News & Events

The Rooster Crows – March 31, 2017

Spring got her footing back this week, and the month that came in like a lion, with ferocious winds and cold temperatures, is living up to its traditional image by exiting like a lamb, calm, sunny and warm.  Local cattlemen have welcomed Spring’s arrival with open arms.  Sunshine and dry conditions are just what newborn calves need to get a good start, and that’s just what they’re getting.  Mac Pherson reported that as of Friday, March 24, his cows had given birth to 3 calves, but about 80 more should be arriving in the next few weeks.  Cam Gulleson disclosed that the Gulleson Farm & Ranch herd was producing calves at the rate of 20 per day as of Sunday, March 26, and Larry Erickson stated on Tuesday, March 28, that his cows had 12 calves on the ground with 50 more on the way.  No planting reports have been received as of the morning of Wednesday, March 29, but several local producers have indicated that they intend to start planting wheat within the week.  Jake Erickson of Jake’s Feed & Seed says that seed deliveries have been made to several local farmers, and that they are pawing the ground, ready to start planting as soon as field conditions allow.  The cycle goes on.  Spring is here.  Hope lives, and all things are possible!

Back in June of 2015, when the Rutland Veterans Memorial was dedicated, a temporary decorative eagle made of plastic was mounted at its peak.  Despite an arduous search by the Memorial Committee and many others, a suitable permanent, brass, eagle had not been found by the time of the dedication.  Committee members Ted & Joan Lee had checked out quite a few, but even the best ones looked more like a Rhode Island Red Rooster than an eagle, so the plastic version has been doing its duty for the past 2 years.  That will soon end, though, as a real, brass eagle has finally been acquired.  Ted & Joan Lee found the eagle during their recent vacation trip to Arizona.  Joan provided the following information about the discovery, and about the generosity of a stranger who is now a friend:

“Just a note to let you know, Ted & I purchased a eagle for the top of the Veterans’ Memorial while we were in Arizona.  It arrived yesterday & I am so excited to get it up on top of the Memorial.  It is very heavy, as it is solid brass, and a beautiful color.  The eagle’s wings are spread as if it is flying.  It has a 30-inch wingspan, is 24 inches tall, and is about 11 inches from beak to tail, it is mounted on a tree limb that is The part that will be used to fasten it on the top of the Monument.  I hope everyone likes it as much as we do.  It was such a coincidence, as Lenay & Harlis Langager (Lenay Langager is Ted’s cousin, one of the daughters of the late Halvor & Alta Lee of Tewaukon Township.) decided we should go to old downtown Scottsdale.  You may have been there, but anyway it has all the older shops, etc.  We parked right in front of this store & went in to browse.  The first thing we saw was a beautiful eagle.  Of course we thought it was just for us, but when we checked it out, it was not for outdoors.  So on we went to the shop next door, and there it was.  Exactly what we had been looking for.  This one was for outdoors, and as beautiful as the other one.  We asked about it immediately, and asked the price. Well, I thought the proprietor said $1500.00, and I didn’t  think that was too bad for such a beautiful piece of work, but I told her about our Veterans Memorial in Rutland, ND, and how we were a small community, but worked together to raise the money for the Memorial, and Ted described it, and we told her that we had been looking for two years, but just could not find an eagle for the top. So I asked if she could ship it to me & she said that would not be a problem.  So once again I asked about the cost & what the total would be with shipping.  She said just a minute I will go figure it out, and be right back.  Well were we in for a surprise.  When she came back she said the cost will be $539.75 with shipping, and it will be there in about a week. When we got out to the car, Harlis said, “I thought she said $1500.00,” I said, “So did I,” so I guess it pays to be from ND & wanting an Eagle for your community’s Veterans Memorial. Anyway it is a very nice EAGLE!!!!  I called her today and told her we had received the eagle, and it was in perfect shape.  Our benefactor, the proprietor of the shop in Scottsdale is named  RASHA, and her shop is: Royal Palace Jewelry, 7237 E.Main Street, Scottsdale, AZ 85251.  The shop features Belgium Diamonds & Jewelry, Fine Indian Custom & Designer articles, Diamond, Gold and SilverArts.”

