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Looking Back: 1965 - Explosions at Lismore service station

One year ago

The choirs of Worthington Middle School and Worthington High School, with more than 400 students enrolled, presented a concert of Beatles music at the WHS gymnasium. Conductors were Kerry Johnson and Cindy Anderson.

District 518 schools had a pool of roughly 40 interpreters, but more were needed and an effort was underway to find and recruit additional, qualified interpreters in various languages.

Sanford Health announced it had purchased the former Avera Clinic building in downtown Worthington. The building was adjacent to the Sanford Worthington Medical Center campus and had a list price of $1.1 million.

The Business, Arts and Recreation Center in Windom hosted the “Haunted Sghoul House” as Halloween approached.

The Worthington City Council passed a motion to hire Cuningham Group of Minneapolis, for a contract not to exceed $80,000, to redevelop Oxford Street.

The racing turkey of Cuero, Texas — Ruby Begonia — had the advantage and won the Great Gobbler Gallop for the year. Ruby Begonia topped Worthington’s entry, Paycheck, with a combined time of 3:20.18 to Paycheck’s 4:19.17.

A “Haunted Pirate Ship” theme prevailed for the annual Halloween activities hosted for youngsters at the Nobles County Library.

Five years ago

Paycheck made Worthington proud, with a strong showing at the Cuero, Texas, Turkeyfest. Paycheck won the second heat of the Great Gobbler Gallop, beating Cuero’s racing turkey Ruby Begonia by 21 seconds to seize the Traveling Trophy of Tumultuous Triumph. Paycheck’s combined racing time for the year totaled 1:06 to Ruby Begonia’s 2:30.

More than 100 Special Olympics athletes participated in the 21st annual bowling tournament Saturday at Worthington’s Oxford Bowl.

Minnesota lieutenant governor candidate Yvonne Prettner Solon stopped in Worthington to discuss mental health care issues with area mental health providers.

Local corn and soybean yields were looking “fantastic” during the 2010 harvest season, according to many area farmers. Soybean yields varied, ranging from the upper 40s to low 70s (bushels per acre), with the average yield being 48 to 62 bushels per acre. Corn yields were also strong. Up to 82 percent of the state’s soybeans were already harvested.

10 years ago

Worthington’s racing turkey, Paycheck, strayed off course during the second leg of the Great Gobbler Gallop at Cuero, Texas. Thus, Cuero won the year’s right to the Traveling Trophy of Tumultuous Triumph, with its turkey, Ruby Begonia, logging a cumulative time of 2:46 to Paycheck’s lagging 3:34.

Loren VanderWoude of Chandler received the Southwest Minnesota Entrepreneur of the Year Award from the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development. VanderWoude owned and operated Action Signs & Billboards, which built rotating tri-paneled signs and billboards.

The Historic Dayton House, Worthington, hosted a unique musical act, “Double Play,” which was a flute and tuba duo based in Phoenix, Ariz.

A groundbreaking ceremony was hosted at the site of the future Suzlon Rotor Corp. in Pipestone. The Suzlon plant was expected to bring in more than 100 jobs at a facility that covered 36 acres and included a 120,000 square-foot building. An additional 20,000 square-foot operations and maintenance building was also anticipated.

John Call began duties as the new Luverne city administrator.

25 years ago

Mountain Lake’s second largest employer was to close July 1, 1991, according to an announcement made by Land O’Lakes Inc. The Mountain Lake butter plant closing meant the loss of 58 jobs in the community. Mountain Lake’s second largest employer was noted to be the nursing home, Good Samaritan Village.

The body of a 19-year-old male was found in the burned remains of a trailer house in Worthington Tuesday night. Worthington Public Safety Director Don Linssen was awaiting a positive identification of the victim, and cause of the fire at the Wagon Wheel Estate Trailer Court, just north of Holiday Inn on Highway 59, was under investigation.

Worthington police officer John Pellegrino recently attended an intensive two-week DARE (drug abuse resistance education) training program in St. Paul. Pellegrino was to help educate local fifth graders about the need to stay away from drugs and alcohol.

Recycling for businesses and corporations in Worthington was to be delayed for about a month until the 96-gallon recycling containers arrived.

Playing this week at Worthington’s Northland Cinema were “The Witches,” “Marked for Death” and “Men at Work.”

50 years ago

One fatality and several injuries marked Minnesota’s 1965 opening weekend of the migratory waterfowl hunting season. John Durham, 29, a teacher at South Junior High School, Moorhead, was killed in a hunting accident. The injured included Minnesota Attorney General Robert Mattson, who suffered a head wound while hunting at Heron Lake. A stray shotgun bullet struck him in the back of the head and lodged beneath the skin. He was taken to the Heron Lake hospital, where the pellet was removed. Also at Heron Lake, William Fest, 34, Heron Lake, suffered a leg wound.

Clinton Johnson, rural Currie, shot a rare white moose while on a hunting trip this month in the Lac Seoul, Ontario, area with seven Murray County men. The animal, though not an albino, was pure white except for a few dark hairs on its neck and front feet. It weighed 1,400 pounds and was estimated to be five years old.

At Stevensons “Moonlight Madness” sale in Worthington, special offers included untrimmed coats for $39, furred coats starting at $99, car coats priced at $24, fall dresses for $13 and slacks and stretch pants from $5.99 to $7.99.

The 1965 state corn picking contest took place on the Ernst Malchow farm six miles north of Lakefield on Highway 86. Corn this year was wet, with more than 40 percent moisture content (although yield was about 70 to 75 bushels per acre).

Three Worthington High School students were representing the community as players in the Minnesota All-State Orchestra. They were string bass player Anjean Smits, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Dick Smits; violist Lynn Buller; and string bass player Arden Mahlberg.

The service station and garage at Lismore were destroyed in a series of blasts; contents of fuel drums and cans fed the flames, causing dozens of explosions and creating intense heat and flames. The fire could be seen from as far as 10 miles away. Robert Stoffel operated the station; it was the only one serving Lismore.

75 years ago

W.M. McCarville was the newly appointed project superintendent of Nobles Cooperative Electric. McCarville had been the resident engineer for the organization since the early days of the REA in 1937.

John Berg Jr. was awarded the Eagle Scout rank in a court of honor at Worthington.

Thirty-three veterinarians launched a second retest of Nobles County herds for bovine tuberculosis, since the county became an accredited area. The veterinarians and their assistants, one for each professional man engaged, met with County Agent Gene Stower and Dr. C. A. Mack, state board field veterinarian assigned to the county as supervisor, to go over final details.

The Council Oak Store of Worthington advertised T-bone steak for 24 cents a pound, bulk sausage for 12 ½ cents a pound, pork liver for seven cents a pound, a 14-ounce bottle of catsup for 10 cents, a two-pound box of soda crackers for 15 cents and three cans of Campbell tomato soup for 23 cents.

Four candidates were named for Jay Day Queen at Worthington Junior College. They were Patricia Rohlk of Worthington, Elaine Hoxie of Worthington, Phyllis Vieregge of Windom and Vonnie Mitchell of Worthington.

John Baird was named chairman of the Nobles County draft board at its organizational meeting this week, while Andy Malmquist of Rushmore was named secretary.