhelt; Harris & Carol Hoistad; and, Wayne & – Hoistad. Also present at the party were Doris’ siblings: Dean & Carol Nundahl; Harlan & Gloria Nundahl; and, Judy & Jim Kleingarn. During the past 90 years, Doris has: attended country school in Ransom Township; attended Forman High School, graduating in 1948 at age 16; been a farm wife & mother; has marketed farm fresh eggs in the community; has served as an elementary school teacher for Cayuga, Rutland & Sargent Central; un a muskrat trap line; served as Rutland’s Uff-Da Day Chairperson; been a lifelong active member of Nordland Lutheran Church in Rutland; and, served as Rutland City Auditor. The Rutland community congratulates Doris on attaining this milestone, wishes her a Happy Birthday, and extends best wishes for many more to come.
Rutland City Auditor Debbie Banish recently sent out information concerning the City’s water system. Each year the City of Rutland is required to provide a “Consumer Confidence Report” (CCR) informing the public of the source of the City’s drinking water and what’s in it. The report will be available by July 1 of each year. It can be electronically downloaded from https//rutlandnd.com/ccr1, or, it can be read on the City’s internet web site at https//www.rutlandnd.com/water-quality-report. A paper copy of the report may be obtained from City Auditor Debbie Banish by calling the City office at (701)724-3081. Copies of the report will also be available at the Rutland City Hall and at the Rutland Senior Citizens’ Center. Occasionally, a shot of whiskey may be found in a glass of Rutland’s drinking water, but that ingredient is not supplied by the City.
Forman native Bill Windsor visited his old stomping grounds in Rutland on the afternoon of Monday, June 20. Bill is the eldest son of the late Rollie & Lee Windsor, who operated Windsors’ Country Kitchen restaurant On Forman’s Main Street during the middle decades of the 20th Century. Windsors’ Country Kitchen was next door to Kretchman’s Bar, and the 2 businesses had a symbiotic relationship that worked well for both back in the days when State law forbade the serving of food in bars. Bill graduated from Forman High in the mid-50’s, and was good friends with a couple of the Christensen boys from Rutland, Donald & Charles. He currently makes his home in Sun City West AZ.
Bill Windsor’s visit prompted a reminiscence of days past from Norbert Kulzer. Back in the 1950’s, when Norbert and his brother, Kurt, were serious students at Rutland High, their Dad, Romey, owned the propane gas business in Rutland. Romey supplied propane to many customers throughout Sargent County, including to Windsors’ Country Kitchen in Forman. One cold night, Romey called home, rousted Norbert & Kurt out of bed, and told them to bring the propane truck over to Forman to resupply the restaurant, as customers, including Romey, Norbert’s Uncle Norbert and Bud Hoflen, wanted their steaks. The boys got the truck going, drove to Forman through the snowdrifts on old Highway #11, and got the propane tank filled. When they went into Windsors’ to deliver the bill, they discovered that there was a fist fight in progress, with Romey, Norbert & Bud taking on 3 guys from Forman, at least one of them with the last name of Flesness. Norbert suspects that alcohol may have been involved. “When they got into the whiskey, they wanted to fight,” he said. Thinking that Kurt & Norbert were reinforcements, one of the combatants took a swing at the younger Norbert. He ducked, but Kurt didn’t see it coming. The blow struck Kurt square on the forehead, knocking him to the floor. Norbert picked up Kurt and dragged him back to the truck. When he and Kurt got back to Rutland, they parked the truck behind the hardware store, next door to the Rutland Café, then operated by Bernie & Shirley Mahrer. Shirley looked out, saw Kurt bleeding from the gash on his forehead, and made the boys come in to get patched up. Bernie, a nephew of Romey & Norbert, and a first cousin of Kurt and Norbert, thoroughly enjoyed the story. Norbert said that he and Kurt had to come back to Windsors a few days later to deliver the bill and collect for the propane. And some folks say that nothing exciting ever happens in a small town.
Meanwhile, on the national scene, members of the House Select Committee investigating the January 6, 2021, attack on the U. S. Capitol don’t even have to make any accusations. All they have to do is let former President Trump’s cronies talk, and they dig their own graves. Right now, things look bleak for the former President, but don’t count him out, yet. Like the fictional Count Dracula, he’ll keep coming back, until he’s buried with an oaken stake through his heart, if he has one. Until then, though, it’s kind of fun to watch his booze soaked disbarred lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, sweat.
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. 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.