If you happen to be in Scottsdale, be sure to stop in at Royal Palace Jewelry to thank Rasha for her patriotism and generosity.  Thanks to Ted and Joan Lee for their persistence in the search for a suitable eagle, and for their report on the success of their efforts.  The new eagle, named Rasha, will be affixed to the top of the Veterans Memorial in the near future.

Joe Breker stopped in at The Lariat for coffee and conversation on the morning of Friday, March 24, and reported that the gourmet dinner served at the Coteau des Prairies Lodge on the evening of Wednesday, March 22, drew a full house.  The seven-course dinner was prepared by chef Amy Thielen of Park Rapids MN, who also hosts a nationally syndicated TV cooking show.  Chef Thielen had presented a three-day course on cooking using locally obtained foods prior to the preparation and serving of Wednesday’s event.  Another gourmet dinner, this one consisting of five courses prepared by chef Steven Schultz of The Toasted Frog in Fargo, will be served at The Lodge on the evening of Thursday, April 6.  For more information about upcoming events at the Coteau des Prairies Lodge, check out The Lodge’s internet web site at, or give General Manager Olivia Stenvold a call at 701-680-1175.  Joe also reported that he and Patty had recently returned from a trip to visit family and friends in Texas and Mexico.  In Mexico, they visited at the home of an old friend, Roy Garza, who has frequently worked on the Breker farm, as well as in a number of communities in the area, including Rutland, during the past several Summer seasons.  The Garza farm home is situated west and north of Monterey, Mexico, almost straight west of McAllen, Texas, states Joe.  The region has traditionally been cattle country, but the ranchers there have a continual struggle with the sagebrush, mesquite and other woody species that thrive in the semi-arid conditions, doing battle with bulldozers and rippers to remove stalks and roots to give the pasture grass a chance to get started.  Mr. Garza has also produced high value irrigated crops such as tomatoes and other vegetables on his farm, but these crops are more labor intensive,  and Roy told Joe that his biggest problem is obtaining labor.  That’s right, a labor shortage in Mexico!  Knock down that wall, Mr. Trump!  Thar’s jobs in them thar Mexican hills!

Steve & Sheila Wyum arrived home on the evening of Saturday, March 25, at the conclusion of a 2 week tour up and down the Mississippi River Valley, to New Orleans and back. Steve reports that they took their time on the trip, taking some side trips, driving on some secondary roads, and stopping at several sites to see the sights.  One stop that Steve thought was quite impressive was the William Jefferson Clinton Presidential Library in Little Rock AR.  Another stop was at St. Joseph MO, where they toured the restored headquarters of “The Pony Express,” where brave young men on fast horses started on the route to deliver the U. S. Mail from the end of the rail lines at St. Joe to Sacramento CA back in 1860. It took about 10 days to get a letter from Missouri to California on horseback 157 years ago, about the same time that it takes to get a letter from Rutland to Cayuga these days. Steve said that he looked for someone in management to ask if The Pony Express would be interested in taking over operation of the U. S. Postal Service’s Fargo office, but the guys who made it work back in 1860 have been retired for quite a while now.  New Orleans was also interesting, Steve reports, even though Mardi Gras and Fat Tuesday are long gone.  They don’t need much of an excuse to have a party and hold a parade down there, he stated. There was a huge parade on St. Patrick’s Day to honor the Irish, and that parade was followed by one organized by the Italians just to have an excuse for a party.  Steve said that he and Sheila really enjoyed all of the Dixieland jazz music performed in the clubs on Bourbon Street, and he was almost inspired to dust off his old trumpet from his days in the Sargent Central High School Marching Band and start making music again.  Almost, but not quite.   “It’s always fun to take a trip,” says Steve, “but the best part of any trip is getting home.”

