The Rooster Crows – Dec. 2, 2022

By Bill Anderson

The four day Veterans Day weekend, from November 10th through the 13th, gave us rain, cold, ice, snow and slush, bringing down power lines, wrecking trees, damaging buildings and making traffic of any kind, pedestrian or vehicular, hazardous. The four day Thanksgiving weekend gave us sunshine, temperatures into the upper 40’s, and altogether pleasant conditions that raised spirits, melted snow, removed ice, and greatly improved conditions for travel and other activities. The Almighty giveth and the Almighty taketh away, in this case that turned out to be a mighty good deal. By Wednesday, November 30, conditions were back to winter, with a temperature of 9 above and a 25 mph northwest wind, but at least the ice and snow were gone, for a little while, anyway. Sometimes old guys wear their long woolies; Sometimes they wear the ones filled with down; sometimes they’re all in the laundry; then those old guys are the talk of the town.

A few years ago, the City of Rutland installed a speed limit sign with a flashing light on it along County Road #10/First Street, on the south side of town, in an attempt to slow down the traffic entering Rutland from the south. The sign is now missing, as is its flashing light. Anyone with information about the present location of the missing sign is asked to contact the City of Rutland at 724-3081. Traffic signs are expensive, and they are installed for the protection of the public. Some folks think that it is humorous to remove or deface traffic signs. Several years ago, someone thought that it would be fun to steal a STOP sign from the intersection of County Road #14 and ND Highway #11 at Geneseo. Shortly after the sign had been removed, a person unfamiliar with the area drove through Geneseo from the south and, as there was no sign, did not stop at the intersection. The driver’s vehicle was struck by a tractor-trailer rig in the center of the intersection. The driver was killed and her car was demolished. This was not humorous to any of the parties involved. If you have any information about Rutland’s missing speed limit sign, please see to it that the sign is returned so no one will have to carry a tragedy on their conscience for the rest of their life.

Paul Anderson travelled on Delta Airlines to Phoenix AZ on Tuesday, November 22, to spend the Thanksgiving holiday with his Mother-In-Law, Etha Quinlan of Sun City West, his daughter, Betsy, from Las Vegas NV, and his daughter, Katy, and her family from Seattle WA. Present at Etha’s home in Sun City for Thanksgiving Dinner were: Etha Quinlan; Paul Anderson; Betsy Anderson; Josh & Katy Elfering; Rhys Elfering; and, Arlo Elfering. Betsy, Josh, Katy and the kids all headed for home on Friday, November 25, and Paul arrived back in Fargo on the11:00 p.m. flight from Minneapolis on Sunday, November27.

Continue reading “The Rooster Crows – Dec. 2, 2022”

The Rooster Crows – Nov. 25, 2022

By Bill Anderson

To the list of things to be thankful for on this Thanksgiving weekend, add sunshine and temperatures above the freezing mark. After putting up with snow covered ice for 2 weeks, we are ready to be done with Winter and all of its 4 letter gifts: cold; wind; snow; and, a 3 letter trinket, ice. Even though the first day of Winter is still a month in the future, it will be a relief to have the Sun take away its opening salvo. Sunshine and high temperatures in the mid to upper 30’s pushing to the end of November is certainly a blessing worthy of a sincere “Thank You!” to the one providing those conditions.

