10/31/2007 – News
Volume 124, Number 39
Howard inducted into Hall of Fame
BY RICHARD PETERSON
The weekend of October 20 and 21 was one Duane and Orpha Howard of Sheyenne will remember for a long time. Duane was inducted into the Rodeo Hall of Fame at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City, Okla.
"I’ll remember that until the day they lower me into the ground," said the 74-year-old retired rodeo star.
In 1955, 1957 and 1960 he was runner-up behind Jim Shoulders in bull riding. In 1957 he was the Rodeo Cowboys of America’s all-around runner-up champion. In 1960 and 1961 he won the NFR bull riding championships.
He was at the top in points in 1961 when his career took a nosedive. He was seriously injured in saddle bronc riding at the Cheyenne, Wyo. Frontier Days Rodeo. After a lengthy recovery he once again resumed bull riding and rode in his last event in 1974.
After that he worked as a pick up man at rodeos and eventually became a rodeo judge, traveling all over the US.
Duane was one of eight rodeo stars inducted into the national hall of fame October 21. The others were Winston Bruce, Wilbur Plaugher, Bob Tallman, Frank McCarroll, Royce Sewalt, George Paul and Clyde Vamvoras.
Duane, Jim Tescher and Alvin Nelson are the only North Dakotans in the National Rodeo Hall of Fame.
Duane was also inducted into the North Dakota Cowboy Hall of Fame at Medora in 1998.
With typical modesty, Duane said it was a big surprise when he was notified he had been chosen for induction. There was no question they would attend the event, since this was a major honor.
Duane, his wife of more than 50 years, Orpha, and their grandson, Mitchell Poulsen set off for Oklahoma City on Wednesday, Oct. 17. On the way down they spent the night at a motel in Hebron, Neb.
Duane drove part of the way down there, but about halfway, Mitchell took over driving and Duane relinquished the wheel for the rest of the trip. "He’s a really good driver. We got lost a few times in Oklahoma City, but it wasn’t long before Mitchell got us back on the right track," Duane said.
Mitchell is a student at Bismarck State College. Orpha added, "I don’t know how he found his way around Oklahoma City, but he did. I sat in the back seat praying." She was concerned because of the heavy traffic and them not being at all familiar with the city of 538,000.
They stayed at the Waterford Marriot Hotel in Oklahoma City. A block of rooms was reserved by the Hall of Fame, which was a mile or two away, and the rooms were at a bargain rate of $84 per night. But it was very expensive to eat there, so they didn’t do much of that.
The afternoon of Thursday, Oct. 18 they looked at merchandise in western stores near the stockyards. That evening they went to the Remington Park Racetrack. This is a huge place that now has gambling as one of its major sources of income, along with a world class racetrack.
On Friday, Oct. 19 they again visited the western stores because Duane was shopping for a new vest and scarf to wear at the induction ceremony. "Duane’s not a suit and tie man," Orpha explained. "Everywhere we went, Duane ran into someone he knew," said Orpha.
He’s quite a visitor, so there was a lot of time spent on that activity. "He’s got friends from all over the country," Orpha said.
People from Memphis, Tenn. and California flew in to see Duane inducted. Oberon native Tom Wetzel came from Albuquerque, NM.
There was quite a contingent from North Dakota, too. Among family members attending were Duane and Orpha’s three daughters: Mitchell’s mother, Luana and her husband LeRoy Buckmeier and Luana’s daughter Leah of Sheyenne; Annie and Don Huber of Warwick; and Renie and Quince Hambeck of Devils Lake. Also present was Duane’s brother, Larry Howard of Ray.
John and Donna Grann and Allan "Budz" Howard of Sheyenne and Jim "Wishbone" Howard of Bismarck were also there. They are cousins of Duane. Nancy and David Abrahamson and Shane of Maddock were there. Nancy is Orpha’s niece.
