The Rooster Crows – Sept. 9, 2022

By Bill Anderson

The days are warm, the nights are cool, the lawns are getting brown, but the leaves have not yet begun to fall. It’s September, the most pleasant month of the year. Other States are flooding out or burning up, but up on the northern plains, out here on the prairie, residents are enjoying their reward for surviving December, January, February, and March. This little bit of Heaven called September doesn’t last very long, although it can occasionally stretch out and wrap itself around a substantial chunk of October, too, but it sure is nice while it’s here. Every silver lining has its cloud, though. Our old friend, the late Clayton McLaen, used to remind us that, “North Dakota has only two seasons: Winter; and getting ready for Winter.” It’s a sobering thought. Brace yourself, it’s coming. But, could we enjoy September half as much had we not experienced January?

Harvey Bergstrom, Mike Banish, Rick Banish, and Chuck Anderson took advantage of the pleasant weather for a trip up to the Western Minnesota Steam Threshers Reunion at Rollag MN, on Friday, September 2, the first day of the 4-day event. Rumley Oil-Pull tractors were featured at the event this year. “Kerosene Annie,” the oldest Rumley tractor in existence, built during the first decade of the 20th Century, was the star of the show.  She is normally on exhibit in a glass case out in Idaho, but this year she broke loose and came out to Rollag to display her power and do some of the work she was built to handle more than a century ago. The four local men report a very good time observing steam power, horsepower and oil power in action.

The whitetail deer archery hunting season opened on Saturday, September 3, and two expert hunters in the hills of Tewaukon Township, Jim Huckell and his son, Bill, wasted no time in filling their tags. By sundown on opening day, they had each bagged a big buck, with its antlers still in velvet, and were getting ready to enjoy some venison.

Chuck Sundlie took advantage of the nice weather during the Labor Day weekend to apply a coat of paint to the south side of his house in the 400 Block of Cooper Street. Chuck’s house was originally built and occupied by the Osterberg family back in the early days of the 20th Century. Dick Meyers recalled that Grandma Osterberg was a very kind and generous person who was always willing to contribute her time or donate her resources to community and school causes back in the 1930’s & 40’s.

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The Rooster Crows – Sept. 2, 2022

By Bill Anderson

Even though the cell phone had predicted sunshine, another welcome rain fell on Rutland and vicinity on the afternoon of Friday, August 26. Bradley Wyum reported .3 of an inch in his gauge 1½ block east of Main Street, but there were several bugs in the gauge so he checked the neighbor’s rain gauge, too, and found that it registered .25 of an inch and was free of bugs. Two blocks to the east Roger Pearson & Norbert Kulzer both had .25 of an inch in their gauges. As their gauges agree so seldom as to make agreement notable, the assumption is that at least one of the gauges, maybe both of them, must be wrong. Kurt Breker reported .35 of an inch at his farm south of Cayuga. The long-range forecast is now for sunny weather for the next several weeks, so stand by for a flood. Weather forecasters and politicians have two skills in common: first, they can predict with absolute certainty what’s going to happen; and second, they can explain, with equal certainty, why it didn’t. Well, we can’t do much about the weather, but we do have it within our power to replace the current crowd of politicians with a new bunch. Throw the old rascals out and give our new rascals a chance!

Mike & Debbie Banish departed Rutland on the morning of Monday, August 29, bound for Medora ND on a shakedown cruise with their recently acquired motor home. The Banishes were planning to do some touring in Theodore Roosevelt National Park on their Polaris side by side RV, which they towed behind the motor home. They plan to be back home when they get back home, sometime in the next week or two.

