News & Events

The Rooster Crows – December 15, 2017

True to his word, Santa Claus swept into the Rutland Town Hall at 5:00 on the afternoon of Saturday, December 9, to take part in the community’s 72nd annual Santa Claus Day. Half an hour after activities began, sleigh bells announced the arrival of Santa Claus, himself, at the front door of the Town Hall. Santa brought mild temperatures, into the 30’s, with him this year, although the sharp northwest wind that accompanied him and his team had a raw bite to it, just to remind all in attendance that it was 20 degrees below zero for Santa’s visit last year. Santa Claus Day proceeded with games and crafts for kids; BINGO games with cash prizes for each game; and, a soup & sandwich supper served by the Rutland Community Club. Those in attendance also signed up for a drawing for Christmas turkeys donated by local businesses and individuals. While other events proceeded, Santa listened to Christmas requests and posed for photos with children and adult admirers, alike. Santa’s elf assistant made sure that each child received a bag filled with candy and other small gifts prepared by the Rutland Community Club for the event. After the last BINGO game was played, the drawing for Santa Claus Day Christmas Turkeys and hams donated by local businesses was held.  Recipients of Christmas Turkeys and hams were: Eli Olson; Charlie Anderson; MaryAnn Thornberg; Rylee Roney; Gaven Christianson; DJ Allen; Kaia Mahrer; Delores “Pee-Wee” Breker; Lilith Pavek; Hadley Bladow; Rita Preble; Lyndsee Pherson; Sylvan Carlson; Braylon Wyum; Tracy Haussler; Ann Erickson; Avery Woytassek; Dawn Mahrer; Janice Christensen; Carol Fridgen; Phyllis Erickson; Diana Anderson; Patti Dockter; Mark Wyum; Emily Anderson; Kellen Dockter; Diane Smith; Paul Anderson; Tony Banish; Larry Christensen; Kylie Ceroll; Bill Anderson; Shane Jensen; Dana Bosworth; Leonard Heinen; Shane Breker; Abbie Erickson; Chelsey Seeley; Doris Hoistad; Polly Rohrbach; Hal Nelson; Samantha Stenvold; Jimmy Fust; Lucy Mahrer; Marcia Brakke; Roger Pearson; Bert Siemieniewski; and, Tanya Hamilton.  Local businesses and individuals who donated turkeys, hams and other gifts for Santa Claus Day were: Jake’s Feed & Seed; The Grainery & Bunkhouse; Rutland Oil Company; Farmers Union Insurance; Sargent County Bank; Mayor Ron Narum; Andy Hoflen; Joe’s Ag Supply; Joe’s Fertilizer; Lariat Bar; Waloch Johnson Insurance; Dave Bladow Enterprises; Wild Rice Air Ag; R2 Inc.; Cal Jacobson Enterprises; Bernard Mahrer Construction; Oleo Acres; U-Stor-It of Rutland; Jim & Ione Lunneborg; Nelson Electric; Bill Anderson; Jerry Sapa Construction; McLaen’s Service; The Bird’s Nest; The Old Parsonage; Alley Cuts; Volunteer Firemen of the Rutland-Cayuga Fire Department; and, the Coteau Des Prairies Lodge. Joe & Patty Breker donated the beautiful 20’ blue spruce Christmas Tree that brightens Rutland’s Main Street. His task performed, Santa and his helpers then returned to their North Pole Christmas Headquarters, via the Eden SD home of their special friends, Mr. & Mrs. LaRon Knebel, to load up the sleigh for Christmas Eve and make a final check of the “naughty and nice” list. Before his departure, Santa Claus pledged to return to Rutland next December for Rutland’s 73rd Annual Santa Claus Day, and reminded all that they should be nice all year long, and naughty not at all. “And we heard him exclaim, AS he drove out of sight, HAPPY CHRISTMAS TO ALL, AND TO ALL, A GOOD NIGHT!”