At 4 p.m. Duane sat in on an oral history interview at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum. The museum is a huge place with many items of western lore, including Frederic Remington paintings, guns, and areas of the museum devoted to such things as rodeo clowns, horses, you name it. "We’re going to go back there and spend two or three days in the museum," Duane says. "We’ll save up a fistful of money, fly in and take taxicabs to get around," he joshed.
Saturday, Oct. 20 Duane was interviewed for the oral history project. The interview was supposed to be an hour, but Duane is quite a story teller and they had to extend the interview by 20 minutes.
The interviewer was intrigued by one story Duane told. Bull riders use a rope that they wrap around the bull to hang onto when it’s trying to throw off the cowboy. It seems Duane’s bull rope got muddy at one rodeo. His grandma, Martha Howard, saw the muddy rope and threw it in her Maytag washer to get it clean. "It was just like a rag when it came out of that washing machine," Duane said. It was, for all practical purposes, ruined. "I was new at riding bulls and didn’t know any better, so I kept using it and actually won some rides with that rope," Duane said.
In the evening there was a silent auction and a supper at the museum, followed by a regular auction. Everything went very high they said. Duane bought two items, a shirt and a 1.5 liter bottle of Crown Royal whiskey, a premium drink. "That’ll last him a year," Orpha said. "Oh, I don’t know about that," Duane responded. Renie bought a painting of singer and rodeo star Chris LeDoux riding in a rodeo.
Sunday, Oct. 21 was the day of the induction. They checked out of their hotel and gathered for breakfast at the museum. "All the inductees had something nice to say about Duane," Orpha remarked.
After the induction ceremony everyone gathered outside for pictures. Darrell Dorgan, curator of the North Dakota Cowboy Hall of Fame made sure the photographer got a shot of all the attendees from North Dakota. After picture taking, they checked into a Comfort Inn near the Remington Park Racetrack and saw the $300,000 Oklahoma Derby that evening.
Monday, Oct. 22 they left for home at about 6:30 a.m. with Mitchell at the wheel. They got back to Sheyenne at about 10 p.m.
Orpha said it was a wonderful experience. "I was absolutely amazed at all the people talking about Duane and how well he was liked," she said. "The kids and I sat in awe at how famous he really is and how many friends he has all over the US. I always knew I have a good man, but I had no idea he was so well-liked.
"I said to Leah, ‘You didn’t know your grandpa was so famous, did you?’ She replied, ‘No, I thought he was just my grandpa.’ "
The fact that he was more than just a grandpa was evident at the standing room only crowd which showed up at Ostby Hall in Sheyenne October 12 for a recognition steak fry for Duane. One of the reasons he’s got so many friends is because he takes time to visit with everyone.
There have been so many calls and cards congratulating Duane they’ve stopped counting them. "We’re overwhelmed at all the support and well-wishes," Duane says. "And we’re grateful, too," adds Orpha.
When they returned to Sheyenne they discovered that their neighbors, Jim Hanson and his son R.J. had cleaned the Howards’ yard of leaves. Five pickup loads of leaves. Duane’s got good friends. He deserves them.
Duane Howard of Sheyenne is pictured with the gold medal he was presented during his induction into the National Rodeo Hall of Fame in Oklahoma City, Okla. on October 21.
Successful elk hunt
The father-son hunting team of Dennis Weed, left, and Riley Weed, right, both of Minnewaukan, came home last week with trophy racks from a hunt in the Gunnison, Colo. area. The two won a hunt valued at $6,500 in a raffle conducted by the Rugby Gun Club. Both elk were about the same size, 700 lbs., but Dennis’s elk had a much larger 6×6 rack. Riley’s had a 5×5 rack. Their guide stated the larger rack was the biggest or perhaps second biggest rack he’s experienced in 44 years of guiding in that area. Dennis downed his elk with a 30-06 and Riley used a 300 Winchester Magnum. They came home with 614 pounds of quartered elk meat. They were accompanied by Dwight O’Connell of Minnewaukan who had a cow tag, but didn’t get off a shot. The big rack was said to be worth $5,000.
