Monday, November 29, 2010

The End of Thanksgiving Weekend

Sunday, November 28, 2010. It's Advent Sunday. Also the last day of the Thanksgiving weekend.

Sunset over Sauk Centre's south side. November 28, 2010.

I've been spending the last few days, having a good time with my family, which involved driving to North Dakota and back. I hope your long weekend was as pleasant as mine was. Wednesday, I should be back to writing about what I've noticed in Sauk Centre.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving! And a Little Dark Humor

Thursday, November 25, 2010. Happy Thanksgiving!

Hope you're having a better time than these two turkeys:

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

'I'm Dreaming of a White Thanksgiving'

Wednesday, November 24, 2010. Like the song says, "it's beginning to look a lot like Christmas." And it's the day before Thanksgiving. The generic "Happy Holiday" sign is up over Highway 71/Main/"The Original Main Street, and there's a little snow on the ground.

Monday morning. Snow: covering the sidewalks, but getting lost between blades of grass. November 22, 2010.

Monday and today were dim days, the sort of thing that a Chamber of Commerce often doesn't tend to emphasize when discussing the virtues of their town.

That house next to St. Paul's on Sinclair Lewis Avenue: It's not there any more. November 22, 2010.

We didn't get the sleet and ice pellets that one forecast talked about. Can't say that I'm sorry about that. As it was, we've got a decent little coat of snow. While the snow was doing its decorating, around noon, it was dark enough for headlights to make sense.

Noon today. 2 of three vehicles have their headlights on. Seen through a decently-insulated window, it was a pleasant scene. November 24, 2010.

A closer look at the same photo. It's within a few minutes of noon - the mail truck and car have their headlights on. The SUV? I'm not sure what was happening there. November 24, 2010.

Tomorrow's Thanksgiving. I see in the news that Apple and Cider, two turkeys, were pardoned by the president.

That's been a light side of leadership that's been traditional since - well, actually it seems to go back to the Kennedy administration. Or Reagan. Depends on how you define the 'pardon.' ( You may have read something different in the papers. Can't say I'm surprised about that.

Back in 2005, by the way, the two famous turkeys - Snowball and Blizzard - were from Melrose. At least, that's what I read.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Moonrise, Freezing Rain, and a Chinese Restaurant

Sunday, November 21, 2010. Friday's moonrise was a bit more showy than most, with a distinct halo around the moon.

Moonrise: There's a reason it looks so big. November 19, 2010.

There was a distinct ring toward the outside of the halo - that doesn't show in this photo. Oh, well. November 19, 2010.

There's been more going on than that.

I've heard that O'Reilly's Auto Parts was offered the old Fitness Guru building, but decided that they wanted to build their own store. That location at South 12th and Fairlane Drive is about as good as it gets in that part of town, so I can see their point.

We may be getting a new Chinese restaurant: run by an entirely different outfit than the folks who had Andy's Wok downtown. I'll be keeping an eye on the old Fitness Guru place - that's where I heard the new restaurant might be going.

Don't take these predictions of mine all that seriously: My information is of the 'some guy said he heard' variety.

(I've written about Sauk Centre's first Chinese restaurants a few times, over the years: June 22, 2008, May 16, 2008, April 4, 2008, June 24, 2007 for starters.)

Which brings me up to this morning. Last night's freezing rain had left somewhere between a sixteenth and and eighth of an inch of ice on #3 daughter's car. We usually take the van, but it's in for repairs. I wrote about that in my personal blog.

Freezing rain left a nice, even coat of ice on the windshield. November 21, 2010.

That was more than just 'frost' or a film of ice. The black thing is one of the windshield wipers. November 21, 2010.

Street crews have been out, sanding intersections, so getting to work tomorrow morning shouldn't be too challenging. Anyway, folks who have lived here for more than a year should be used to this sort of thing by now.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Wind Turbine's Coming to Town

Wednesday, November 17, 2010. I see in the Sauk Centre Herald that an outfit called Talk, Inc., will be building a wind turbine in the industrial park - to provide power for their plant, with the excess sold to Missouri River Energy. The tower's going to change the skyline on that side of town. The article said it'll be 120 feet tall with 24 foot blades. When something's that tall, the FAA says it has to have a red light on it. Should be an impressive sight.

