News & Events

The Rooster Crows – May 19, 2017

Big wheels keep on turnin’; Big planters keep on churnin’; Rollin’, rollin’ rollin’ ‘cross the prairie!  The rattle and clank of rock rollers clattering across newly planted soybean fields is the signal that the 2017 spring planting season is nearing the finish line.  As of Tuesday, Mike Walstead reported that his corn planting was completed, and that he had about 1 day of soybean seeding yet to get done on his farm in Rutland Township.  Warmer weather has encouraged the germination, sprouting and emergence of plants in short order, and many cornfields are now covered with green and growing cornstalks that are several inches tall, and reaching for the sky.  Although Spring Wheat is no longer the dominant crop in this area, those fields that were planted to wheat appear to be supporting excellent stands that even the newly hatched broods of Giant Canada Geese haven’t been able to keep ahead of.  At this point, everyone is ready for a rain, including the geese, and Mother Nature delivered on Tuesday, May 16, with Paul Anderson’s electronic precipitation measuring device recording .47 of an inch, while Roger Pearson’s & Norbert Kulzer’s conventional gauges indicated .45 and .5 of an inch, respectively.  Northeast of Rutland, at the Mike Anderson farm, an inch of rain was reported on Tuesday, with .89 reported from the David Lunneborg farmstead a little further to the northeast. With Memorial Day only a little more than a week into the future, additional rainfall is almost, but not quite, a sure thing.

Longtime Rutland area farmer Bill Woytassek, now a citizen of Detroit Lakes MN, has been a resident of his old home town since Thursday, May 4, residing in his travel trailer in the Rutland RV Park.  Bill has been assisting his son and grandson, Jerry Woytassek and Andrew Woytassek, with Spring planting.  The broken shoulder he sustained last November has healed and Bill has regained full use of his left arm due to his disciplined therapy regimen.  Mary Woytassek arrived here from Detroit Lakes on Thursday, May 11, and the Woytasseks drove down to Aberdeen SD to attend the high school graduation of one of their granddaughters, the next to the youngest daughter of their son, Alan, on Saturday, May 13.  Mary reports that she keeps busy enjoying the company of grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

A special meeting of the Rutland City Council was held at 5:00 p.m. on Wednesday, May 10, in the Rutland Town Hall with the Mayor, City Auditor, and all 4 Aldermen present.  The primary purpose of the meeting was to decide whether the City should purchase a new mower tractor or make a major repair to the City’s existing machine.  The current John Deere tractor type mower is a 2010 model, and the mower deck had cracked and broken necessitating either a major repair or replacement. Mayor Narum reported to the Council that the tractor portion of the current rig is in good shape, starts easily and runs well.  As the current tractor is 7 years old, and is now in its 8th season of mowing, its trade-in value is low.  After considering estimates of the cost of acquiring a new tractor type mower, the Council approved the purchase of a new, heavier duty, deck for the current unit at a cost of approximately $1,800.00.  The other topic discussed by the Council was the cost of removing dead trees from the City’s boulevards, and from private property within the City.  The Council reaffirmed that use of the City’s Bobcat to remove branches and other debris from private property should be billed to the property owner, as has been the policy, although not always the practice, in the past.  The next regularly scheduled meeting of the Rutland City Council is set for 5:00 p.m. on Monday, June 5, in the Rutland Town Hall.

Nathan Berseth of Wahpeton, formerly of Colfax, stopped in Rutland for supper with County Commissioner Bill Anderson at The Lariat Bar on the evening of Thursday, May 11, following an evening meeting of the Sargent County Job Development Authority (JDA) at the Courthouse in Forman.  In addition to owning a plumbing business and other business interests in Richland County, as well as serving on the Richland County Commission, Mr. Berseth is an economic development consultant with Crossroads Community Advisers, and works with the Sargent County JDA on business development loan applications and other community development issues.  At the May 11 JDA meeting, participation was approved in 2 business development loans, one in Milnor and 1 in Forman.  At the present time, the Sargent County JDA is participating in business and economic development loans in the Milnor, Gwinner, Forman and Rutland communities, and is looking for opportunities to encourage economic expansion and job creation throughout the County.  When he resided in Colfax, Mr. Berseth was a friend and neighbor of Rutland natives John Lee and Shaun Jacobson.