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The Rooster Crows – Aug. 26, 2022

By Bill Anderson

A very welcome rain fell on Rutland and vicinity on the morning of Friday, August 19. Even Kurt Breker’s perennially drought parched fields near Cayuga were blessed with 1.1 inch of cool, clear rainwater. Norbert Kulzer reported that his rain gauge registered 1 inch when the rain had stopped falling, while the gauge of his next door neighbor, Roger Pearson, showed only .65 of an inch. Mike Wyum reported that he has 3 rain gauges in the garden at his Ransom Township farm, and that one of them held .9, one held .95 and one held 1.1 inch. Mike says that he’s adding them all together, dividing by 3 to get the average, and then rounding up to arrive at a full inch of precipitation. Harvey Bergstrom reported 1½” at the Bergstrom farm 2 miles south of Cayuga, and Chuck Anderson reported that his rain gauge showed 1.02” after the rain had stopped and the clouds had cleared away at his farm in Weber Township. It is reported that cornstalks in local fields are “…smiling from ear to ear.” Some more rain wouldn’t hurt, but no one is complaining right now.

Chuck & Mary Beth Anderson; Mike & Phyllis Wyum; Alan & Doreen Olstad; and, Mark & Kathy Wyum; boarded a bus at Forman sponsored by the Sargent County Farmers Union on the afternoon of Wednesday, August 17, for a trip to Fargo to attend a F-M Red Hawks baseball game at Newman Outdoor Stadium. The Red Hawks took on the Sioux Falls Canaries, and whipped ‘em by a score of 7 to 0. Well, you wouldn’t expect a canary to do very well in a contest with a Hawk, anyway, would you? All who made the trip report that the afternoon at the ballpark was very enjoyable.

Rutland natives Mike & Diane Kulzer, now of Fargo, were visitors in their old home town from Friday, August 19 to Monday, August 22. They visited Diane’s mother, Phyllis Erickson, and helped her with some chores around the house during their stay. Mike also did some repair work on the deer stands on his hunting grounds near Rutland.

Family, friends and neighbors got together at the Coteau des Prairies Lodge on Saturday, August 20, to celebrate Curt & Judy (Lee) Silseth’s 50th Wedding Anniversary. The Party was organized by the Silseths’ 3 children: Jill; JJ; and, Christie; and Curt & Judy didn’t know that the party was for them until they got there. The Silseths’ many friends in the Rutland community congratulate them on the occasion of their Golden Wedding Anniversary, and extend best wishes to them for many good years to come.

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The Rooster Crows – August 19, 2022

By Bill Anderson

The old saying that, “No news is good news,” does not apply when it comes to rain. As of Tuesday, August 16, there was no news about rain, and that was not good news. Well, the old timers always used to tell us that, “It always rains after a long dry spell,” and once again, the old timers were right! The dry spell had lasted about long enough, and accompanied by just enough thunder and lightning to awaken a person, but not enough to get them out of bed, a little rain was provided early on Wednesday morning. It wasn’t much, Chuck Anderson measured .07 of an inch at his Weber Township farm, and Mike Banish’s rain gauge held .08 of an inch on Wednesday morning, but it was enough to wash off some dust and put a sparkle on the lawn. Surprisingly, the corn and soybean crops still look pretty good, and the 2022 spring wheat crop, although there aren’t many acres, looks pretty good, too. Perhaps Mother Nature is just showing us, once again, that she can be generous or miserly, and there just isn’t one darned thing that we can do about it. Our only choice is whether we complain about what isn’t there, or express our gratitude for what is. We can think about that while we’re vacationing in Florida, Arizona or Mexico this coming Winter.

Capt. & Mrs. Mike Harris departed Rutland on the morning of Monday, August 8, bound for their home at San Diego CA. They planned to make the trip slow and easy but drove as far as North Platte NE on Monday evening. Their second stop was at Colorado Springs CO on Tuesday evening. They arrived safely in San Diego by the weekend. They plan to be back in Rutland after the Captain has been officially debriefed and detached from the U. S. Navy, sometime around the 1st of November.

The steering committee composed of : Katie McLaen; Mike Wyum; and, Paul Anderson; appointed by investors to complete the purchase of the Lariat Bar and get organized to get the business back in business reports that progress is being made on all fronts. To date, approximately $220,000.00 has been invested in Rutland Improvement LLC d/b/a The Lariat Bar, and it is expected that there are still a few more investors who will be chipping in on the project in the next few days. Committee member Katie McLaen recently sent out a press release to local news outlets and web sites informing qualified persons that those interested in a management position with the enterprise should contact: Paul Anderson @ 701.261.4638; Mike Wyum @ 701.678.3634; or, Katie McLaen @ 701.680.9354. The plan is to be up and running as soon as possible, with a target date of October 1, 2022, or earlier.

