News & Events

The Rooster Crows – June 3, 2016

MaIt was a beautiful morning on the second to the last day of May, what a late May morning should be, warm, bright sun, blue sky, green grass, tree leaves rustling and Flags snapping in a light breeze from the east.  It was Memorial Day, Monday, May 30, 2016, a day for remembrance and somber reflection.  A day for reunions with families and friends.  A day to reflect on the price of citizenship that is required of some Americans, and all too often forgotten by their countrymen.  At 10:15 the American Legion Ceremonial Detail was called to order and began its annual march to a position in the southeast corner of the Nordland Cemetery, followed by the members of the American Legion Auxiliary who marched to their assigned locations.  This year’s Ceremonial Detail, the 71st since the end of World War II, was composed of Andrew Hoflen and John Harris bearing the Colors; Ted Lee, Chaplain; Calvin Jacobson, Sergeant At Arms; Doug Olstad; Roger McLaen; Larry Christensen; Roger Nelson; Tom Manley; and, Roger Pearson, Riflemen.  Bugler Logan Wyum, with Legion members Doug Spieker and Bill Anderson, stood at attention near the Cemeteries flagpole where the National Ensign fluttered at half staff, in mourning for America’s war dead.  The sun reflected off gold eagles and white helmets, the dark blue and gold of the Legionnaires’ uniforms in stark contrast to the green grass and bright blue sky.  “Detail, Halt!” barked the Sergeant at Arms.  Recalling skills learned on parade fields 45 to 55 years ago, the detail members executed that command, and others, with precision.  Following a prayer by the Chaplain, the members of the Legion Auxiliary deposited floral decorations on the graves of all military veterans.  The Sergeant At Arms gave the order, “Load Rifles…Aim…Fire…and 6 Springfield 1903A3 rifles, veterans of battles from the Argonne in WWI to Guadalcanal in WWII, roared as one.  Three volleys were fired by the detail’s riflemen, followed by “present Arms!” and the haunting melody of “Taps” floating across the Spring countryside.  With the commands “Order Arms,” “Right Face,” and Forward March! The detail marched past the flagpole and out to the cemetery’s main gate.  The ritual was repeated 3 times at the Rutland Cemetery, after which the detail, and the crowd assembled at the cemeteries, proceeded to the Rutland Town Hall for the annual Memorial Day program planned and presented by the American Legion Auxiliary.  This year’s program honored those who had served in the Korean War, 1950-53, and featured readings by Carolyn Christensen and Sonja Christensen, as well as musical selections, “The Boogie-Woogie Bugle Boy of Company B,” by a quintet composed of Carolyn Christensen, Wendy Jacobson, Pam Maloney, Marcia Brakke and Diane Smith, and “My Buddy” by Thomas Mehrer.  Post Commander Larry Christensen presented newly elected 10th District Commander Tom Manley with a commemorative gavel in honor of his election as Commander of the North Dakota American Legion’s 10th District, which includes Rutland’s Bergman-Evenson Post #215 and 24 other Legion Posts in southeastern North Dakota.  Following the program, volunteers helped rearrange chairs and set up tables for the Memorial Day Potluck Dinner with coffee and conversation to follow.  At Noon the Flags were raised to the top of the pole once again, and life went on, with family gatherings and reunions of old friends throughout the remainder of the day.

Prior to Memorial Day, the Rutland Raiders 4-H Club placed 2 flower box planters by the Rutland Seniors Center on Main Street and 3 flower box planters near the Rutland Town Hall on Gay Street.  The planter boxes are complete with beautiful flowers, and are a very attractive addition to the community.  Thanks to the Rutland Raiders 4-H Club, and to their leader, Debbie Banish, for this gift of floral beauty.

Another attractive feature on Rutland’s Main Street, the Ray Siemieniewski Memorial on the corner of First and Arthur Streets, was cleaned, trimmed, weeded and watered by Ray’s son, Troy Siemieniewski, last week.  The memorial, just across the street from the Sargent County Bank and just north of the Erickson Building, was a 2006 gift to the community from the family of the late Ray Siemieniewski, in memory of their husband, father and grandfather.

