Hens Do Crow! July 24, 2020

Monday, July 20, brought another round of rain to the area with various amounts of moisture reported. Shawn Klein reported that her rain gauge measured .40 inches at her home in Havana while Kenny Hamilton boasted .97 inches. Two-miles south of Rutland the rain was measured at .23 inches and north of Rutland at the Kyle and Kathy Marquette farm about two-inches of rain had fallen and the same storm left 1.2 inches north of Cayuga on the Rick Banish farmstead. The last few rainstorms have left varying amounts in the rain gauges.

The Rutland Housing, Inc., Board met on Monday, July 20, followed by the annual Housing meeting. Some Housing tenants attended the meeting to discuss the need for repairs at the buildings and some minor safety improvements such as exterior rails on the steps to help residents enter and exit the buildings in the winter. The Housing Board has not been able to hire a handyman to make repairs and changes as quickly as desired. There is also the ongoing issue of funding and expenditures as the units are not at full capacity to provide sufficient income.

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Hens Do Crow! April 12, 2019

By Deborah Banish

The 48th Annual Meeting of Rutland Housing, Inc., the non-profit corporation that owns and manages three apartment houses in Rutland, was held at 5:00 p.m. on Wednesday, April 3, 2019, in the Rutland Town Hall. Manager-Treasurer Bert Siemieniewski delivered the annual report of corporate activities for the past year as well as a financial report that showed a positive balance in the corporation’s books. Ms. Siemieniewski reported that, as of April 3, there were 9 apartments occupied and 5 apartments available for occupancy. She also reported that there are a number of prospective tenants who are expected to move into some of the available apartments in the near future. All three of the company’s apartment houses have undergone major renovations and improvements in the past few years, and work continues on updating and upgrading apartment units as funds are available. Rutland Housing was established in 1971 to provide housing for low income elderly persons in the community utilizing a long-term low interest financing program from the USDA’s Farmers Home Administration. The first apartment house, the four-plex at 207 First Street, was occupied on January 1, 1972. Two more apartment houses, another four-plex at 316 Ross Street and a six-plex at 204 Dakota Street, were built between 1972 and 1975. Rutland Housing’s first Board of Directors included: Earl Anderson; Rudy Anderson; Norbert Kulzer; Aldon Donaldson; and, Skip Sjothun. Kenny Briese was the manager of the Farmers Home Administration program in Sargent County in the early 70’s, and his knowledge of FmHA’s rules, regulations and procedures was instrumental in obtaining the financing to build the apartment houses. Current Directors and Officers of Rutland Housing, Inc., are: Delores Lysne, President; Bill Anderson, Vice-President; Carolyn Christensen, Secretary; and, Bert Siemieniewski, Treasurer/Manager. For information about renting one of Rutland Housing’s apartments, contact Manager Bert Siemieniewski at 724-3553. The next annual meeting of Rutland Housing, Inc., is scheduled for the first week in April, 2020.

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Hens Do Crow! March 29, 2019

By Deborah Banish

Agriculture was the focus on Thursday, March 21, with a salute to Farmers, Ranchers and Ag Businesses. The Ag Day event, organized by the NDSU Sargent County Extension Office, had been postponed due to the weather (what else!). It was held at the North Sargent School Activity Center and students from the three area schools attended as well as area farmers and ranchers and other residents. This event provided an opportunity for people in the community to become more aware and appreciative of ND agriculture. There were educational displays and talks about ND agricultural commodities, food samples made with ND grown commodities, and ag business representatives at the event to show and tell how they support farmers and ranchers to produce the food to feed the world. The County Extension Office extended a big thanks to North Sargent ag education and family and consumer science students and their teachers, Tanner Zetocha and Kylie Christianson; volunteers Phyllis Wyum and Kathy Marquette, ag businesses and their reps including CHS Dakota Plains, AW Diesel, Green Iron Implement, Full Circle Ag, Joe’s Fertilizer, Wild Rice SCD, and USDA NRCS; sponsors and donors including Arrowhead Transport, KT Cattle Company, Sargent County Farmers Union, Sargent County Farm Bureau, Four Star Ag, Bryan Johnson, District 7 Cattlewomen, ND Beef Commission, ND Wheat Commission, ND Corn Council, Midwest Dairy, ND Soybean Council, and ND Livestock Alliance, the North Sargent School, and all who attended the National Ag Day Salute to Farmers, Ranchers and Ag Businesses event! You all contributed to make it successful and fun! The Extension Office hopes to make this an annual event.

