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9/6/2006 – News

Volume 123, Number 31             Wednesday, September 6th, 2006

Granns compete at national high school finals rodeo
Last week we followed the adventures of Laura Waldo of Warwick when she competed at the National Finals High School Rodeo in Springfield, Ill. This week we visit with John Grann of Sheyenne and Minnewaukan about the participation of two of his youngsters in the event.
The Grann situation was somewhat unusual in that Ben, 17, and Bobbi, 15, both competed in two events at the national event. To qualify for the nationals Ben took fourth in the state in calf roping and steer wrestling. Bobbi took third in the state in goat tying and second in the state in barrel racing.
The top four finishers in 40 different associations from about 35 states were eligible for the nationals. Competitors were also present from five Canadian provinces and some Australians competed as well.
John drove the pickup, pulling a 24-foot stock trailer which carried five horses: one for goat tying by Bobbi and Laura; one for Bobbi’s barrel racing; one for Ben’s calf roping; one for Ben’s steer wrestling; and one for John to ride when he hazed for Ben in the steer wrestling.
Hazing consists of boxing in the steer between the hazing horse and the competitors’s horse so the competitor can jump onto the running steer.
There were 150 to 160 contestants in each event and about 30 at a time competed in each rodeo. There were rodeos at 9 a.m. and 7 p.m. daily.
John said the luck of the draw is really important. If one gets a good calf in the calf roping, the probability of coming out with a good score increases. If one draws a calf which comes to a dead stop in the middle of the competition, the contestant is simply out of luck. "There were a lot of good competitors at the nationals," John said. "And lots of good horses, too."
He said one thing he noticed was the quality of horses coming from The South. "They must have more money there because they seemed to have fancier rigs."
Each contestant has two runs in his or her event. Ben had mixed luck with both his events. He had one good calf roping time and one good steer wrestling time, but the other runs were not as good. Bobbi had about the same luck. "You’ve got to do very well in both events to end up in the top 20 so you can compete a third time," he explained.
The winners are chosen from that top 20.
"My excuse for them is that both Ben and Bobbi had to compete in the rain," he said. "And Bobbi had to compete in mud both times in the barrel races," he added.
He said it was unbelievably hot with temperatures in the 90’s with oppressive humidity. It didn’t cool off at night much. "By Friday, the heat just got to me," he said. When it rained during the competition, it just poured. "That’s the only time I’ve been soaked by rain and didn’t cool off," John said. "It was still 85 degrees after the rain."
And how did the horses manage? John was told they should give their horses electrolytes and they did so religiously each time they were watered. The horses are used to running free in the pasture and they were unaccustomed to being confined to stalls. They had fans blowing on them and they were taken out three times a day for exercise. They also stopped to exercise the horses on the way home.
"After getting home and running in the pasture, they look like they never left," John said. "I think the electrolytes really made a difference."
He didn’t care much for the traffic. Driving a car in heavy traffic is bad enough, but pulling a 24-foot trailer in heavy traffic is something else. They even experienced bottlenecks on the Interstates.
He had to brake suddenly on one occasion and one of the horses suffered a scratch on its head from the sudden deceleration.
"It was really a pleasure to hit South Dakota and use the cruise control again," he said.
"It was a great experience for the kids," he said. "They’ll never forget it."
"We wouldn’t have been able to go if it hadn’t been for the financial help we received," John said. Total cost was about $2,500 and part of that cost was covered by donations from the state association. A steak fry was also held in Minnewaukan to help with expenses.
How about next year? Well, Ben will be able to compete again next year. Bobbi will be able to compete three more years. And then there’s Lacey in grade school and little Johnny, who hasn’t even started school yet. There will probably be high school rodeo competitors in the Grann family another dozen years or so.

The Grann Family is pictured on their ranch east of Oberon. Left to right are Lacey, John, Johnny, Donna, Bobbi and Ben Grann. There are likely to be Granns participating in high school rodeo events another dozen years or so. Ben and Bobbi competed at the national finals this year.