There was “Standing Room Only at Nordland Lutheran Church at 10:30 on the morning of Sunday, December 10, as parents, grandparents and friends gathered for the Nordland Sunday School Christmas Program. With songs, costumes and dialogue, and the assistance of teachers and volunteer helpers, the children portrayed the Christmas Story that all have heard before, but never tire of hearing. The following report was received from program director Tanya Hamilton, “Our program was titled “The Saviors Birth.” Narrators- Devonte Allen and Gabi Christianson; Joseph- Brody Mahrer; Mary-Maddy Erickson; Inn Keepers- Kaycee Hamilton, Whitney Mahrer, and Greta Bladow; Angels-Charlize Willprecht, Hadley Bladow, Ashleigh Ceroll, Lucy Mahrer, Kylie Ceroll, Julia Mahrer, Lilith Pavek, Brooklyn Pherson, and Paislee Pherson; Shepherds- Gaven Christianson and Jackson Jochim; Wise Men-Loden Jochim, Krosby Willprecht, and Max Hamilton; Donkey-Carl McLaen; Sheep-Sophie Erickson; Cow-Audrey Anderson; and, Camel-Cohen Jensen. They were under the direction of Tanya Hamilton with assistance from Jen Christianson, Marcia Brekke, Samantha Gillespie, Dawn Mahrer, and Emily Hamilton; Costumes-Ann Erickson and Phyllis Wyum; Music-Kathy Wyum, Josie Hamilton and Katie Woytassek; Props-Ann Erickson and Ione Pherson; and, Ushers-Fletcher Willprecht and Jaylin Fulin-Ross. Jaylin Fulin-Ross also read the Prayers of Intercession, and did a great job.  Communion was served by Rev. Michael Buller, Abby Erickson and Kenny Hamilton.” Thanks to Tanya for the report. A good, old-fashioned pot-luck dinner served in the Nordland Fellowship Hall followed the program.

Mr. Emerson Buller of St. James MN accompanied his son, Rev. Michael Buller of Wahpeton, to Sunday worship services at Nordland Lutheran Church in Rutland and Trinity Lutheran Church in Havana on the morning of Sunday, December 3. Mr. Buller is employed at a poultry processing plant in St. James, and had been visiting at the Wahpeton ND home of his son and daughter-in-law on the weekend of December 2 & 3. A new grandchild is on the way, he states, so he expects to be back by Christmas to greet the new arrival.

Kathy Brakke reports that she will have The Old Parsonage at 217 First Street in Rutland open for Christmas shoppers on Friday & Saturday, December 15 & 16, and on Friday & Saturday, December 22 & 23. Regular hours are 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. on Fridays, and from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on Saturdays. Kathy reports that The Old Parsonage has an excellent inventory of unique and interesting items on hand for the discriminating shopper. Patrons can also schedule a shopping expedition at The Old Parsonage by appointment.  Just give Kathy a call at 680-9831 to set up a time.  There’s something for everyone, even a “Man Cave,” at The Old Parsonage.

The crew from M & S Construction of Forman, composed of Kevin Maly, Evan Maly and Matt Payne, completed installation of the new exterior siding on Rutland Housing’s 6-plex apartment house at 204 Dakota Street on Friday, December 8. Kevin and crew had taken advantage of the mild weather that had prevailed until the morning of Monday, December 4, to get the siding installed on the north, west and south sides of the building, but had to tough it out in the wind and cold of Monday afternoon through Friday morning to get the project completed. The new “Smart Siding” is an attractive shade of gray that is complemented by white trim around the doors and windows. A ¼ inch layer of Styrofoam insulation, and Tyvec building wrap were applied to the building prior to the installation of the siding. Materials were supplied by Riverside Building Center of Lisbon, successful bidder on the project.  Still to come on the 6-plex is the installation of “split” units to provide air conditioning and supplemental heating to the individual apartments, with the equipment and expertise to be supplied by Jacobson Plumbing, Heating & Excavating of Rutland. Work is expected to commence on that portion of Rutland Housing’s improvement project “sometime after the First of the New Year,” according to information received by Rutland Housing’s Manager, Bert Siemieniewski. Rutland Housing, Inc., a North Dakota non-profit corporation organized by the Rutland Community Club back in 1971, owns 3 apartment houses in Rutland at: 207 First Street; 316 Ross Street; and, 204 Dakota Street. The new siding at 204 Dakota Street is the most recent in a series of modernizations, upgrades and improvements that have been made to all 3 structures since 2015.  Back in 1971, the original directors of Rutland Housing, Inc. were: Rudy Anderson; Aldon Donaldson; Earl Anderson; Norbert Kulzer; and, Skip Sjothun.  Current officers and directors of Rutland Housing, Inc., are: Delores Lysne, President; Bill Anderson, Vice-President; Carolyn Christensen, Secretary; and, Bert Siemieniewski, Treasurer and Manager. For information about Rutland Housing, call Manager Bert Siemieniewski at 724-3553.

