Dusting off the Archives
News from Verndale's Past
75 Years Ago, July 25, 1946
• J.B. Conley, veteran Verndale sheep grower, is featured in an article entitled “Wool Man” in the July issue of “The Cooperative Digest,” a national magazine printed in Ithaca, N.Y. It has this to say about him: “It was a gamble some 40 years ago when Conley paid what other sheepmen considered high prices for the first purebred Shropshires in Minnesota’s Wadena County. It was the same sort of gamble he took a few years later in 1911 when he introduced another “first” to the county, a legume called “alfalfa.”
• One of the most extensive horse racing programs ever offered at the Wadena track will be carried out on Tuesday and Wednesday afternoons, July 30 and 31, at the Wadena County Fair which is being held July 20-August1. With 45 horses listed and two entries already stabled at the fairgrounds, it promises to be an outstanding meet of fast horses.
• Lightning struck a barn on the Ben Stark farm and burned it to the ground on Tuesday morning of last week. The downpour of rain saved the other buildings from catching fire. Mr. and Mrs. Stark, who were milking cows in another barn, received quite a jolt when the lightning struck. The kindness of the neighbors who offered their assistance was greatly appreciated.
40 Years Ago, July 23, 1981
• 4-H Ambassadors Paulette Rowan and Richard Gronlund cut the ribbon at the ceremony dedicating the new Wadena County 4-H building at the fairgrounds on Sunday afternoon. Committee members who planned the structure were: Ben and Joanne Walz, Paul and Vera Malone, Gene and Belle Erickson, Pat Johnson, Vince Wegscheid, Chuck Johnson, Louie and Marcie Berstetter and Norm Thompson.
• Police Chief Cedric Haugen and his K-9 friend, Sam, a two-and-a-half-year-old shepherd-lab cross retriever, proudly displayed the second place trophy they won last weekend at Swanville. Sam, guided by his master, beat out last year’s regional champion and the number three dog and missed the top rank by a mere .17 points. Champion of all events had a score of 574.83 and Sam came in with a total of 574.66, part of which Haugen takes the blame for because of inexperience in competition. Sam was high overall in attack and tied for second in scent. They competed in the unsanctioned event against 12 entries from Minnesota and five from Wisconsin.
• The youth from Verndale Christian and Missionary Alliance and Hope Chapel churches, accompanied by their pastors, Reverends Brian Harris and Bryce Ray, were all smiles, despite being weary and grubby after spending five days canoeing in the Boundary Waters Canoe area out of Ely. They returned on Friday. The youth included Randy Steinkopf, Christy Fitzsimmons, Sandy Hess, Julie Ludlow, Mike Harne, Bob Bimberg and Jerry Swanson.
15 Years Ago, July 27, 2006
• This year the couple selected to represent the senior citizens, Bob and Marian Derby, are the 2006 king and queen at the Verndale Days celebration. The story of this wonderful couple started when the two met at Bob’s Cafe in Wadena. This building, which was at one time a local spot for many around the community to socialize, is still used for this purpose today, but only in a different manner, as it now holds the Wadena Senior Citizen Center.
• The gym at the Verndale School received a paint job earlier this summer and boldly states in white lettering on the green and black background “Home of the Pirates”. This can be seen in the background of the girls playing summer league basketball. The team has done well all summer.
• The girl's Midgets won the Summer Rec tournament. The team includes Jenny Kern, Codi Weeks, Brianna Nadgwick, Maddie Zahnow, Lizzy Youngbauer, Teresa Moenkedick, Coach Maria Moenkedick, Jamie Kern, Crystal Haskin, Elizabeth Johnson, Christine Moenkedick, Coach Collin Cottrell, Jenny Swenson, Miranda Miller and Lacey Kimber.