Among those from a distance attending Memorial Day observances in Rutland were: David & Pat Kulzer of Condon MT; Richard Meyers of Sun City AZ; Alyson Glarum of Fargo; Sarah Dobmeyer of Fargo; Harlan Nundahl of Fargo; Ed Christensen of Bismarck; Clarence “Stub” & Sharon Sundlie of Fargo; and, many more.  According to the plate count, 85 diners enjoyed the pot-luck dinner organized by the Rutland Community Club.  Dianna Anderson was chairperson of the Memorial Day dinner committee.

Thunderstorms at 8:30 in the morning and 9:30 in the evening of Wednesday, May 25 washed the dust from grass and tree leaves while providing thirsty crops with a much needed, if limited, drink of water.  The total rainfall was .5 of an inch from both events, according to the rain gauges maintained by Norbert Kulzer and Roger Pearson on Rutland’s east side.  Another thunderstorm on the evening of Monday, May 30, brought Memorial Day to an appropriate close with a show of lightning and thunder accompanied by rainfall that measured from .29 of an inch in Norbert Kulzer’s gauge at 415 Gay Street to .36 of an inch measured in Paul Anderson’s gauge only 1 block to the west.  It was a nice rain, but all agreed that more would be welcomed.

The Dakota, Missouri Valley & Western (DMV&W) Railroad has been unloading rails and other supplies along the old Great Northern rail line that runs through Rutland for the past couple of weeks.  According to Bruce Lindholm of the South Dakota Rail Authority in Pierre SD, about 28 miles of track from Aberdeen to the Geneseo Junction is being upgraded with 112-pound rail.  According to Mr. Lindholm, all rail that is lighter than 90 pounds to the yard is being replaced in order to allow the DMV&W to pull longer, heavier 110 car unit trains from the Wheaton-Dumont Co-op’s new unit train loading facility in Britton SD.  A crew of about 2 dozen workmen was at work in Rutland on Thursday, May 26.  Like the crew that built the rail line for James J. Hill’s Great Northern Railway 130 years ago, many on the current work crew are immigrants, willing to handle the dangerous tools, haul the heavy loads and perform the hard work required to keep the American economy moving.  The South Dakota Rail Authority owns the track, states Mr. Lindholm, but the DMV&W is in charge of the upgrade.  The work crew is able to get about a mile a day completed.  The Rutland Elevator has been operating as a buying and receiving facility for the Wheaton-Dumont Co-op for the past year.  The Rutland Elevator will be delivering the grain it purchases for the co-op to Britton this year, rather than to Tenney MN, shortening the haul time considerably.

Al Murack stopped in at The Lariat for coffee and conversation on Wednesday, May 25 and Thursday, May 26.  Al states that he is looking for some volunteers to assist with installing new roofing on the Cayuga Community Hall.  The shingles need replacing, states Al, and the project is too costly for the City of Cayuga and the Cayuga Hall Association to hire the job done.  The Cayuga Hall was built in 1954, and has been the scene of many basketball games, volleyball games, roller skating parties, wedding dances & receptions, smokers, political rallies, community dinners, and other events too numerous to mention, over the past 62 years.  Anyone willing to volunteer their labor to keepa valuable community asset in good repair and available for community events and activities should contact Al at 724-3436.  Cash donations to the Cayuga Hall Association for the maintenance of the Hall are always welcome, too.

Another Cayuga native, Chuck Kiefer, now a resident of Austin TX, stopped in Rutland for supper at the Lariat Bar on the evening of Thursday, May 26.  Chuck stated that he and Caroline are at their lake home at Big Lake MN for the Summer, and he was in this area to visit his sister, Lois Breker, and to take in Memorial Day observances at Cayuga on Monday, May 30, at the Cayuga Hall.