Work on The Lariat Bar, getting it ready for opening day, is progressing at a steady pace according to Patty Woytassek, a member of the Board of Directors, and the point contact person between the Board and Manager Sue Kaehler. Patty reports that some unexpected glitches have delayed the bar’s projected opening from December 1 to December 8. The Lariat’s work force of bartenders, waiters & waitresses, cooks and helpers has, for the most part, been hired, and is chomping at the bit to start meeting, greeting and serving customers. To the list of those who were workers at The Lariat Bar last week, the names of Janice Christensen, Denny Pherson, Jerry Woytassek, Nick McLaen, Dennis McLaen, Trent Nelson, Mike Nadler, Calvin Jacobson and Zach Jacobson have to be added. Janice, who had the building constructed back in 2009, was providing technical advice to those making modifications and connecting essential equipment; Denny was the “Go-Fer,” running for parts, supplies and, when necessary, lunch; Jerry & Nick were toting & hauling; Dennis delivered a new safe, although it is not clear whether or not he stocked its shelves; Calvin & Zach were servicing the cooler behind the bar; Trent was installing a new service window between the main barroom and the back room; and, Mike had been called in to move the electric line that was discovered to be in the center of the new service window. Patty also reports that a new, commercial, dishwasher has been acquired from the Brenco Co. of Fargo. Brenco will also be coming in to power scrub the floors and apply sealant prior to Opening Day. According to Patty, the Lariat has been an exciting place for the past few weeks, with vendors, suppliers, workers, and sidewalk supervisors coming and going. She says that, as much as possible, supplies will be obtained locally. Arrangements are being made to obtain most groceries through Central Grocery of Forman; potatoes will be supplied by Heimbuch Potato Farm of Cogswell; and, some meats, including Mark Wyum’s favorite hot dogs, will be acquired from Fairmount Meat Locker of Fairmount. Keep your eyes & ears open for any changes in the Opening Day schedule, but Sue & Patty are pretty confident that December 8th will be the date.

Continue reading “The Rooster Crows – Nov. 25, 2022”

The Rooster Crows – Nov. 18, 2022

By Bill Anderson

The winter storm that began on the evening of Wednesday, November 9, and continued through Thursday & Friday, November 10 & 11, covered Rutland and vicinity with an inch thick coating of solid ice, and left a trail of broken branches, snapped power poles and downed lines in its wake. Otter Tail Power’s service in Rutland had only a few, brief interruptions of a couple of minutes or less, but downed power lines on the Dakota Valley (formerly RSR) Rural Electric Co-op’s system left several hundred farm and rural customers in Sargent, Ransom, Dickey & Lamoure Counties without electric power for a day, or more. Several dozen linemen from surrounding RECs came in to assist Dakota Valley meet the emergency and get its lines back in service.

Most rain gauges have been taken in for the season, but a few of the sophisticated all-weather electronic gauges were still in operation during the storm. Chuck Anderson reports that the electronic gauge at his Weber Township farm had filled up with ice, so he had to bring it in to let it thaw out before it would give him a reading. He states that once the ice had melted the gauge held .94 inch of liquid water. An unconfirmed report of .68 inch of precipitation was received from Sargent County’s Hub City, our neighboring community of Forman.

Jim & Mary Ann Levery called their Ransom Township neighbors, Mike & Jill Anderson, on the evening of Wednesday, November 9, to check on the weather. Mike gave Jim the bad news, and then Jim informed Mike that he & Mary Ann were at the Grand Ol’ Opry in Nashville TN, attending the annual Country Music Awards ceremony. They had great seats, Jim reported, as far back and as high up as you can get. The acoustics were very good, though, and they could hear the music just fine. Anyone who has heard Jim sing and play the guitar during Rutland’s Uff-Da Day might have thought that Jim was in Nashville to receive an award, but he said, “Not this year.” The Leverys had departed for Nashville on Sunday, November 6, and met up with a tour bus that took them to Nashville for a week of touring the sites and enjoying country music. One of the places they visited was the Johnny Cash Museum which contained many artifacts from that Star’s career. Jim said that the weather in Nashville was very pleasant during most of their visit, with the temperature in the 70’s most of the time. The temperature began to drop and the rain began to fall right after they departed Nashville, headed for home. They arrived home on Sunday, November 13, and report a very good time in the Capitol City of Country Music. 

