News & Events

The Rooster Crows – December 4, 2015

The first snow of the season blanketed Rutland and vicinity in 4 to 6 inches of white, wet crystallized precipitation on the afternoon and evening of Monday, November 30.  Mayor Narum had the recently tuned up and washed City snowplow truck all plugged in and ready to go by 4:30 on Tuesday morning, and had the streets cleared in time for Bobcat workers to get to the factory for the morning shift, and for the garbage truck to make its regular rounds without difficulty.  County and State snowplows, too, were out bright and early, getting the slush off the roads before it became permanent.  The temperature, at 30 degrees on Tuesday morning, remained moderate, and some highs in the 40’s are being predicted for week’s end.  This first blast of snow may not last, but it is a good reminder of what is to come, and a chance for local drivers to brush up on winter driving skills prior to the big exam scheduled for February and March of 2016.

Rutland’s Community Christmas Tree arrived in town on Monday, November 30, once again a gift to the community from the Joe & Patty Breker family and the Doug & Cher Spieker family.  The big evergreen was cut from the grove northeast of the Coteau des Prairies Lodge as part of a thinning program to preserve the health of the remaining trees in the grove.  Rutland’s 24-hour decorating crew, ram-rodded by Rodney & Jake Erickson, has volunteered to get the tree into its stand on the corner of First and Arthur Streets, and to get the lights on prior to Santa Claus Day, which is scheduled for Saturday, December 19.  Greg Donaldson reminds local business folks that he is now collecting for the Christmas turkeys that will be awarded to lucky winners by Santa Claus himself during Santa Claus Day festivities at the Rutland Town Hall.

City Auditor Deb Banish was observed cruising down the sidewalk on Rutland’s Main Street on Tuesday, November 24, and she was positively scooting along.  Deb had surgery to repair a fracture of her left ankle a week earlier, back on Tuesday, November 17, and she has found that using a “Wheeler Kneeler” scooter enables her to get around while keeping her ankle up and away from danger of re-injury.  “You have to be a little careful,” she says, as hitting a crack in the sidewalk a little too fast could result in taking a header into the concrete.  It was suggested that Deb should be wearing a helmet while cruising on the Wheeler Kneeler, but she promised to be careful instead.

Kyle Mahrer, Mike Mahrer and Barry Christianson of Rutland, accompanied by Chad Koziol of Starbuck MN and Larry Kenyon, Steve Thorfinnson and Alwood Huckell of Fort Ransom ND, returned home on Monday, November 23, at the conclusion of a whitetail deer hunting trip to southwestern Kentucky.  The hunters headquartered at Fulton KY, near Clinton KY, southwest of Paducah.  Kentucky has a surplus of whitetail deer, and the party of 7 bagged 22 deer before calling it quits and heading for home on Monday.  They could have purchased more whitetail permits and continued hunting, but, “You can only eat so much deer baloney,” according to Kyle.  Kyle, Mike, Barry & Chad have hunted this area of Kentucky for the past several years.  Clinton KY is the hometown of Tommy & Rosemary Jones who made many friends in Rutland several years ago, while doing contract work for the South Dakota Rail Authority on the rail line that runs through Rutland.

Norbert & Bev Kulzer enjoyed Thanksgiving dinner at the home of Norbert’s sister & brother-in-law, Karen & Merrill Buisker, at Millette SD.  They were also joined by one of the Buiskers’ sons, Ben Buisker, and his family, from Aberdeen.  Millette is situated south of Aberdeen SD, about halfway between Aberdeen and Redfield.  Norbert reports that Karen is recuperating well from recent knee surgery.

Paul Anderson returned to Rutland on the evening of Sunday, November 29, after spending the Thanksgiving holiday at the home of his daughter and son-in-law, Katie & Josh Elfering, in Chicago.  Also joining Paul at the Elfering home were Carol Fridgen of Nevis MN and Betsy Anderson of Philadelphia MS.  Paul reports that the traffic on the Interstate Highway from Madison WI to Chicago was bumper to bumper in both directions on Wednesday, November 25, the day before Thanksgiving.  Paul and Carol headed for home on Saturday in order to avoid a repeat of the pre-Thanksgiving traffic jam.  Paul reports that Chicago experienced rainy weather throughout his visit, but no ice or snow.

Curt and Renee Larson arrived safely at their winter home in Apache Junction AZ, and sent the following greeting to friends here on Sunday, November 29: “We loved the article in the Rooster Crows. One slight correction though, the convertible that Renee drives is a Chevrolet Camaro, not a Mustang.  My brother-in-law, Colin Sundquist, would have wanted us to get a Mustang as he is a Ford man. However, just to keep the argument going, we bought a Chevrolet instead.  A little cooler weather here in Apache Junction, AZ….lows in the upper 30’s and highs in the 60’s, but I’m sure warmer weather is on its way.  Greetings to all our friends at Nordland and Havana Trinity Lutheran churches. We miss you already.  Curt Larson.”

John & Joanne Harris drove to West Branch, Iowa, on Tuesday, November 24, and spent the Thanks giving holiday there, at the home of their daughter and son-in-law, Kathy & Rick Stout.  The Harrises returned to Rutland on Monday, November 30, just in time for the first snowfall of the season.

The Rutland General Store & Café have been on the market for several months, and the owner, Gretchen Vann, has set a December 31 deadline for either selling to a new owner or locking the doors.  Ms. Vann built the new store building in 2007, and acquired the Rutland Café, built by Bernard Mahrer back in 1948, in 2009.  The Café was extensively renovated at that time, and the 2 buildings have been connected by an interior walkway for the past 6 years.  Fadness Realty of Lisbon is marketing the property for Ms. Vann, and inquiries should be directed to Bruce Fadness at 683-4909.  At one time the Main Street Café was a landmark in every small town, but the times have been changing, and there are now only 2 traditional, family-style Cafes operating in Sargent County: the Rutland Café in Rutland; and, the Farmers Inn at Havana.  In some communities, one or more of the local bars have taken over some lunch-time and evening meal duties, but there aren’t many places left that serve a full breakfast.  Operating a Main Street retail business in small town North Dakota is not for the weak or faint of heart, but for those with ideas and the energy to implement them it can be an interesting and rewarding endeavor.

Meanwhile, on the national scene, the Donald Trump phenomenon continues to confound political pundits on both the left and the right.  A substantial majority of Republican voters have, so far, rejected experienced Republican office holders in favor of Mr. Trump and one of the other neophyte office seekers in the pack, Dr. Ben Carson.  A recent poll showed that the 2 newcomers are favored by 54% of the Republican faithful, with the remaining dozen candidates all languishing in the single digits.  Many voters, not all of them Republican, seem to like Mr. Trump’s confrontational, in your face style and his practice of never apologizing and never backing down, no matter how egregious the insult or falsehood.  Every sexist condescension, every racist insult, every vehement defense of a demonstrably false statement, only seems to increase The Donald’s popularity with the GOP base.  Thirty years ago, it was said of a popular politician of the time that, “He remembers the future and imagines the past.”  Mr. Trump’s grasp on reality seems to be less firm than that.  Republican Party professionals predicted last Spring that Mr. Trump’s candidacy would fade in a couple of weeks.  Last Summer they predicted that it would fade in a couple of months.  Now they are predicting that he won’t get past the first caucuses and primaries, despite what the polls are telling them.  There are those who hold that Donald Trump will be the destruction of the Republican Party, and there are those who hold that he will be its salvation.  One way or the other, it looks as if it will be an interesting show.

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 stop by the Rutland blog and Facebook page while you’re at it, too.  Remember, this Christmas season, 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.

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