From the Echo Press archives, 2011: U-Haul vans to sport Runestone graphic

This week in history in Douglas County.

This week in 2011, 10 years ago: Soon there will be 2,300 U-Haul moving vans with a “SuperGraphic” image showcasing the Kensington Runestone, a stone tablet that tells of North American exploration more than a century before it was originally believed to have occurred. It is hoped that the image on the highways will pique the interest of thousands of people, encouraging them to explore the mystery of the stone.

1971, 50 years ago: Voters turned out in record numbers to elect Don Hustad and Mark Walsh to three-year terms on the District 206 School Board. The turnout, the highest in school records which date back to 1940, saw voters casting 2,855 ballots with Hustad receiving 1,900 and Walsh gathering 1,124. There were eight candidates running for this election. The previous high voter turnout was in 1958 when 1,450 went to the polls.

Three area men, Jerry Johnson, Rick Frykman and Jim Standish, all graduates of Evansville High School, met (and were pictured) recently in Long Binh, Vietnam. All are serving with the U.S. Army in Vietnam.

1996, 25 years ago: Construction has begun on the new $5.35 million, 55,000 square foot Alexandria Clinic south of the city. The building site is a large patch of land across from Viking Plaza bounded on one side by Highway 29 South and on the west side by Aga Drive next to the airport. The clinic is expected to be open for business in June 1997.

Home sellers in this area will soon see a new electronic lockbox on their properties, according to Sheryl Bakewell, chairman of the Multiple Listing Service of Greater Alexandria Area Association of Realtors. Each keybox can be programmed to limit Realtor access to only certain hours of the day. It is completely encased with a rubber covering that minimizes door damage, but more importantly, records who has entered the listing, along with time and date of entry. This information is easy to access using a touch-tone phone, fax machine or the Realtors’ MLS terminal.


2011, 10 years ago: Douglas Soil and Water Conservation District Coordinator Jerry Haggenmiller estimated that 50% of wheat, 25-30% corn and 10-15% soybeans are planted. In recent months farmers have been hit with cold weather, snow and rain. Dave Johnson and his son Adam, who farm about 2,000 acres near lakes Mina and Mill, said in the May 20 issue of the Echo Press, “Us farmers are an optimistic bunch, we’re hoping this week is better.” Water remained in some areas of Johnson’s farm near Mill Lake where thousands of bullhead fish swam frantically in evaporating pools.

Just for fun – 1971 - 50 years ago: From Dave Harris’ “Sideline Comments” column: “Wayne Elton has been complaining about his golf game from time to time, about how he is not hitting the ball well yet this spring. It does not seem to affect his score too much because he shot a 72 early last week. His comment after that was, ‘For an old man, that’s not too bad.’ That’s not too bad for anyone. Young or old.”

Sports trivia 1971 – 50 years ago: The opening of fishing in the Alexandria area was perhaps the best in many years. The “Going Fishing” promotion featured gifts for the fisherman with the four largest walleye catches: First place to LeRoy Ras, using a lindy rig for bait, fishing on Lake Mary and bringing in a 9 lb. 6 oz. walleye; second place, Mike Wik, on Lake Geneva, bringing in an 8 lb. 12 oz. walleye and a northern weighing over 10 pounds; third, Mike Hanson, Alexandria, on Lake Brophy, brought in an 8 lb. 8 oz. walleye; and fourth place, Warren Thompson, on Lake Mary, with an 8 lb. 6 oz. walleye.

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

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