Continue reading “The Rooster Crows – Nov. 18, 2022”

The Rooster Crows – Nov. 11, 2022

By Bill Anderson

“Don’t know why … there’s no sun up in the sky … stormy weather…” moaned the late blues singer Lena Horn as she mourned the loss of a faithless lover in her classic theme song. Her sentiments were echoed by Republicans on the morning of Wednesday, November 9, as they awoke to find that their predicted Red Tidal Wave had not materialized as the votes had been counted the night before. There was not even a Red Wave, as many Democrats had feared, although the national results might be described as a Red Ripple. As of Wednesday morning, control of the U. S. Congress was still in doubt, although it looked as if the GOP might eke out a bare majority of a few votes in the House of Representatives. The Senate had 48 Democrats, 47 Republicans and 5 contests still too close to call. The election results indicate a fairly decisive rejection of Trump and Trumpism by America’s voters and may indicate that the flood of political poison unleashed on America’s body politic by Trump’s brand of politics may finally be receding. In North Dakota, the GOP, fueled by a flood of oil money, has retained control of State government by a substantial margin. The initiated measure that would have legalized the recreational use of marijuana in the State appears to have gone up in smoke, and the voters approved an initiated measure limiting State Legislators and the State’s Governor to two consecutive 4 year terms. Well, Election 2022 is over, and Election 2024 has begun. This year neither the red wave nor the blue wall controlled the result. Next time, who knows? 

The first winter storm of the season has been predicted to hit North Dakota, South Dakota & Minnesota on Thursday and Friday, November 10 & 11, threatening to disrupt activities and programs honoring America’s veterans on November 10 and on Veterans Day, November 11. According to Kaia Mahrer, a teacher at Sargent Central, if Thursday’s predicted blizzard causes the scheduled November 10 program at the Sargent Central Activities Center to be postponed, the program will be rescheduled to 2:00 p.m. on Monday, November 14. Keep your eyes & ears open for schedule changes.

The Rutland City Council met at 5:00 p.m. on Monday, November 7, in the Rutland Town Hall with Mayor Mike Mahrer; Auditor Deb Banish; and Council members Bill Anderson; Rodney Erickson; Delores Lysne; and Lori McLaen; present. Also present was City Maintenance employee, Scott Haan. The Council and Mr. Haan discussed a minimum hours guarantee per pay period for Mr. Haan’s position, and reimbursement of Mr. Haan for use of his personal vehicles while performing city work. The Council approved payment of a minimum of 50 hours per bimonthly pay period for City employee Scott Haan; and, authorized a payment of $50.00 per month to Mr. Haan for the use of his personal vehicles for City work. The Council also complimented Mr. Haan on the excellent work that he has been doing for the city. The Council discussed the State of North Dakota’s water operator certification requirement and approved the City entering into a contract with Southeast Water Users to maintain an appropriate valid operator certificate for the City of Rutland’s municipal water system. The Council authorized the purchase of the tax forfeited property in Rutland described as Lots 1 & 2, Block 5 of the Original Townsite of Harvard a/k/a Original Townsite of Rutland, at a cost of $1.00 plus delinquent special assessments, if the property is not sold at the County’s auction on November 15. The Council discussed the cost estimate for replacement of two exterior entrance doors at City Hall. The Council postponed action until other cost estimates have been received and reviewed. The Council approved the October financial reports and payment of bills as presented. The Council Adjourned at 5:45 p.m. The next meeting of the Rutland City Council is scheduled for 5:00 p.m. on Monday, December 5, at the Rutland Town Hall. All meetings of the Rutland City Council are open to the public, and Rutland residents are invited to stop by to observe their City’s governing board in action.

Continue reading “The Rooster Crows – Nov. 11, 2022”

The Rooster Crows – Nov. 4, 2022

By Bill Anderson

Pleasant weather has been the rule of the week. The temperature on the evening of October 31, Halloween, was so mild that homeowners could sit out on their front porches to greet the little princesses, pirates, werewolves, and witches who hit the candy Mother Lode on their “tricks or treats” route. This was one of the nicest Halloweens in recent memory, although the keepers of weather records have told us that Halloween 2016 was even warmer. Last year, the temperature on Halloween was 42. Take your pick!