The organizing committee for Uff-Da Day XXXIII met at 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, May 13, in the Nordland Lutheran Fellowship Hall.  Among the topics discussed were: Lefse production schedule; information letter to community members; Uff-Da Day events; and, emphasizing the ethnic heritage of the community.  A letter will be going out to members of the community at the end of May.  Committee chairperson Marcia Brakke also stated that the Uff-Da Day Facebook page is conducting a “Best Picture of Uff-Da Day 2016” contest.  Submission of suggestions for a new Uff-Da Day slogan such as, “Rommegrot!  It’s the breakfast of champions!” is also encouraged.  Uff-Da Day 2017 is set for Sunday, October 1, in Rutland.  Be there!

The members of the Nordland Lutheran Church congregation here held “Senior Recognition Sunday” on Sunday, May 14.  Tatum Wyum., daughter of Brad & Tracy Wyum of this community was recognized for her contributions to church, community and school activities during her school years.   Tatum is one of the members of Sargent Central High School’s Class of 2017.  Commencement exercises for Sargent Central will be at 2:00 p.m. on Sunday, May 28 at the Sargent Central Activities Center in Forman.  The Rutland community extends congratulations and best wishes to the 11 graduating Seniors, and to the teachers and parents who have guided them thus far on their journey through life.  Great challenges and opportunities are ahead of them, and this community extends congratulations and best wishes to them as they commence the next stage of their great adventure.  Tatum has been active and involved in her community throughout her growing up years, and she leaves her mark on Rutland, just as the Rutland community’s spirit has left its mark on her.  Wherever she goes, whatever she does, the beliefs and attitudes instilled in her during her years in “the little city that can” will help her to become a confident, contributing citizen, making life better for herself, her family and her community.  Way to go, Tatum!  You are now the captain of your own ship.

Rutland has another new resident, acquired the old-fashioned way.  Kaitlyn Shirley Mahrer was born at 8:05 p.m. on Monday, May 15, 2017, at Sanford Hospital in Fargo.  She is the daughter of Kyle and Kaia (Thorfinnson) Mahrer of this community.  Kaitlyn tipped the scales at 6 pounds 3 ounces, and stood 19 inches tall in her bare feet on her arrival.  Kaitlyn is a soprano, and can already hit high C.  She joins big brother Brody and big sisters Julia and Adalyn in the Mahrer home.  Welcome to Rutland, Kaitlyn.  Uff-da Day lefse production starts next week.

Cayuga native Randy Kiefer reports that he arrived at the Ransom County farm home of his sister and brother in law, Pam & Keith “Skeeter” Hoistad, on Thursday, May 4, at the conclusion of a 25-day bicycle ride of approximately 1,600 miles from his starting point at Blythe AZ.  Randy would have started out at his home in southern California, adding about 300 miles to the trip, but a neighbor was moving to Tucson, so Randy helped him move and got a ride to Blythe in the moving truck as his reward.  Randy is the youngest son of the late George “Pete” and Verna (Janish) Kiefer of Cayuga.  The Kiefer family owned the farm implement and hardware store business in Cayuga for more than 60 years.  Randy visited in Rutland on Monday evening, May 15, for a get together with old friends Paul Anderson and Bill Anderson of this community.  Randy states that his ride up to North Dakota took him up through Flagstaff and Kingman AZ, then through Monument Valley to Moab Utah and on into the mountains of Wyoming.  At Thermopolis WY Randy noticed that the weather forecast was calling for snow, and he had a 117-mile ride that climbed up to 9,000 feet in altitude to get to the top of the pass, so he put in some extra effort and made it to the top that night.  He spent the night at a lodge there, and the next day he rode down to Sheridan WY where he visited at the home of his niece, Michelle Hoistad.  That night there was 6 inches of new snow in Sheridan, and several feet of snow covered the pass that Randy had ridden his bike through the day before.  After a few days of rest, recuperation and bicycle repair at Sheridan, he rode through Belle Fourche SD, skirted the Black Hills and headed for the Missouri River.  On May 3 he rode 150 miles from Mobridge to Britton, and when he checked in at the motel in Britton he discovered that the manager was his cousin, Julie Janish.  “You know that you’re back in small town America when you’re still 40 miles from home and you discover that you’re related to the first person you meet, and you have a 2-hour conversation with the desk clerk between checking in and actually getting into your room.”  Randy rode up to the Hoistad farm northwest of Milnor on Thursday, May 4.  He has been helping out on the farm since then, and plans to attend the wedding of a nephew, the son of his sister, Paulette, near the Twin Cities this weekend.  Randy also states that he has a bicycle tour of northern Minnesota planned for early June, in the company of his regular riding partners, Cayuga native Don Isensee of Perham MN and Fargo native Dick Reis.  The 3 amigos, notorious in their own minds as “The Apple Dumpling Gang,” have participated in many long distance, endurance type bicycle rides throughout the U.S., Canada and Mexico, as well as in Europe and other locales.  Randy intends to Be in Cayuga for Memorial Day, and to begin his bike ride back to southern California around the 20th of June, give or take a day or two.

