News & Events

The Rooster Crows – January 12, 2018

The January thaw lifted temperatures and spirits, beginning with a rise out of the below Zero cellar on Friday, January 5. The mercury registered highs near or above the freezing mark on Sunday and Monday, January 7 & 8, and topped out at 37 above on Tuesday, January 9. As January thaws go, it wasn’t much, but it will do until a better one comes around.

Last week, on Thursday, January 4, as Rutland and the rest of Sargent County were just beginning to get a reprieve from sub-zero conditions, Janet Bradbury, ensconced for the Winter at the Warren Ranch just southeast of Rapid City SD, sent the following message to friends here: “…it is now 42 degrees here. I spent the morning out taking pictures and was glad I didn’t add snow pants to my wardrobe because I was sweating by the time I got home. Supposed to be near 50 by Saturday, before cooler. Was sorting old family pictures yesterday and found one where there were 3 vehicles in our yard at Rutland and Curt was blowing snow way high, the pile just east of our door being as high as the deck. After I got over the shakes, I covered up with a blanket and reached for a hot mulled wine… Again, so sorry to be forced to provide this report.”  Well, it’s too bad for Janet that it is so warm out in the west. Fifty above in January may give a person gloating rights, but it’s surviving 25 below, not counting the wind chill, that gives us northerners bragging rights.

Members of Bergman-Evenson Post #215 of the American Legion met at 7:00 p.m. on Thursday, January 4, at the Legion Hall/Rutland Fitness Center. The following information was provided by Post Commander Larry Christensen: “Members present included: Andy Harris; Roger Pearson; Roger Nelson; Richard Lysne; Doug Olstad; Ted Lee; and, Larry Christensen. The Adjutant’s Report showed that $3375.63 was on hand for Post projects as of December 31, 2017. In unfinished Business, plans were finalized for the Super Bowl Biscuits and Gravy Breakfast/Brunch that is scheduled to be served from 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. on Super Bowl Sunday, February 4, in the Rutland Town Hall. Post member Mike Pyle volunteered to order the ingredients and supervise the preparation of the menu items which include: biscuits; gravy; sausage; scrambled eggs; juice; and, coffee. Membership Dues for 2018 were discussed, and potential members will be contacted. In new business, the Raffle that had been planned for February has been postponed until a later date. The Post has acquired a gas ice auger that will be one of the raffle prizes. Post members decided to purchase 20 baseball style caps embroidered with the American Legion emblem for sale to members. The baseball style caps will replace the old garrison covers that have been in use by Legion members for the past century. Adjutant Doug Olstad reported that the Post had received a thank you from the William E. Smith family, and a monetary donation from the Havana Legion Post in appreciation for participating in the funeral and graveside military rites for Mr. Smith back in November. The late Mr. Smith had long been active in American Legion programs throughout the area, and was a past Commander of the 10th District. Members decided that meetings held by Bergman-Evenson Post #215 during the remainder of the winter will be held during daylight hours. Current officers of Bergman-Evenson Post #215 are: Larry Christensen, Commander; Tom Manley, Vice-Commander; Doug Olstad, Adjutant; Ted Lee, Chaplain; and, Calvin Jacobson, Sergeant-At-Arms. The next meeting of Post #215 will be held at the call of the Commander.

Joel Susag returned to his home in Rutland on Friday, January 5. Joel had been visiting at the homes of his sister, Sandra, and brother, Ron, in Las Vegas NV, and at the home of his brother, Ivan, at Florence AZ, since December 18. He reports that it’s nice to be home, but he has no regrets about missing the 25 below temperatures that prevailed over the Christmas and New Year’s holidays.