No tricks, but possibly some treats, are in store for past and future patrons of The Lariat Bar in Rutland. At a meeting of shareholders called by the directors of Rutland Improvement d/b/a The Lariat Bar LLC, held in the Bar on the evening of Thursday, October 27, the directors disclosed that a manager for the business has been hired, and intends to be on the job by mid-November. The Lariat is expected to be fully stocked, staffed and open for business, both at the bar and in the kitchen, by December 1, 2022. The name of the new manager has not yet been revealed, but it is not expected to be: Ink; Bud; Toddles; Ronald; Martin; Darwin; Kathy; Calvin; Wendy; Junior; Art; Deadeye; Bruce; Paula; Norman; Rita; Janice; Bradley; Rebecca; Jeremy; Mike; Pete; or, Michelle. There are no clues suggesting that Jack Prindiville will be taking over again, either. Just be patient. All will be revealed in due time. Just plan to be in Rutland at the beginning of December, when there will be hot times in the old town, again.

Renee Cramton of this community has been under Hospice care at Sanford Hospital on North Broadway in Fargo for the past several weeks. Renee has been fighting cancer for more than 25 years. She had moved to Bemidji to stay with her son, Jim Cramton, in early October, shortly after Uff-Da Day, but declining health required the move to Sanford in Fargo. Renee’s many friends in Rutland extend their best wishes to her and her family.

CORRECTION: In last week’s column that appeared in the Sargent County Teller it was reported that Joy Harris had accompanied Mike Harris and Andy Harris from San Diego CA to Rutland, arriving in Rutland on Tuesday, October 25. That was incorrect. Joy did not accompany Mike and Andy to Rutland. In fact, she was visiting family in the Philippine Islands at the time. Apologies are extended to Mike Harris, Joy Harris, Andy Harris and the readers of The Sargent County Teller for the error.

Continue reading “The Rooster Crows – Nov. 4, 2022”

The Rooster Crows – Oct. 28, 2022

By Bill Anderson

The weather roller coaster continues. From downright cold at the middle of last week to pleasant, with the temperature in the high 60’s on Friday & Saturday of last week to windy with a high of 77 on Sunday, culminating in a thunderstorm on Sunday evening that plunged the mercury into the 30’s and made up for its lack of rain with an abundance of violent wind, sharp bolts of lightning and ominous claps of thunder. Up to ¼ inch of rain from Sunday’s storm was reported from Weber Township, Forman and Cayuga, but Rutland and surrounding area received less than .1 of an inch amid all of the sound and fury. Well, as is written in Scripture, it does rain on all, the just as well as the unjust, alike, just not in equal amounts.

Pam Maloney reports that her high school graduating class, the Sargent Central Class of 1977, held a 45th Class Reunion at the Coteau des Prairies Lodge earlier this month. About one-third of the graduates attended and all had a good time reminiscing about the good old days. Pam stated that they enjoyed looking through the old Sargent Central annuals that have now been digitized and posted on Sargent Central’s internet web site at www.sargentcentral.org/digital-yearbooks. Even the handwritten notes and quotes are visible in the on-line versions of the annuals. Sargent Central’s first year, and first annual, began with the 1959-1960 school year. At that time, the District was made up of the Brampton, Cayuga, Cogswell and Forman School Districts. The Rutland and Rutland Consolidated School Districts joined Sargent Central in the fall of 1963, and the Havana School District became part of Sargent Central in the fall of 1969. According to Pam, most of her classmates have now figured out what they want to be when they grow up. Discussions are underway for the 50th Reunion in 2027.

Dan Carlyle of Wadena MN and Dan Kuffler of Scottsdale AZ were in Rutland from Thursday, October 20 to Sunday, October 23, hunting ducks and pheasants in the company of their sons. The group stayed at Ione Pherson’s short term rental property, “The Bird’s Nest,” during their Rutland visit. The 2 men have been frequent hunting season visitors in the Rutland area since the late 1980’s. Mr. Kuffler states that he recently acquired a summer home at Battle Lake MN, where he finds relief from Arizona’s oppressive summer heat. Mr. Carlyle was a classmate of Bill Anderson’s in the University of North Dakota Law School Class of 1988. After several decades practicing law in the courts of Minnesota, he recently changed careers and is now General Manager of the Todd-Wadena Rural Electric Cooperative, a co-op that provides electrical service to farms and rural communities in Todd and Wadena Counties. During many previous visits to this community, the Carlyle-Kuffler duo has been accompanied by Mr. John Nelson and Mr. Bill Spears of Wadena, but those 2 gentlemen stayed home to tend to other business this year. Dan & Dan report that both Mr. Nelson and Mr. Spears are in good health, as full of good stories and as ornery as ever. If any of those stories aren’t true, they should have been. Their many friends in the Rutland community extend best wishes to all 4 of them.