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The Rooster Crows – June 8, 2018

By Bill Anderson

The 2018 crop is in the ground. Some local growers finished up planting operations this past week, while others have been done for a couple of weeks or more, but the crop is in, and most of it’s up. Being done planting isn’t necessarily all roses, though. Mike Walstead reports that he was going to put his planter into storage last week, but had to move his combine out of the shop in order to get the planter in. As he backed out with the combine, one of the extensions on the combine’s hopper caught the bottom panel of the overhead door on Mike’s shop, so now he has some door repair work to get done, too. A farmer’s work is never done! Weed control will be a primary activity for most producers during the month of June, and Jason Arth, manager of Northern Plains Ag at Cayuga reports that demand for chemicals and spraying services has been brisk. The old cultivators that used to take out a few rows of corn with the weeds once in a while are now rusting in the trees, replaced by huge sprayers that cover more acres in an hour than the old 4-row cultivator could get done in a week. For the next couple of months all eyes will be turned to the sky, wondering when that next rain will come. Well, .2 of an inch of rain, accompanied by thunder, lightning and wind, did arrive late on the evening of Friday, June 1. Readings were uniform throughout the Rutland area, with Paul Anderson and Norbert Kulzer in town, Randy Pearson to the north, Doug Spieker to the south and Mike Walstead to the west all reporting .2 of an inch in their rain gauges on Saturday morning. Roger Pearson reported that someone had turned his rain gauge upside down, so it registered 0, although the outside of the gauge was damp. The agreement among rain gauges ended on the morning of Wednesday, June 6, though, as the thunderstorm that roared through at about 2:00 o’clock that morning put .7 of an inch into Norbert Kulzer’s rain gauge, but only .62 of an inch into Roger Pearson’s gauge located only a few feet from Norbert’s. The Assembled Wise Men averaged out the various reports, though, and have awarded an even .65 of an inch to the entire area, except to Rick Bosse who only received .4 of an inch at his farm near Brampton. Rick plans to put more effort into rainfall production next time.

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The Rooster Crows – March 30, 2018

By Bill Anderson

Snow or no snow, Winter or no Winter, Spring or no Spring, hundreds of thousands of snow geese filled the air over Rutland on the afternoon of Tuesday, March 27, hurling their ancient cries into the wind as they have for thousands of years, singing, “Here we come, ready or not!” The Weatherman keeps saying, “No, no, we’re not ready, yet.” But the geese know when it’s time to move, and they’re moving. Despite the chronological and solar arrival of Spring last week, Winter just does not seem to want to let go. This area received 2 to 3 inches of new snow on Saturday, March 24, and another 1 to 2 inches of snow on Monday, March 26. Mayor Narum and the City Council are to be commended for getting the City’s snowplow out early and often to keep the streets open and free of ice and compacted snow. The manufacturer of the City’s snowplow provides no warranty, though, and both the weatherman and the Mayor warn that more snow may be on the menu for the coming week. Back on February 2 the local Ground Hog, Rutland Rasputin, predicted 6 more weeks of winter. Well, Bub, your 6 weeks are up!

Diane Smith was moving into her newly renovated apartment in Rutland Housing’s 6-plex at 204 Dakota Street this week, and hoped to have the move completed by Saturday, March 31. The apartment received a make-over of the bathroom and kitchen, new floor coverings and a fresh coat of paint. Contractors working on the project included: Jerry Sapa Construction; Jacobson Plumbing, Heating & Excavating; and Lori McLaen Decorating. Another apartment in the building is also getting an upgrade, and all of Rutland Housing’s apartments are on the list for renovation work as funds are available in the future. Rutland Housing’s Manager, Bert Siemieniewski, states that, “…it hasn’t been easy, but it’s nice to get Diane’s apartment done so we can keep moving on the rest of them.” Rutland Housing’s 3 apartment houses were built between 1971 and 1974 and have all received extensive upgrades, both exterior and interior, in the past 2 years. Current officers and Directors of Rutland Housing, Inc. are: Delores Lysne, President; Bill Anderson, Vice-President; Carolyn Christensen, Secretary; and, Bertha Siemieniewski, Treasurer/Manager. To inquire about apartments for rent, contact Bert at 724-3553.