Rev. Michael Buller of Wahpeton has been conducting Sunday worship services at Nordland Lutheran Church in Rutland and Trinity Lutheran Church at Havana since early November. This past Sunday, though, Rev. Buller had to call in a replacement, as he was taking the day off to welcome a new member to his family. Benjamin Thomas Buller was born to Rev. Michael Buller and Rev. Erica Buller at 4:39 a.m.on Sunday, January 7, 2018. It was reported that Benjamin weighed in at 9 pounds 2 ounces. He will be making his home in Wahpeton with older brother, Henry, and his parents. Nordland’s Church Council President Ted Lee filled in for Pastor Buller on Sunday morning, and by all accounts did a mighty fine job on the occasion of his debut in the pulpit. Commenting from his winter retreat in Arizona, former Nordland & Trinity Pastor Curt Larson observed, “Ted is new at this. It takes a while for a Preacher to build up his fan base.” Just goes to show that Benjamin and Theodore are neither too young nor too old to embark on a new adventure.

This community was saddened on the morning of Monday, January 8, when word was received here that a longtime member of the Rutland community, June A. Pherson, had departed this life at the Four Seasons Healthcare Center in Forman. June had attained the age of 80 years, 6 months and 23 days at the time of her death. The funeral for June A. Pherson will be at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, January 13, 2018, at the Nordland Lutheran Church of Rutland. Rev. Ivy Schulz of Gwinner will officiate, and interment will be in the Rutland Cemetery. Price Funeral Chapel of Britton & Forman is in charge of arrangements. Visitation will be from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. on Friday, January 12, 2018 at the church, concluding with a 7:00 p.m. prayer service. Condolences may be directed to the family in care of Deb Stenvold,193rd Ave. NE, Lidgerwood ND 58053. The Rutland community extends its condolences to the family and friends of June Pherson, a dedicated, hard-working farm wife, mother and household manager who gave her all for her family and her community. A more extensive article on June’s life will be available next week.

A little winter weather doesn’t slow down community improvements in Rutland. Buskohl Construction of Milnor was installing several new windows at 301 First Street on Monday & Tuesday, January 8 & 9. The house was originally built by Robert Bagley, the Great Northern Railway’s first agent in Rutland, back in 1887, and the Buskohl crew has discovered square nails in boards with John R. Jones inscribed on them. The John R. Jones Lumberyard was established in Rutland when the railroad arrived in October of 1886, and stood where the Rutland RV Park is today, on the south side of Front Street, facing the railroad track. The work on “The Bagley House” is being done by John Buskohl, Dillon Odegard and Spencer Schutt. Working on older buildings is like a lesson in history, and some research on Wikipedia brought out the information that square nails were in common use from the early 16th Century up to the end of the 19th Century, when “wire nails,” those in use today, replaced them. Wire nails were invented in France in 1860.

Local carpenter Jerry Sapa began interior renovation work on apartment #4 in the Rutland Housing 6-plex at 204 Dakota Street on Tuesday, January 9. The work will include kitchen cabinets, renovation and repairs in the bathroom and replacement of floor coverings. Rutland Housing Manager Bert Siemieniewski reports that apartments are being renovated as finances allow. Officers of Rutland Housing, Inc., are: Delores Lysne, President; Bill Anderson, Vice-President; Carolyn Christensen, Secretary; and, Bert Siemieniewski, Treasurer/Manager. For additional information about Rutland Housing’s apartments, contact Manager Bert Siemieniewski at 724-3553.

The Rutland City Council met at 5:00 p.m. on Monday, January 8, in the Rutland City Hall with Mayor Ron Narum; Auditor Deb Banish; and, Aldermen Delores Lysne; Rodney Erickson; and, Bert Siemieniewski; present. Alderman Mike Mahrer was absent. Also attending the meeting was Rutland citizen Bill Anderson. The following report was provided by City Auditor Deb Banish: “The Council approved the application for the Abatement or Refund of Taxes for 2017 to R2, Inc., due to the property being improperly assessed for the railroad spur which is no longer on the property – Railway Addition, Lot 4, Block 1, 16,449.56 square feet. Valuation changed from $9,000 to $1,500. The Council designated the Sargent County Bank as the official depository for funds received by the City of Rutland. The Council approved training and travel reimbursement for the City Auditor to attend the North Dakota League of City’s March Madness 2018 workshop for elected and appointed officials in Bismarck. The Council authorized the City Auditor to proceed with records disposal in accordance with NDCC 54-46-12, with a final disposal record to be presented to the Council. The Council accepted & approved the December 2017 Financial reports as presented. After reviewing and approving the City’s bills, the Council adjourned. The next regular meeting of the Rutland City Council is scheduled for 5:00 p.m. on Monday, February 5, in the Rutland City Hall.