Jesse Brakke of Rutland; Claire Brakke of Madison WI; Janelle Brakke of Fargo; Robert & Darby (Brakke) Sebree of Cincinnati OH; Kaia Mahrer and children: Brody, Julia, Adalyn & Kaitlyn of Rutland; Steve Thorfinnson of Fort Ransom ND; and, Dana & Wanda (Brakke) Rasmussen of Moorhead MN; enjoyed lunch with Kathy Brakke of this community on Thursday, October 20, at the “Porter Creek” restaurant in Fargo. Kathy is the mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, mother-in-law and aunt of various members of the group. She currently resides at Mapleview Memory Care Center in Fargo. All those who attended the gathering report a very enjoyable time.

Rutland native Bonnie Anderson, now a resident of Brookings SD, was a visitor in her old home town from Friday, October 21 to Sunday, October 23. Bonnie was a guest of her sister-in-law, Dianna Anderson, and helped Dianna celebrate her birthday at the Rutland Seniors’ Center on Saturday, October 22. Bonnie’s primary reason for making the drive up to Rutland was to give her younger brother, Jerry Nelson, a training session in how to make apple pies the way their Mother, the late Betty (Colby) Nelson, used to make them. Many here remember that Betty was an outstanding cook, baker & pastry chef, and if anyone went away from her table hungry, it was their own fault. Betty also often contributed her considerable culinary talents to her sister and brother-in-law, Lois & Ralph Nelson, when they owned and operated the Rutland Café from 1962 to 1998. Those were the days!

Six first cousins, descendants of Rutland pioneers Ole & Julia (Peterson) Anderson, held a reunion at Prante’s Restaurant in Wahpeton on Friday, October 21. The following brief report was received from presiding Family Matriarch Sonja Christensen: “…Seven of us gathered at Prante’s – Beverly (Bartunek) Schons of Fargo; Steve & Vickie (Bartunek) Renner of Des Moines IA;, Joanne (Anderson) Harris of Rutland; Paul Anderson of Rutland; Judie (Anderson-Seavert) Grohs of Rosholt SD; and, me, Sonja (Anderson) Christensen of Wahpeton. Beverly & Vickie are daughters of the late Bill & Norma (Anderson) Bartunek; Joanne is the daughter of the late Melvin & Ila (Kronk) Anderson; Paul is a son of the late Earl & Irene (Henjum/Brown) Anderson; and, Judie & Sonja are daughters of the late Rudolph & Edna (Bernt) Anderson. A lot of stories and laughter proceeded around the table. Paul had to leave early to attend to some lake responsibilities, like leaves, dogs, etc. We then went over to my apartment where we had apple crisp and ice cream. The party ended too soon, but a special time was had by all. …” Thanks to Sonja for the report.

Kathy Wyum drove to Minneapolis on Friday, October 21, for a visit with one of her sons, Jesse Wyum, who resides in the area near Lake Bde Makaska, formerly known as Lake Calhoun. Kathy reported that they rented rooms in the Radisson Hotel that is attached to The Mall of America, and took advantage of the very pleasant weather to explore the area around Lake Bde Makaska that includes many classic homes from the Victorian era. Kathy returned home on Sunday, October 23.

