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Wednesday, March 29, 2017 11:23 AM
Thirty years ago — 1987 — seems almost like yesterday to us old-timers.  In January the Spring Valley Recreation Center opened in the former Wolves Den, formerly Duffy’s, owned by Phil Erickson and Laura Groth.  The DNR worked on making Mystery Cave part of Forestville State Park; much discussion ensued and we enjoy the merger today.  The 28th annual meeting of the Community Memorial Hospital and Nursing Home was coming up.
  • ‘Old-timer’ looks back at yesterday — 1987
    Thirty years ago — 1987 — seems almost like yesterday to us old-timers.  In January the Spring Valley Recreation Center opened in the former Wolves Den, formerly Duffy’s, owned by Phil Erickson and Laura Groth.  The DNR worked on making Mystery Cave part of Forestville State Park; much discussion ensued and we enjoy the merger today.  The 28th annual meeting of the Community Memorial Hospital and Nursing Home was coming up.
  • Clan-isms are words to live by
    Over the years, my family has said some pretty wild things. I’m not ashamed to admit that many of the words that have come out of our mouths are just plain ridiculous and really don’t make sense outside our little sphere of craziness. But there are other things we’ve said that I like to think of as genuine words of wisdom, the kind you should have hanging on your wall in conspicuous places so you’ll always remember them.
  • Cutting state regulations OK,  but not at expense of local control
    In many ways the rural-metro divide seems to be growing in Minnesota. One of the more prominent issues is funding for light rail vs. rural highways, which has created divisions within the state, not just across party lines.
  • Lawn swing dates back to before 1900
    We had no idea the lawn swing that we received from a cousin family in the 1940s was something that had been available before 1900. 
  • Health insurance not only complicated, but also personal
    “Now I have to tell you, it’s an unbelievably complex subject,” President Donald Trump said at a meeting of governors last month. “Nobody knew health care could be so complicated.”
  • Dick Sears, who grew up in SV, had great ‘spiels’
    Having grown up here and attending school here, Dick Sears was an amazing entrepreneur. As far as we know, he wrote most of the “spiels” for the 1908 Sears, Roebuck & Co. catalogue.  This happened to be Catalogue No. 117 - The Great Price Maker: “See the greatly reduced prices shown in this catalogue. This book will be sent free to any address. Write us a letter or postal card and say ‘Send me your large catalogue’ and we’ll send it free. Capitol stock Forty Million Dollars.  Please show this catalogue to your friends and neighbors.”
  • I believe Minnesotans tend to respond inappropriately to this state’s weather. We resist getting out our winter clothes as long as possible, but when below zero temperatures and snow-covered roads force us to finally cave in, we go the complete opposite direction.
  • Sunshine key in age of shady truth
    Many years ago, I stopped a mayor outside City Hall to get his view on a controversial vote that had just occurred at a council meeting. He wasn’t anxious to answer my questions, and finally a council member/friend who was the only person with him advised the mayor to say whatever he wanted and if it didn’t go over well, he could claim he was misquoted since the comments weren’t being made in a public forum.
  • American soldiers adopt orphans in France
    More headlines from the Stars & Stripes, dated Nov. 29, 19l8.  “Surpassing all soldier precedent for generous and spontaneous giving, the AEF (Allied Expeditionary Force) this week adopted 294 fatherless little children from France.”  For Christmas giving, the War Orphan Campaign had gone over many, many francs.
  • Stick-to-your-ribs foods important part of feeding 13
    There are many challenges associated with a family as large as mine, but the most constant difficulty Mom has encountered is feeding 13 people three times a day. This task is nearly impossible to accomplish, but Mom manages it largely by incorporating “volume” foods into most of our meals.
  • Picture may be worth 1,000 words, but words will always be needed
    The old saying “a picture is worth a thousand words” has some validity in that a complex idea can be conveyed more effectively in a single image than just text. However, usually, a picture, particularly a photograph, can’t stand on its own without some description.
  • Doughboys defeat Germans to make world safe again
    At the end of World War I in France, the doughboys (Allied Expeditionary Forces or AEF) had defeated the Germans and the “world was safe again.”  An issue of the Stars & Stripes, By and For the Soldiers of the AEF, dated Nov. 29, 1918, came into our hands. Soon after the Armistice was signed on Nov. 11, 1918, the Stars & Stripes issued Vol. 1, #23 in celebration. First a notice to subscribers: “All subscribers will be honored unless a refund is requested; OR any refund may be turned over to the War Orphan Fund.”  More on that later. 
  • Disasters with cell phones aren’t usually irreparable
    Cell phones: the modern convenience. Or at least they would be if you could find them.
  • Minnesota weather anything but average, or even predictable at times
    Early last week, we got our first report of a robin when Les Hyland of Spring Valley called in to say he spotted one of the first signs of spring in the form of a bird. Other bird enthusiasts commented on the large number of geese flying north so early in the year.
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