On Thursday, December 7, an e-mail message was received from Cayuga native Randy Kiefer reporting on the progress he is making on his current bicycle tour through Southeast Asia. Randy, a 1967 graduate of Sargent Central High School, is a cycling enthusiast who has made long distance rides throughout North America and Europe, and he is now adding a big chunk of Asia to his itineraries. Randy’s parents were the late George “Pete” and Verna Kiefer of Cayuga.  Following is the report he sent:

“Greetings To You, I am on a “normal” computer in the Chiang Mai library, so taking this opportunity to send a shotgun note to all of you. To make this somewhat more interesting, I would have liked to include a photo or two, but do not have the phone to computer cable -sorry. Since 7 Nov my sister Pamela and I were in Singapore for 5 days, with the remainder of the time between Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai in northern Thailand. Other than walking the alley ways for beer and pineapple, two highlights were the, mud baths, river washing, and elephant feeding outing, and the day trip to the Golden triangle (I trust that most of you are old enough to have knowledge of this 3-country poppy growing area.) Part of that adventure was a side trip across the Mekong River for some market time in Laos. I bought some chopsticks. I said farewell to Pamela at the end of Nov. After her departure I stayed a few days in Bangkok before taking a 5-day tour of Bhutan – sweet indeed. For background, Bhutan, to retain its culture, is not big on outside interests influencing its traditional way of life.  To that end it is selective as to who it allows in the country. Okay, sorta. It costs around $200 a day, that you have to pay in advance. So basically, the backpack crowd gives this place a miss. Part of the benefit of that expenditure is that it covers all hotels, meals, guide, car, and driver for the number of days you reserve. The hotels are nice, the food good and healthy (great for a part-time veggie like me), and the culture ever-so interesting. A point in fact, the highest un-climbed mountains in the Himalayas are in Bhutan. They consider the peaks sacred, and therefore, hands (actually feet) -off. They are all about Buddhism, which includes a lot of suffering.  They consider being alive as part of suffering. During discussions with my guide I tried to get my hands around the whole “suffering” thingy, but it didn’t work so well. Okay, climbs in the Pyrenees make me suffer, but then there is always the downhill, so the suffering vanishes (mostly).  At any rate, the Bhutan side trip was well worth the time. So am now in Chiang Mai revisiting some of the places Pamela and I enjoyed.  I also made the final payment on my new/used ride (out the door for $450.00), and will start riding tomorrow. Will head northwest to Pai, then south along the Myanmar border, then east to Cambodia with a stop at Angkor Wat. Then Laos, and Viet Nam. And oh ya – in Viet Nam there is the distinct possibility I will connect with one Snussville resident, Mr. Bill (the Rooster Crows) Anderson. More on connecting with Bill in February later. To my knowledge none of you are directly effected by the California fire disaster, lucky for you, but I feel for those in the northern Los Angeles metro area. The rains cannot start soon enough… So, I wish all of you well. The best of health and good cheers now, and during the up-coming holiday season.  Regards, Randy.”

Thanks to Randy for the report. His many friends here extend an enthusiastic “Bon Voyage” and Merry Christmas” to him as he explores the exotic and inscrutable Orient.

Shawn Klein, Manager of the Sargent County Bank’s Rutland Station, has invited all of the Bank’s patrons in this community to a Christmas Open House at the Bank’s Rutland Station on Friday, December 15. In addition to her usual friendly and efficient service, Shawn is also providing Christmas cookies, hot cider and coffee to all Bank patrons who stop by. On behalf of the entire staff of the Sargent County Bank at all of its locations: Forman; Milnor; Gwinner; Lisbon; and, Rutland, Shawn extends a cheerful “Merry Christmas” to all.

The Rutland Community Club met at 5:00 p.m. on Monday, December 11, at the Rutland Town Hall. The financial report indicated that the Community Club had started out 2017 with a little more than $20,000 on hand; that it had expended approximately $20,000 on community projects throughout the year; that its fund-raising efforts had brought in approximately $20,000 during the year; and, that it is ending the year with a balance of approximately $20,100 on hand and available for future projects. Club members reviewed Santa Claus Day #72, held on Saturday, December 9, and it was decided to award more hams and fewer turkeys at next year’s event. Katie McLaen reviewed the recently completed “Freezer Meals” and “Kids In The Kitchen” programs sponsored by the Community Club, and the consensus was that both programs had good participation, were very worthwhile, and should be sponsored again. Upcoming community events, including: the 23rd Annual Rudy Anderson Memorial Pinochle Tournament on Saturday, February 3, 2018; the American Legion Super Bowl Biscuits & Gravy Breakfast on Sunday, February 4, 2018; The Rutland Sportsmen’s Club’s Annual Great Northern Pike Fish Fry on Friday, March 2, 2018; the Rutland Community Club’s Annual Supper & Play on the 3rd weekend of March; Memorial Day on the last Monday in May; and, the 2nd Annual Community Block Party to be held at the beginning of June; were discussed. It was also decided to hold a “Family Fun Night in January or early February of 2018.  Katie McLaen will be in charge of the arrangements for Family Fun Night. Paul Anderson reported that he is checking on one more possible alternative prior to ordering the new electronic bulletin board for the community. No report was available on the acquisition of new card tables for use in the Town Hall, but the purchase of new tables had been authorized at the Club’s November meeting. The next regular meeting of the Rutland Community Club is scheduled for 5:00 p.m. on Monday, January 8, in the Rutland Town Hall. Officers of the Community Club are: Rachel Olson, President; Bonnie Anderson, Vice-President; Andrea Erickson, Secretary; Hal Nelson, Treasurer; Katherine McLaen, Director; and, Marcia Brakke, Director.