CORRECTION:  In last week’s column it was erroneously reported that Rick Bosse had undergone a sleep apnea test in Britton SD.  Rick actually had the testing done in Fargo, and Sherry, Rick’s wife, stayed overnight at the home of her sister and brother-in-law in Fargo, not Britton.  Rick has been familiar with the streets and side streets of Britton since High School days, and he is unlikely to get lost there, even in the early morning hours after a sleep apnea test.  Apologies to Rick and Sherry for the error.

Rutland natives Bill & Mary Woytassek, now residents of Detroit Lakes MN, stopped in at The Lariat for coffee and conversation with old friends on the morning of Tuesday, March 28.  The Woytasseks usually take a trip to the southwest for a portion of the winter months, but had to forego that tradition this year, Bill reports.  Shortly after Thanksgiving he had slipped on the ice, fallen and suffered a broken left shoulder, requiring them to spend most of the winter doctoring in Fargo.  Bill said that the break was quite painful, and he said a few words in Polish when it occurred.  He expects to be ready to help with Spring’s work on the farm, though, and states that he has been doing therapy for the shoulder by repeatedly lifting a 12 oz. cylindrical object and setting it down again.  He keeps on repeating the motion until the cylinder is empty.  Sounds like great therapy.

Mike Kulzer drove down from Fargo on the morning of Wednesday, March 29, and stopped in at The Lariat to get updated on current events in the old home town.  Mike stated that he had been at the Courthouse in Forman earlier in the morning for a meeting with the County Tax Director.  He said that the Tax Director, his cousin, Sandy Hanson, and the folks working with her were very friendly and helpful.  The new valuation on his commercial property in Rutland will not be going down, Mike stated, but he feels better about it now.  Sargent County, along with several other North Dakota counties of similar size, had contracted with the Vanguard appraisal service to appraise commercial property within the County.  Agricultural lands and residential property had been subjected to the reappraisal process a few years ago, and the commercial property within the County was the last to be gone through.  Appraising commercial property in smaller, rural communities is more difficult because there are few comparable sales to refer to.  The Iowa based Vanguard company has had a great deal of experience throughout the upper Midwest, however, and has developed the data base to obtain a more accurate appraisal of commercial properties in this region.  According to Mike, the process and the result seemed to be fair, even if it did put a higher valuation on his building than it had in previous years.  From Rutland, Mike was intending to travel to Aberdeen SD to meet up with his eldest son, Chad, who planned to be meeting with business clients there on Thursday and Friday.  Mike states that he and Diane were so busy in Fargo this past Winter that they did not make their usual vacation trip to Las Vegas.  He states that he has his memories of previous trips to enjoy, though, and shared a story with The Assembled Wise Men about an experience in a hot tub at their Las Vegas timeshare several years ago.  Ask Mike to tell you about it the next time you see him.

Some upcoming events in the Rutland community include: Renee Cramton’s birthday on April Fool’s Day, Saturday, April 1, all day; Rutland City Council meeting at 5:00 p.m. on Monday, April 3, at the Rutland Town Hall; Gourmet dinner at 6:00 p.m. on Thursday, April 6, at the Coteau des Prairies Lodge; Palm Sunday service at 9:00 a.m. on Sunday, April 9, at Nordland Lutheran Church in Rutland; Rutland Community Club meeting at 7:00 p.m. on Monday, April 10, at the Rutland Town Hall; and, UFF-DA DAY XXXIII all day on Sunday, October 1, only 6 months from now, in Rutland.

Meanwhile, on the national scene, Trump supporters are pleased that there are still 198 weeks remaining in his Presidency, and Trump opponents are rejoicing that there are only 198 weeks remaining in his Presidency.  Well, at least everyone is happy with 198 weeks to go!

That’s the news from Rutland for this week.  For additional information about what’s happening 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.  Don’t forget to patronize your local Post Office, and remember 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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