Benson County Extension Agent Scott Knoke (left) was recognized for 15 years with the NDSU Extension Service at the Extension/Research Extension Center fall conference recently in Fargo. Extension Director Duane Hauck presented the award. In addition to awards, the Extension conference included training on subject matter areas, the art of teaching, civil rights, inspiring learners, private and public value, and many other topics for the county, area and state Extension staff and Research Extension Center staff.
Firemen visit school
Members of the Spirit Lake Fire Dept. presented a lyceum at the Warwick School for grades K-6 during Fire Prevention Week. The firemen stressed that people should never start fires or play with matches or lighters. They urged family plans and practice fire drills, along with keeping fresh batteries in smoke alarms. They also went over what to do if caught in a fire. Smoky the Bear was a surprise visitor. Left to right are Spirit Lake firefighters Denver Littlewind, Vince Littleghost and Travis Dubois.
HERE IS THE CAPTION FOR WARWICK FIRE KINDERGARTEN:
Warwick School kindergarten students Mallory DeMarce and Sarah Anderson don their fire hats and pose with goodie bags received from the Spirit Lake Fire Dept.
Warwick School kindergarten and pre-kindergarten students visited the Dick and Betty Bye farm near Warwick to choose pumpkins. Jackson Delorme and Kalen Jackson were among the group.
HERE IS THE CAPTION FOR WARWICK KINDERGARTENERS WITH PUMPKINS:
Warwick kindergarten student Gary Feather, front, bags his pumpkin as David Mandan looks over the pumpkins available for the children to decorate and take home for Halloween.
Girls take third
The 4th and 5th grade girls’ basketball team of Maddock placed third in a tournament in Lakota October 13.Team members are, back row, left to right, Kristi Medallen, Courtney Lauinger, Kaylee Tollerud and Ashley Risovi. Front row: Coach Mandy Johnson, Allison Lauinger, Alyssa Armentrout, Kenadi Lee, Natalia Wright and Micki Brandvold.
Coloring contest at Maddock
American Legion Post 123 of Maddock and its Auxiliary recently sponsored a coloring contest for the kindergarten class at Maddock. Left to right, front row, are Heaven Lawson, Austin Huffman, Madyson Sears, Skylar Arnold and Logan Gigstad; Children and Youth Chairman Bernice Aanderud; and Commander Lonnie Nelson. In the back row, left to right, are Adjutant David Daeley, Carter Tandeski, Kadin Neppl, Gunnar Hagen and Jacob Arnold.
AWM breakfast volunteers
The Maddock Memorial Home has started a new service of providing a restaurant-style breakfast once a month for its residents, complete with menus. October 10 was the debut breakfast and the orders were taken by the Active Women of Maddock (AWM). The eggs were cooked to each resident’s taste and their orders were served hot and fresh by the novice cooks and waitresses of the AWM. The Maddock Memorial Home plans to do this once a month, on the second Wednesday from 7:30 to 8:30 a.m. from October through May. Shown are some of the AWM who participated in this month’s breakfast bash. Left to right are Jen Benson, Joann Bergrud, Kaaren Duren, JoLynn Fautsch, Paula Duren, Sally Campbell and Karen Smith. To encourage more community participation, the AWM challenges area organizations to help with the wait staff and cooking each month. Perhaps the FFA, FCCLA, South Viking Homemakers or even the Maddock Cafe & Lanes’ Red Hat Ladies would like to step forward and volunteer one month. The next breakfast will be on November 14. Call Beth Olson at the home to volunteer.
To be in choir
Two Maddock High School students have been selected to be members of this year’s Northwest Festival of Music Choirs. Senior Paul Rice, son of John and Barb Rice, was selected as a tenor for the mixed choir.
Also selected was sophomore Cherish Richter, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Johnny Lawson, who was selected as an alto for the womens’ choir. Both were selected by a taped audition. The festival takes place on the Minot State University campus this Friday and Saturday, Nov. 2 and 3. Students rehearse both days and present a concert on Saturday evening at 7 p.m. in the Ann Nicole Nelson Auditorium.