Steven “Stitch” Preble of this community has been hospitalized at Sanford Hospital in Fargo, at its facility on North Broadway, since Tuesday, December 5. Steve reports that he is recuperating from the effects of an electrolyte imbalance. As of Tuesday, December 12, he expected to be released from the Hospital before the end of the week. Steve’s many friends in Rutland wish him a speedy recovery and return to his home here.

Quite a few snowbirds have already flown south for the Winter, and more will be heading for warmer climes right after the Christmas and New Year holidays. Sargent County folks like each other’s company wherever they are, however, and get together for coffee and conversation at their Winter roosts, too. The following report of the most recent Sargent County Breakfast held in the Phoenix-Mesa area was received from Curt Larson on Monday, December 11: “Once again the Sargent County “winter visitors” met for their monthly gathering at Golden Corral, on Monday, December 11, 2017. Daytime temperatures are still in the upper 70’s; nights are in the upper 40’s. We will be enjoying a whole week of sunshine with no rain. Yearly rainfall is still below average. Luckily, sand and rock doesn’t burn; unlike the horrendous fires in brush and trees of southern California, which has been so devastating to the residents there. It’s hard to imagine what they are going through, losing everything they own. This month’s attendees were: Larry & Janet Bartz; Al Ciota & Clarice Orhdahl; Jim & Kathryn Gaukler; Carolyn Hopewell; Curt & Renee Larson; Orvis & Alphie Pearson; and Donna Rolfe. Donna’s maiden name was Wohler; I think she told me that she is from the Cayuga area. Anyway, some of this column’s readers may remember her. I believe she lives here full time now. We always welcome newcomers. I am sure we will have a much larger turnout after Christmas, when many more Sargent County residents will need a break from the cold.  I asked a few people for their early winter snow storm stories; most thought they had stories, they just couldn’t remember them. Most seniors remember 50 years ago, but can’t remember what they did yesterday; one of the hazards of growing older, I guess. Regardless, all those present enjoyed the usual great Golden Corral food. However, it’s hard to lose weight with all the delicious choices. Conversations were lively, and all enjoyed the time to get reacquainted. Next month’s gathering will be on Monday, January 8, 2018; same place, same time: 9:00am. Golden Corral is on N. Power Road near McKellips Rd., Mesa. Hope to see more people in January. Until then, keep smiling.  Curt.” Thanks to Curt for the report, and best wishes to all those who will be spending Christmas in their southern home away from home. See you in the Spring!

Meanwhile, on the international scene, the President has managed to offend, upset and anger both friend and foe alike with his recent decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capitol city of the nation of Israel. The President signed a waiver, though, delaying implementation of the decision until a new American Embassy can be built and other details ironed out, a process that may take a decade, or longer. Jim Lunneborg reports that he recently received an e-mail from his brother-in-law, Tom Thayer, a native of Brampton, with information that the President’s action may have local implications, as well. According to Tom, buried in the “fine print” of the President’s declaration concerning Jerusalem is a paragraph in which he recognizes Brampton as the County Seat of Sargent County. Authorities are keeping a watchful eye out for demonstrators in Straubville, Dunbar and Ransom City. Well, not to worry.  the Israelis and the Palestinians will have to make peace and become friends before construction of the new Courthouse in Brampton can commence.  Don’t hold your breath! As of Friday, December 15, there will be 46 weeks down and only 162 to go until January 20, 2021. For now, “Peace On Earth, Good Will To Mankind,” may be a stretch, but it’s only unattainable if mankind quits seeking it.

Well, that’s the news from Rutland for this week. Due to events elsewhere in America, The Rooster Crows will close this week with these words from a well known Christmas Carol, “Then rang the bells, so strong and deep, ‘God is not dead, nor does He sleep; the wrong shall fail, the right prevail, with Peace On Earth, Good Will To Men.’” It is good to know that America has not been forsaken, and that, even in the midst of unmitigated ignorance, irrational fear and corrosive bigotry, common sense, common decency and sweet hope can still prevail. Thank you, Alabama!  Merry Christmas!  Later.

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