Claire Brakke drove down from Grand Forks on Monday, May 15 for a visit at the Jesse & Marcia Brakke home near Rutland.  Claire, accompanied by a very friendly German Shepherd/Red Heeler dog named Max, also visited other family members in the Rutland and Havana communities.  On Tuesday afternoon she assisted her grandpa, Bill Anderson, with some office paperwork, and on Wednesday morning she accompanied her grandma, Kathy Brakke, on a voyage of discovery to Donna Ruby’s shop in Milnor.  Claire completed her Junior year at the University of North Dakota on Thursday, May 11, and will be returning to the University for additional courses in Occupational Therapy this Fall.  She is also employed at a rehabilitation facility in Grand Forks.  Claire expects to be back in Rutland for Memorial Day on Monday, May 29.

Memorial Day observances in Rutland on Monday, May 29, will commence with military rites at the Nordland Cemetery 2½ miles southeast of town, at 10:15 a.m., followed by military rites at the Rutland Cemetery on the east edge of town at 10:30 a.m.  A program organized by the American Legion Auxiliary will be at 11:00 a.m. in the Rutland Town Hall, and Rutland’s annual Memorial Day community potluck dinner will immediately follow the program in the Rutland Town Hall.  Everyone is invited to attend one, some or all of the Memorial Day activities in Rutland on Monday, May 29.

Jim & Ione Lunneborg report that the 7th Annual Relay For Life Tractorcade will commence with coffee and “rolls to die for” served by the American Legion Auxiliary in the Rutland Seniors Center on Saturday, June 3.  At 9:00 a.m., Jim, on his Dad’s WD Allis-Chalmers tractor, will lead participants from Rutland to Silver Lake, then on to Forman for lunch at the Forman Golf Course and a tour of the Sargent County Museum, then back to Rutland for coffee & bars at the Seniors Center, again served by the American Legion Auxiliary.  Jim states that the destinations have been determined, but the exact routes will not be selected until just prior to the June 3 ride.  The Tractorcade is a fund raiser for the Sargent County Relay For Life’s campaign to fight cancer.  The Lunneborgs report that participants from North Dakota, Minnesota and South Dakota have already signed up for the event.  The main Sargent County Relay For Life fund raising event is scheduled to begin at Noon on Friday, June 23, on the County Courthouse grounds in Forman.

Meanwhile, on the national scene, there has been more intrigue, scandal and panicky excitement emanating from the White House in the past week than has been the case in the past half century.  Not since the Watergate scandal of the 1970’s has a President created so much trouble for himself and his political allies as the Donald has created with a cell phone and a Twitter account.  Which Tweet will prove to be the one that breaks the camel’s back and brings an administration, and the country, to its knees is not yet known, but the load is growing by the minute.  In the past week and a half the President has: fired the Director of the FBI for conducting an investigation into his campaign’s ties to Russia; passed top secret classified information to this country’s primary adversary, Russia, in the Oval Office; sent the White House staff out to lie about both occurrences; and, then pulled the rug out from under his own staff by making contradictory tweets and statements to the press.  Mr. Trump has been President for 17 weeks, and it seems like 17 years.  Well, only 191 weeks to go, if any of us last that long.

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 Uff-Da Day and Rutland Facebook pages 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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One Comment

  1. Jimmy Sjothun
    Posted May 20, 2017 at 9:56 am | Permalink

    I enjoy the rooster peoples last names I recognize first ones not any
    more, been gone to long.

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