The paper also tells about a teenager who got shot in the leg while hunting deer. Not the way I'd like to get my name in the news. Good news: He's expected to recover.

Helical 'Christmas trees,' a cartoony inflated turkey and scarecrow, landing lights along the sidewalk, and a Nativity scene: the holidays are upon us. November 17, 2010.

I took that photo around noon. This hasn't been the brightest of days. At least now, with temperatures staying below freezing, we don't have mosquitoes.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Getting Ready for the Holidays

Sunday, November 14, 2010. We got our first taste of winter yesterday - or pretty near the first. Enough snow came down to fill in gaps in the grass. The temperature's starting to be plausibly wintry, too. Well, late-autumn-y, anyway.

Neighbors getting their yard decorations ready for Thanksgiving - and Christmas. November 11, 2010.

My family and I have what I suppose is a cold: the sort of thing where you don't feel sick, but you're not exactly well, either. I haven't done a scientific survey, but it's probably something that's 'going around.'

Snow, but not much, came yesterday and last night. November 14, 2010.

Quite a few households have Thanksgiving decorations up. And, in some cases, Christmas displays, too. We could have an open winter: I hope not, but it could happen. Folks who are serious about their holiday things generally seem to assume that we'll have snow, and in decent quantity: so they get the bulky items out early, while the walking is easy. Besides, this way they've got a good chance of having a nice, smooth layer of snow around the reindeer, sleighs, and

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

O'Reilly Auto Parts Progress, and a Gray Day

Wednesday, November 10, 2010. A few days of "October's bright blue weather" seem to have been delayed in transit, and arrived in early November. Today wasn't one of them.

About 20 minutes after 1:00 in the afternoon: and folks are driving with their headlights on. November 10, 2010.

O'Reilly Auto Parts is getting closer to being ready. A crew was inside today, working on the interior.

O'Reilly Auto Parts, at Fairlane Drive and South 12th. I took this picture at about 2:30 in the afternoon today. November 10, 2010.

This was a dim afternoon: and it finally started raining. I'm looking forward to nicer weather. Fewer clouds, anyway.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Very Safe School Bus Drivers

Sunday, November 7, 2010. Halloween's over: and after almost a quarter-century of living here, I still haven't seen the inside of "Monster Manor," in the fairgrounds across from Coborn's.

The midterm election's over, too: for which I'm duly grateful. The political ads for the state and national races - - - Well, it's over, and we've got a breather before the next one. I read in the Sauk Centre Herald that we had a pretty good turnout: 68% of the registered voters, ten points higher than the state average. I've suspected that we're a tad more likely to give a rip about what happens in our community: but I'll admit to a bias.

I love it here.

Take the front page headlines of this week's paper, for example. The first thing I saw was that Sauk Centre school bus drivers were "recognized for the superior procedures" after a surprise inspection. It's nice to live in a town where good news on the front page isn't a rarity.

Also in this week's Herald: Walt Junkin has played taps at military funerals here for 54 years. There's a pretty good write-up in the paper. And in the online edition. Something I didn't know: The VFW and American Legion posts here have a mechanical bugler.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Band Concert: Late on Account of Election

Thursday, November 4, 2010. I said I'd have a little more about that band concert. Mostly, two photos:

About six minutes before 8:00 p.m., in the high school auditorium. November 2, 2010.

About 11 minutes after 8:00 p.m.: there's a reason this concert started later than they usually do. November 2, 2010.

The high school bands, grades seven through 12, had their first concert of the year this Tuesday, November 2. Which was also the day of the American midterm election. The concert started later than such things usually do, we were told, because one of the rules was that they couldn't start until after the polls closed.

As to why the concert couldn't have been scheduled on another day? I've no idea. Maybe that was the only time the auditorium was available.

Anyway: I enjoyed the concert - and the 'thank you' to admin and janitors at the end. 'Behind the scenes' folks don't get recognition all that often.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Sirens and a Band Concert

Wednesday, November 3, 2010. The emergency sirens went off today, at 1:00 p.m., right on schedule. I don't know whether to call that a tradition, a routine, or what. In practical terms, it's a good idea to test a system like that periodically: so maybe I should call it 'routine maintenance.'

Then there was last night's band concert at the high school. I'll get back to that