John Hoflen of Bismarck ND visited family and friends in the Rutland area from Friday, October 21 through Monday, October 24. John, a 1962 graduate of RHS, was a longtime member of the North Dakota Army National Guard’s pistol and rifle marksmanship teams, and reported that he and his brother, Rob, used up a good part of last Saturday sharpening their shooting skills at the Rutland Sportsmen’s Club’s John Narum Trap & Rifle Range near Silver Lake. He headed back to Bismarck on Monday, October 24, after one more round of coffee and conversation with the Assembled Wise Men at the Rutland Seniors’ Center.

Stephen Kulzer of Hartford SD and his son, Will Kulzer of Brookings SD, along with their hunting dog, Indy, were visitors at the home of Stephen’s parents, Norbert & Beverly Kulzer, from Friday, October 21, through Sunday, October 23. Stephen & Will were hunting for wild ducks and ring neck pheasants, and had some luck on both counts. One of the ducks bagged by Will had a band on its leg, and he intended to check with the US Fish & Wildlife Service to find out when & where the duck had been banded. During the previous week, from Wednesday, October 12, to Saturday, October 15, Brooke Kulzer, one of Stephen & Ann Kulzer’s daughters, had been a guest of her grandparents in Rutland. Brooke is a graduate of SDSU in Brookings, working on her Master’s Degree, and had just completed a project studying shorebirds and other wildlife on the “Outer Banks” islands on the coast of North Carolina. One of the species they worked with was the sea turtle, which has become an endangered species in recent years, in part because of human encroachment on the turtles’ nesting habitat. Earlier this year Brooke had worked on a waterfowl banding project in southern Arkansas, and she is interested in finding out if the banded duck bagged by Will this past weekend was one that she banded last Spring. Brooke’s & Will’s sister, Lauren, is also a graduate of SDSU at Brookings, and is currently an RN working at a large hospital in Kansas City MO.

Members of Rutland Improvement d/b/a The Lariat Bar LLC Board of Managers met on the afternoons of Sunday, October 23 and Monday, October 24, in The Lariat Bar building on Rutland’s Main Street to interview applicants for the Bar’s management position. A meeting of shareholders has been called for 7:00 p.m. on the evening of Thursday, October 27, at the Lariat Bar.

Mike Harris, accompanied by Mike’s brother, Andy Harris of this community, arrived in Rutland at 6:00 a.m. on Tuesday, October 25. Andy had flown from Fargo to Mesa AZ on Thursday, October 20, and met Mike there. Mike had started heading this way with his pickup and 5th wheel travel trailer from San Diego CA a few days earlier. On Monday, October 24, Mike & Andy were in Amarillo TX at 6:30 in the morning, and decided to drive as far north as they could make it that day. They kept driving, stopping only for fuel, and made it all the way to Rutland in one, long, day of driving. Mike is now fully retired from the U. S. Navy, and plans to get in some pheasant hunting around the old home town before moving on.

Meanwhile, Halloween, with ghouls, ghosts, goblins and prowling politicians is just around the corner. Monday, October 31, is the big day for the ghouls, ghosts and goblins, but the politicians have to wait until Tuesday, November 8, for their ship to come in, or sink, whichever it might be. President Biden and former President Trump are not on the ballot this year, but they are hovering over it like a couple of Charles Dicken’s ghosts. Many voters are not enamored of President Biden, but they sure don’t want to return to the mean spirited incivility, chaos, corruption and calumny of another Trump Presidency, either. In the U.S. House of Representatives, Americans will choose whether America’s toughest Grandma, Nancy Pelosi, will be wielding the gavel, or if the whimpering wavering, quivering & quavering Kevin McCarthy will take her spot at the Speaker’s Rostrum. In the Senate, the choice is whether the fast talking New Yorker, Sen. Chuck Schumer, or wily Kentuckian, Sen. Mitch McConnell, will be setting the agenda. Big choices for a big country. In North Dakota, another 2 years of control of the State by big oil and big money appear to be on the horizon. Well, as one pro-Union South Carolina politician said of his State just prior to the Civil War, more than 162 years ago, “It’s too small to be a republic, and too large to be an insane asylum.” Some things in the body politic, like a bad dinner, just have to work their way through the system.

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.