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The Rooster Crows- August 5, 2022

By Bill Anderson

Back in the 1930’s, our parents & grandparents used to sing, “It ain’t gonna rain no more, no more; It ain’t gonna rain no more. So how in the heck can I wash my neck if it ain’t gonna rain no more.” Well, it finally did rain, and, as those Old Timers used to say, “It always rains after a long dry spell.” We’re looking for that rain around here, but there hasn’t been any precipitation of any consequence for quite a while. Meanwhile, the growing crops have been reaching for whatever moisture is in the soil, and that’s starting to run short on the hilltops. It’s not the first time it’s been dry around here, and it won’t be the last, but, for this summer, it has gone on long enough. We’re ready to be too wet, again.

Steve & Sheila Wyum took off on a summer vacation trip on Friday, July 22, with their first stop at Medora and the Theodore Roosevelt National Park, where they saw the sights and took in the Medora Musical at the Burning Hills Amphitheater. Next on their agenda was the Little Big Horn Battlefield where a Native American guide from the Crow tribe gave them a guided tour of the area where Gen. George Armstrong Custer and the 7th U. S. Cavalry met their end at the hands of Crazy Horse, Sitting Bull and the combined might of the Sioux, Cheyenne and Arapahoe tribes. (It should be noted that Crow scouts also guided Custer and the 7th on that fateful day back in June of 1876.) From there, they enjoyed the scenery of the Big Horn Mountains as they headed for Cheyenne, Wyoming, where they took in the Rodeo & Frontier Days. The last stop on their tour was the ranch of Steve’s cousin, Tommy Fabris, a grandson of the late Isabel Kulzer, in northwestern South Dakota. Tom was a professional rodeo bronc buster in his younger days, until one broke his back, once again proving that old cowboy proverb that, “There’s never a horse that couldn’t be rode, and never a cowboy that couldn’t be throwed.” He made a complete recovery, but now restricts himself to horses that can be, and have been, rode. The Wyums returned to their Ransom Township farm home on Tuesday, August 2, known to Icelanders as “The Deuce of August,” and celebrated by them as their National Day.

Debbie & Mike Banish, Rick Banish and Mark Wyum departed Rutland on Thursday, July 28, bound for Belton MO, a suburb of Kansas City, where Debbie, Mike & Rick checked out a motor home RV. They bought one, a 2019 Integra 45’ Motor Home, equipped with a full kitchen, living room, 1 master bedroom & a pull-out sleeping area, 2 bathrooms, a 605 horsepower X1500 Cummins diesel engine and a separate engine with a generator that produces enough electricity to run the motor home’s 3 air-conditioners. “It’s nicer than our house,” said Debbie. While at Belton, they looked up one of Mark’s & Mike’s old classmates, Becky (Reif) Hall, and her husband, Kirby. Becky is the youngest of the 3 children of the Late Rev. Jack & Martha Reif who were part of this community from 1953 to 1964 when Jack served as pastor of the First Baptist Church and Martha was a teacher and principal in the Rutland school system.  Becky & Kirby invited the quartet from Rutland to their home in Belton for supper on the evening of Friday, July 29. Mark served as an unpaid consultant during the trip, and, as any lawyer can tell you, “Advice is worth what you pay for it.”

The TNT Parish, composed of Trinity Lutheran Church of Forman; Nordland Lutheran Church of Rutland; and, Trinity Lutheran Church of Havana; held a joint service at the Silver Lake Park Pavilion at 10:00 a.m. on Sunday, July 31, the 5th Sunday of the month. It was Pastor Julie Johnson’s Sunday off, so Rachel Hoistad from Trinity at Forman conducted the service. Mrs. Hoistad is currently studying for the ministry. Following the service, a pot-luck dinner at which the cornucopia of good, home cooked fare overflowed, was served. Pastor Johnson will be departing for Holden Village WA on Friday, August 5, where she will take part in a retreat for pastors of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). She plans to return on Saturday, August 13.