The Rutland Community Club held its regular monthly meeting at 6:30 p.m. on Monday, January 8, at the Rutland Town Hall. The treasurer’s report showed that approximately $20,500 is on hand for community projects. The Club received a report from Katherine McLaen on the cost of new floor covering and baseboards in the Town Hall kitchen. The cost of materials was estimated to be $2,305.00, including the heavy-duty floor covering. The Club is Also considering the cost of upgrading the electrical service in the Hall and utilizing the basement space beneath the stage. Paul Anderson reported that he is still investigating the various electronic billboard signs available for the community. Acquisition of an electronic bulletin board has been discussed for several years, and was authorized in July of 2017. Members discussed a proposed Rutland Café re-opening project. It was reported that “Family Fun Night “ is set to be held from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. on Sunday, February 11, in the Rutland Town Hall. The next meeting of the Rutland Community Club is scheduled to be held at 5:00 p.m. on Monday, February 12, in the Rutland Town Hall. Current officers and directors of the Rutland Community Club are: Rachel Olson, President; Bonnie Anderson, Vice-President; Andrea Erickson, Secretary; Hal Nelson, Treasurer; Marcia Brakke, Director; and, Katherine McLaen, Director.

There is only one thing that Sargent County folks like better than going to new places and meeting new people, and that’s going to familiar places to meet people they have known all their lives. Following is a report of the January Sargent County Breakfast held for folks in the Phoenix-Mesa area submitted by Curt Larson:

“The first Sargent County Gathering in the new year, 2018, was held at the Golden Corral on Monday, January 8. There was a record turnout, as many Sargent County residents opted to escape the cold and snowy North Dakota weather. Much of the conversation of the newly arrived visitors was in regard to the bone-chilling cold over the Christmas holidays. Stories were told of how changes were necessary in family gatherings, all the cancelled church services and people just wanting to not venture out of the warmth of their individual homes. The other conversations revolved around the victory of the mighty NDSU Bison football team last Saturday. They defeated a really good team, James Madison University of Harrisonburg VA. I am sure the huge influx of Bison fans attending the game, was a deciding factor in their victory. I think that some of Rutland’s UND Fighting Hawks (formerly Sioux) diehard fans would have to admit that it was a sweet victory. However, the UND vs. NDSU rivalry will intensify on September 7, 2019 when the two teams will once again face off on the gridiron.

The growing list of attendees at the Sargent County Breakfast included: Larry & Janet Bartz; Al Ciota & Clarice Ordahl; Carolyn Hopewell; Curt & Renee Larson; Duane & Sharon Lock; Elaine Marquette; Richard Meyers; DuWayne Minnaert; David & Lavonne Nelson; Orvis & Alphie Pearson; Paula Pearson; Pat Prindiville; Clark & Karen Seavert; Marlys (Wells) Stevens; Kathleen Thomas; Kenny & Faye Waloch; Gwen Young; Harold Young; and, Vincent Young. Joel Prindiville, son of Sargent County native Pat Prindiville, was here visiting his dad for a couple weeks. A total of 28 individuals! New guests present were: Clark & Karen Seavert. They live in Oregon and are renting a place in Chandler, AZ. Clark is the son of Ray Seavert, of Forman, now deceased. Paula (Seavert) Pearson is Clark’s sister, and daughter-in-law of Orvis & Alphie Pearson. She and her husband, Jim, are permanent residents of Anthem, AZ. Other attendees, DuWayne Minnaert and Marlys Stevens haven’t attended for a few years; so it was good to meet them. DuWayne resides in Hastings, MN in the summer, where he taught Industrial Arts in the high school for many years. Marlys is a permanent resident in the Mesa area. Marlys graduated from Forman High School, in one of the last classes prior to consolidation into the Sargent Central School District. So, another successful gathering was enjoyed by all. Good food and good conversation dominated the event. Our next gathering will be held on the second Monday in February, namely February 12…. same place, same time. Until then, keep smiling!”