Bert Siemieniewski, Manager of Rutland Housing’s apartment houses here, reports that approval has been received from USDA-Rural Development’s North Dakota Headquarters to proceed with improvement projects on Rutland Housing’s 4-plex at 207 First Street and on the 4-plex at 316 Ross Street.  The unit on First Street is slated to get new windows, roofing, siding and a new front door.  The unit on Ross Street is scheduled for new roofing and for new exterior doors.  Work on the improvement projects is expected to commence by mid-June.  The heating systems in both of these apartment houses were replaced with new, energy efficient dual systems earlier this year.  Rutland Housing also has plans for improvements at Unit #3, the 6-plex at 204 Dakota Street, and will proceed with that work as soon as funding is obtained.  Congratulations to Rutland Housing on being able to make these much needed improvements to the community’s apartment houses. Bert Siemieniewski, Rutland Housing’s manager, can be contacted at 724-3553.  Rutland Housing’s Board of Directors currently consists of: Delores Lysne, President; Bill Anderson, Vice-President; Carolyn Christensen, Secretary; and, Bert Siemieniewski, Treasurer/Manager.

The 2016 Relay For Life Tractorcade will start down Rutland’s Main Street at 9:00 a.m., sharp, on Saturday, June 4, according to the fund-raisers organizer, Jim Lunneborg of this community. More than 2 dozen antique, classic and just plain interesting tractors had pre-registered for the event as of Monday, May 23.  Preceding the start time, the American Legion Auxiliary will be serving rolls and coffee at the Rutland Seniors’ Center, and the Auxiliary will also be serving an afternoon lunch when the tractorcade returns to Rutland in the afternoon.  This year’s planned route will take the tractors and their drivers east and south of Rutland, past the Coteau des Prairies Lodge, and then west to Havana for dinner at Noon.  In the afternoon, the tour will return to Rutland in time for afternoon lunch.  Like the farm schedule of years gone by, breakfast is in the morning, lunch at mid-morning, dinner at Noon, lunch at mid-afternoon, supper at 6:00 p.m. or after the cows have been milked, whichever comes last, and an evening lunch, just before bedtime in order to make sure that the stomach has something to do while its owner is sleeping.  The Sargent County Relay For Life main event is scheduled for Friday, June 10, in Forman.  Headquarters will be on the Courthouse grounds.

District #26 Democratic-NPL Chairman Paul Anderson of Rutland reminds all who wish to participate in the Democratic Party’s Presidential candidate selection process that the District Caucus is scheduled to be held at 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, June 7, in the Milnor Community Center on Milnor’s Main Street.  Chairman Anderson urges all who intend to participate to arrive early, as Party rules require that only those who are present in the caucus site at 7:00 p.m. will be allowed to cast a ballot to select the 10 delegates and 10 alternates to attend the State Caucus in Bismarck on June 18.  Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton are battling it out all the way to the wire this year, and the contest will still be in doubt on June 7 when North Dakota Democrats will hold their District Caucuses.  North Dakota’s Republicans pledged most of their delegates to Texas Senator Ted Cruz at the Party’s State Convention at the beginning of April, but designated just enough uncommitted delegates to put Donald Trump over the top to secure the GOP nomination last week.  The Donald is playing the national media like a violin, dominating every news cycle with one story after another, some outrageous, and some merely zany.  As the late North Dakota Senator “Wild Bill” Langer used to say when attacked by the Fargo Fool’um, which was pretty much every day, “I don’t care what they write about me, just so long as they spell my name right.”  Langer dominated North Dakota’s media, and North Dakota’s politics, from the early 1930’s until his death in 1959.  Donald Trump is no Bill Langer, but he plays the media as well as Langer ever did.  If it was a violin, Trump would be a virtuoso.

County Auditor Pam Maloney reports that 1,000 Vote By Mail ballots for North Dakota’s June 14 Primary Election had been sent out to County voters as of Friday, May 27, and that 480 had been returned as of Tuesday, May 31.  Voters in Sargent County may vote by mail, or cast their ballot at the County Courthouse in Forman on Primary Election Day, Tuesday, June 14.  Primary voters will select candidates for Statewide and County offices to be elected at the General Election in November, and will also elect City Council and City Park Board members on June 14.  Voting by mail is easy, and can be done at the kitchen table.  No rush, no muss, no fuss.  For more information about Vote By Mail, call the Sargent County Auditor’s Office at 724-6241, extension #1.,

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 to patronize your local Post Office; don’t forget to keep the pressure on the U. S. Postal Service and the North Dakota Congressional delegation to save our Post Office; and, BE SURE TO VOTE!  Good men and women have died to secure that right for you.  Make sure that their sacrifice was not in vain.  Later.

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