Warwick builds park picnic shelter|
Warwick might be a small town but it’s got plenty of community pride.
As the Warwick Centennial began to approach, the community formed a Warwick Day Committee to oversee the planning of events and coordination of the celebration. A group of volunteers, including Kaz Anderson, Darlene Marquart, Kay McKelvey, Gerry Brodell, Marion Anderson, Kerry Bernier, Glady Ja-cobson, Averiel Wood, Kay Grav-dahl and Marilyn Hatlestad served on the Warwick Day Committee.
The committee realized with the impending Centennial Celebration the Warwick Park was in need of a picnic shelter. The project began with the Warwick Day Committee meeting with city representatives and contractor Ed Poehls to plan and organize the construction of the shelter. Once the costs and details had been discussed, the 10-member Warwick Day Committee set out to secure needed funds. With the assistance of several donors and countless volunteer hours the Warwick Park picnic shelter became a reality in time for the centennial celebration July 28-30.
Among those who provided funding and help for the project are the North Central Planning Council, Bergstrom’s Auto Management, Otter Tail Power Company, Northern Plains Resource Conservation & Development, Western State Bank, Farmers & Merchants State Bank of Tolna, Ramsey National Bank & Trust Company, Citizens Community Credit Union, Darrel and Nan Forest, Terry and Sharon Walter, ND Telephone Company, Wal-Mart, LaMotte’s Paint & Glass Supply Co., Firestone Tire & Service Center and the Center of North America Coalition.

Members of the Warwick Day Committee are pictured in the new picnic shelter in the Warwick Park which was erected due to the committee’s efforts. Left to right, front row, are Kerry Bernier, Kay Gravdahl, Marion Anderson and Glady Jacobson. Back row: Kay McKelvey, Gerry Brodell and Darlene Marquart. Not pictured are Marilyn Hatlestad, Averiel Wood and Kaz Anderson.

VanDolah graduates from officer candidate school
LeeAnn Van Dolah graduated Aug. 19 from Officer Candidate School (OCS) at Camp Grafton, Devils Lake. She is the daughter of Larry and Janet Van Dolah of rural Esmond.
She joined the Army National Guard after graduating from Maddock High School in 2003. LeeAnn completed basic training in North Carolina and advanced individual training at Fort Sam Houston in Texas, then returned to Camp Grafton to begin the OCS program.
Other honors she received at graduation include the physical fitness award, which goes to the candidate with the highest Army physical fitness test score achieved during Phase II of OCS, and the Distinguished Honor Graduate Award-Erickson Trophy. This honors the candidate who has earned the highest combined academic, physical fitness and leadership scores. LeeAnn was presented with a 10K gold class ring and a silver trophy bowl.
The OCS graduate also earned the rank of second lieutenant.

Major General Michael J. Haugen, adjutant general of the North Dakota National Guard, presents LeeAnn Van Dolah with the Distinguished Honor Graduate Award-Erickson Trophy.

Technology applied to farming in test fields
Lake Region State College (LRSC) President Dr. Sharon L. Etemand had a firsthand look at the progress being made by the Dakota Center for Technology-Optimized Agriculture when she joined the center staff as they harvested the final test field near Rock Lake August 31.
The center — an initiative funded through a $450,000 state Centers of Excellence grant — is a partnership between LRSC in Devils Lake, the NDSU-Langdon Research Extension Center and private sector partners Agri ImaGIS of Maddock and TotalCrop Farming Systems of Langdon.
It fuses three arenas: engineering research, applied research and education. It also has received a $45,000 award ($15,000 annually over three years) from the Lake Region Growth Fund with support from Forward Devils Lake.
Housed at LRSC, the center is managed by Dr. Paul Gunderson and guided by a center coordinator, LRSC Adult Farm Management faculty and a steering committee composed of local, regional and national leaders. Center staff worked with four "answer" farms throughout the growing season located near Langdon, Nekoma, Rock Lake and Rolla. The center’s technology was used from seeding to harvest. Each farm seeded 160 acres of spring wheat using global positioning systems, computerized field maps and variable rate fertilizer application.
"With harvest complete, the staff will now analyze the test field’s wheat to gauge the optimization received by utilizing these technologies," Gunderson said. "We’re hoping to have results to share in late fall," he said.

Lake Region State College President Sharon Etemad prepares to make a round at the Steve Rodenbiker field near Rock Lake.