Thanks to Curt for the report.

It’s not yet known just how many “Snow Birds” will fly back from their winter roosts to participate in Rutland’s 23rd Annual Rudy Anderson Memorial Pinochle Tournament on Saturday, February 3, but North Dakota’s First Lady of Pinochle, Sonja (Anderson) Christensen, one of the organizers of the event, reports that 40 teams have signed up for the 2018 Tournament as of Monday, January 8. The Tournament is now sponsored by the Rutland Community Club, with the family of the late Rudy & Edna Anderson of this community providing leadership, advice and inspiration. The tourney will be held in the Rutland Town Hall, Rutland ND, with play commencing at 9:00 a.m. The entry fee is $40 per couple, and pinochle enthusiasts are invited! Contact: Sonja Christensen, 1645 11th St N #2, Wahpeton, ND 58075, Land Line #701-642-6793, Cell Phone #701-899-1463, e-mail address: Bryce Carlson of Rutland will be co-chairing the tournament with Sonja again this year.

While some of us are enjoying winter on the northern plains, and some of us are enjoying sunshine in the desert of the southwest, a few of us are working hard to kick the slats out from under cancer. The following information was provided by Relay For Life activist Ione Lunneborg of Rutland: “Sargent County Relay For Life “kicks” off it’s 2018 season with a Soup and Sandwich Fundraiser on Sunday, January 21st, from 11:00 am to 2:00 pm or until gone at the Gwinner Community Center. The cost will be a free will donation. Information about the 2018 main event will be available, and attendees may register a team or sign up as a survivor. The Relay for Life Main Event will be held June 22nd in Gwinner. Hope to see you there!” Thanks to Ione & Jim Lunneborg for the information that they had received from the County Committee, and for their support of Relay For Life’s fight against cancer.

Dianna Anderson reports that she is “Grandma” again. A baby boy was born to Mike and Jill Anderson on Wednesday, January 10, at Sanford Hospital in Fargo. The name, weight, height and horsepower of the new arrival were not yet known by Grandma as of this writing. The new Mr. Anderson will be taking up residence with his parents and older sister, Audrey, as a member of the 5th generation on the Anderson Family Farm in Ransom Township. The Rutland community extends him a hearty “Welcome home!”

Joe Breker has reported that a Soil conservation café talk with Dr. Abbie Wick, Soil Scientist with the NDSU Extension Service, has been scheduled to be held in the dining room at the Lariat Bar beginning at 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday, January 10. The program was organized by Sargent County’s Agriculture & Natural Resources Agent, Melissa Seykora, and by the Wild Rice Soil & Water Conservation District. Lunch will be served by the staff of The Lariat Bar. Dr. Wick will also be hosting a seminar on grazing and cover crops at the Coteau des Prairies Lodge on Monday, January 22, states Joe, and he reports that 77 producers have already pre-registered for the grazing and cover crop seminar. Those who have registered are from several States, reports Joe, including North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa and Nebraska. Contact the Sargent County NDSU Extension Service Office at 724-6241, Extension #5, or the Wild Rice Soil & Water Conservation District at 724-6226, Extension #3, for additional information.

Meanwhile, on the national scene, a drama of Shakespearean proportions is being presented in the Nation’s Capitol City. Is it Hamlet, Macbeth or Richard III? Nope. It’s the White House, where hubris, betrayal, family in-fighting and treachery are being played out on a grand scale, worthy of a TV soap opera, if not the Shakespearean stage. Steve Bannon, who once stood at the right hand of power, has been cast out, along with most of those who ran the xenophobic, bigoted campaign that helped propel the current occupant of the White House into the Oval Office. Whether this play will turn out to be a tragedy, comedy or farce remains to be seen, but so far, we have only seen Act One. As of Friday, January 12, there are 51 weeks down and only 157 weeks to go until January 20, 2021. Well, as the Bard once wrote, its all “…sound and fury, signifying nothing!”

That’s the news from Rutland for this week. For additional news 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, 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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