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The Rooster Crows – April 1, 2009

By Bill Anderson

“Tough times don’t last.  Tough people do,” says the Rev. Robert Shuler. A brutal winter, the worst since 1996-’97, ended on March 20 and has been followed by a Spring that has turned into a cruel April Fool’s joke. Temperatures into the 50’s for a few days turned the 6 feet of snow that fell during the Winter into rapidly moving floodwaters, sweeping away approaches and culverts, as well as County and Township roads. Two miles south of Rutland, the rampaging Wild Rice River undermined County Road #10 and then swept it away on Wednesday, March 25, leaving a yawning chasm, through which the foaming, frigid waters of the normally placid stream roared, in their headlong rush to reach the Red River, Lake Winnipeg and Hudson’s Bay. Damage to Township roads has been even more extensive, and caution is advised when traveling throughout the area, especially when crossing water covered roads, as the road may have been washed away. In Rutland, Mayor Narum spent several days pumping water backed up by frozen culverts away from residential areas.  Other than the normal spring seepage into a few basements, no serious water damage has been reported in town. To the north, our neighbors in Milnor spent most of the week of March 21-27 sandbagging and diking to protect their community from the rising waters of Storm Lake. An exhaustive, round the clock effort saved Milnor and the City officials, employees and volunteers who accomplished the feat deserve a pat on the back and a hearty, “Job well done!” from their fellow Sargent County citizens. A number of volunteers from Rutland went up to Milnor to assist with the flood fight there. Further to the north, the City of Fargo made national news headlines with its fight to save North Dakota’s largest city from the floodwaters of the overflowing Red River of the North. “When the going gets tough, the tough get going,” the old-timers used to say, and Fargo proved to be tougher than whalebone, as thousands of volunteers from the city, from throughout the tri-state region and from across the nation poured in to fill sandbags, build dikes and evacuate threatened homes. Rutland native and current Fargo resident Gary Narum (RHS Class of ’60) reports that he spoke with volunteers from Chicago, Minneapolis, Manitoba and even Rutland while he was working on sandbag dikes on Fargo’s south side. Gary said that he saw several volunteers wearing the distinctive Rutland-Cayuga Fire Department shirts working on the dikes. Among the volunteers from Rutland who participated in the Fargo flood fight were: Cameron Gulleson; Jim Fust; Peder Gulleson; Trent Mahler; Paul Anderson; Mitch Mahrer; Mike Mahrer; Kyle Mahrer; Rob Wyum; Mike Kulzer; Diane Kulzer; and, a number of others whose names are not known by this reporter. As a punctuation mark to the flood disaster, Mother Nature gifted the area with a snowstorm that deposited anywhere from a foot to 26 inches of wet, heavy snow on the 30 & 31 of March, the ultimate April Fool’s joke for shovelers on the morning of Wednesday, April 1. Certainly, when compared to some other natural disasters that have occurred in this nation in recent years, North Dakotans can be proud of the way they have conducted themselves in facing this crisis. “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger,” it has been said, and there is no doubt that those who have endured and survived the Winter and Spring of ’08-’09 are the stronger for it. They have earned the titles of Tough, Hardy and, in some cases, even Heroic. For the vast majority of the volunteers who fought the flood, their only reward will be the satisfaction of knowing that, in a time of crisis and need, they came to the aid of their neighbors, and prevailed. When this crisis ends, as it soon will, North Dakotans will pick up the pieces, clean up the mess, repair the damage, go back about their normal lives and start preparing for the next test.  That next tough time won’t last, either, but the tough people will.

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