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The Rooster Crows – July 29, 2022

By Bill Anderson

When Mike & Debbie Banish returned home in the early morning hours of Sunday, July 24, Mike checked their electronic rain gauge and found that it had recorded .9 of an inch of precipitation since he had last checked it back on Tuesday, July 12. The Banishes, along with Mike’s brother, Rick, and friends Mark & Jeannie Bopp had been on a 12-day tour of Alaska that had culminated with a cruise down the Inland Passage from Whittier AK, near Anchorage, to Vancouver BC. The trip, sponsored by the Farmers Union and Colette Travel, had begun with a flight from Fargo to Fairbanks AK via Minneapolis; and a train and bus tour from Fairbanks to Anchorage that took them past Mt. Denali, formerly Mt. McKinley and through the spectacular mountains of the Alaska Range to the port of Anchorage. The scenery, both on land and on sea, was magnificent, Mike stated. The group flew from Vancouver back to Fargo, again via Minneapolis. Air accommodations were supplied by Delta Airlines. But that’s not the entire story. The .9 of an inch of rain mike noticed on his return home had come as the result of several thunderstorms that had rumbled over Rutland and vicinity during their absence. And that’s not the entire story, either. The thunderstorms, in addition to the usual thunder and lightning, had also been accompanied by some hail and high winds in some areas, from several miles west of Rutland to several miles southeast of town. The toughest storm hit on Wednesday night, July 20, damaging crops from the Lock farm in the middle of Rutland Township to east of the Breker farm in Tewaukon Township. The wind destroyed a pole storage building on the Doug & Cher Spieker farmstead, formerly the Clarence & Adeline Breker farm, in Tewaukon Township, and took several hay bales for a nighttime airborne trip to the east. Follow up rains on Thursday night, July 21 & Saturday morning, July 23 were more gentle in their nature and character, leaving a few tenths of welcome rain with each occurrence. Growing crops around the area could use some more rain, but the wind and the ice are phenomena non grata.

Kathy Wyum; Mary Beth Anderson; Joanne Harris; and Patty Breker departed Rutland on Wednesday, July 20, and drove up to Cavalier ND to take in the Frostfire Theater group’s performance of “The Sound of Music” in Icelandic State Park. They were joined at Cavalier by Rutland native Mary (Olstad) Indridson, who accompanied them to the performance. Kathy and Mary Beth had seen the musical a month earlier but were so impressed by the quality of the performance that they wanted to experience it again. A good time was had by all, and justifiably so.

Cayuga native Randy Kiefer stopped by Rutland on the evening of Wednesday, July 20, for a visit with an old friend, Bill Anderson. Randy has been visiting at the home of his sister and brother-in-law, Pam & Keith Hoistad, northeast of Milnor, for the past month. Randy is a bicycling enthusiast, and last year he rode his bike out to Portland, Maine, and spent the Winter there. This Spring, he rode from Maine down to North Carolina, then over to Missouri and up to North Dakota. Randy is planning to continue his summer pilgrimage on Thursday, July 28, when he intends to start riding west, heading for his former headquarters at San Luis Obispo CA. He plans to pause at Sheridan WY for a visit with a niece, Michelle Hoistad, before completing the ride to California. After he arrives in CA, he plans to fly off to Portugal for a bike tour of that country with friends before heading to Morocco on the North African coast to begin a tour of that region of the world, from the northwestern corner of Africa to the northeast corner, at Egypt. Due to hazardous conditions in that part of the world, Randy intends to forsake his bicycle for the comfort and relative safety of bus, train & plane travel. Bill & Randy drove over to Lidgerwood on Wednesday evening, and met up with another old friend, Kevin Oland, at Dee’s Bar & Café. The three enjoyed a very pleasant evening, reminiscing about “the good old days,” when Wednesday night in the Summer would have had every town in rural America full of people doing business. Last Wednesday evening, there were three vehicles on Main Street in Lidgerwood, one was Randy’s, one was Kevin’s and the third may have been abandoned. There were no vehicles on Main Street in Rutland, not even any that may have been abandoned. “The times, they are a’changin’,” sang Bob Dylan, and he was right.

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