This week in 1961 – 60 years ago: “The Guns of Navarone,” starring Gregory Peck, David Niven and Anthony Quinn is playing at the Sunset Outdoor Theatre.

2001 – 20 years ago: The discovery of a new runestone was unveiled in Kensington. Janey Westin, a stone carver and sculptor from Minneapolis, said the inscriptions indicate it may be a headstone with AVM (from Ave Maria) and the year 1363. Other letters, KSU or KSV could be short version of a Christian prayer.

1971, 50 years ago: The Douglas County Water Patrol started in 1959 when Sheriff Howard Urness and the first water patrol deputy, Bill Banke, went out and got the county’s first boat. They still have it. Over the years the patrol has grown to three boats, and three patrolmen, all summer employees. This summer the patrol is headed by DeWayne Bisek and also includes Lee Urness and Jim Smith. Banke has been on the patrol every summer since 1959.

The Alexandria Lions Club members have been busy painting and slicking up their food stand and game building for the 1971 Douglas County Fair which opens Aug. 25. In addition to painting, the Lions have also installed new equipment in the food stand. They will be sponsoring the Snowmobile Drag Race in the Grandstand along with the Antique Car Parade.

1996, 25 years ago: Viking Battery and Industrial Supply is moving to a new building on 22nd Avenue West, just west of Kmart. The new facility will be much larger – over 10,000 square feet. In addition, the name will be shortened to Viking Industrial Supply, a wholesale distributor of mechanical power transmission products.

Newsletter signup for email alerts

Cellular 2000 has announced that the Osakis cell site has been completed. A 350-foot tower equipped with high-quality, low-powered transmit-and-receive antennas is three miles southeast of Osakis. The addition of the Osakis cell site increases Cellular 2000’s grand total of Minnesota cell sites to 69.

Rural Cellular Corp., headquartered in Alexandria, and American Portable Telecom Inc. (APT) said they have signed a letter of intent to establish Wireless Alliance LLC, a joint venture to build and operate Personal Communications Service networks in Duluth, Fargo and Grand Rapids, N.D., and Superior, WI. Subject to regulatory approvals, Wireless Alliance will be 51 percent owned by Rural Cellular and 49 percent owned by APT, with Rural Cellular responsible for managing Wireless Alliance.

2011, 10 years ago: Steve Crane, owner of Dock Master and Bayside Rentals, said his crews are running nonstop raising and reconfiguring docks and bringing in boat lifts. Crane said business has more than doubled because of continued rising water and some owners are so frustrated they are taking their docks and lifts out of the water for the season.

Mother-daughter team Nancy Tillman and Brooke Tillman-Sievers are the new owners of Sweet Seasons at 507 Broadway in Alexandria. The pair purchased the shop and inventory from long-time owner Marlene Bettin in June.

Alan Iverson has been elected the new president of the Alexandria Sertoma Club. Iverson has been an active Sertoma member since 2004 and is employed by Anderson Funeral Home.

Just for fun 1971 50 years ago: The Douglas County Water Patrol inspects the boats at all resorts and rental facilities in the county. This includes 150 resorts and 1,500 resort boats in the county.

1961 – 60 years ago: Fair time is the right time to renew your yearly Park Region Echo subscription - only $4.50 through August.

Sports Trivia 1971 – 50 years ago: A total of 65 candidates for the varsity and sophomore teams greeted head football coach Ed Christopherson as the 1971 Cardinal grid team opened preparations for the coming season. Heading the list of returning lettermen are co-captains Rich Nodland and Bob Close.

Rachel Barduson of Alexandria is a regular contributing columnist to the Echo Press Opinion page.