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Nobles County Historical Society

The annual Old-Fashioned Fourth of July at Pioneer Village in Worthington will again be co-hosted by Nobles County Historical Society (NCHS) and Prairie Reapers Power Reunion (PRPR) from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 4.  

Traditional events at the celebration include the annual melodrama and tractor events along with various demonstrations and presentations.

This year’s melodrama is Rollin’ in Dough in Mistletoe Or…Don’t Crack Jingle Bell Rock by Marietta Slater and is presented with permission from Pioneer Drama Service.  The dastardly villain is foreclosing on most of the businesses in town just before Christmas; however, a fortuitous turn of events saves the day for the good people of Mistletoe.   Performances are at 10:30 and 1:30 in the Large Barn.  

Other events include the Klassen Family Singers in the Big Barn at 9:45 and 2:30, Tractor Pull at 10:00, Tractor Parade at 12:00, St. John’s Lutheran Singers in the Small Church at 10:15, Kiddie Tractor Pull at 1:00, kids’ games, kiddie train rides and tractor display all day, and a watermelon feed in the afternoon.  This year’s featured tractor is the Oliver, and all tractors are welcome for display. 

Jim Krapf will read excerpts from the book, The Letters of a German Immigrant Farmer, in the Big Barn at 11:15 and 3:15.    

In the Village Hall, people will be demonstrating crafts.  Various demonstrations and vendors will also be on the grounds.  All day musicians may join a jam session in the Saloon with Daryl Hrdlink playing the Gambler.  In the Fire Hall and near the tractor pull area, food will be available for purchase.  


By Deane Morrison

 Venus reigns over the morning sky this month. The queen of planets rises two and a half hours ahead of the sun on July 1, with its lead growing to three hours by the 31st—thanks almost entirely to the sun rising about half an hour later by the end of the month. 

In the second week of July, go out before the sky starts to lighten and watch the V-shaped face of Taurus, the bull, graze Venus as it sweeps by the planet over the course of the week. Aldebaran, Taurus’s brightest star, marks the eye of the bull, but on the 12th Venus poses as the celestial bovine’s second eye. On the 20th, a waning crescent moon visits Venus—always a pretty sight.

Jupiter comes out in the southwest at nightfall, moving lower and more westward as the month goes by. On the 28th it, too, gets a moon visit, but from a thick waxing crescent. Saturn also comes out at nightfall, in the south between the Teapot of Sagittarius, to the east, and sinuous Scorpius, to the west. Saturn, with its golden hue, makes a nice contrast with the gigantic red star Antares, the heart of Scorpius. And don’t miss the graceful Teaspoon of stars hanging over the handle of the Teapot.

Look high in the south to southwest for kite-shaped Bootes, the herdsman, anchored by brilliant Arcturus. Just east of Bootes hangs Corona Borealis, the northern crown, ornamented by Gemma (or Alphecca), its brightest star. If you have a star chart, try finding Libra, the scales, just west of Scorpius; and Ophiuchus, the snake handler, above Saturn and Antares. If you venture out before midnight, try to go between the 14th and the 27th or 28th, when interference from the moon will be absent or minimal.

On July 3rd, Earth reaches aphelion, the most distant point from the sun in our orbit; at that moment the sun will be 94.5 million miles away. Earth moves most slowly in its orbit around the time of aphelion, and since it comes in the middle of the northern spring-to-summer stretch, it gives us in the Northern Hemisphere a few more days in our spring and summer than what our friends in the Southern Hemisphere get. 

July’s full moon rises the evening of the 8th, less than three hours before reaching perfect fullness at 11:07 p.m. Algonquin Indians called this the full buck moon, for the sprouting antlers on buck deer, or the full thunder moon, as thunderstorm season is now in full force.

The University of Minnesota offers public viewings of the night sky at its Duluth and Twin Cities campuses. For more information and viewing schedules, see: 

Duluth, Marshall W. Alworth Planetarium:

Twin Cities, Minnesota Institute for Astrophysics: 

Check out the astronomy programs at the University of Minnesota’s Bell Museum ExploraDome: 

Find U of M astronomers and links to the world of astronomy at

Great Slayton Area Get Together July 6th

The Community Band Concert on Thursday July 6th at 7 PM will feature “Magnificent Seven,” “Sing for America,” and “Red River Valley.”  The Kiwanis of Slayton will be serving sub sandwiches from Subway, chips, bars, and beverages. Please come out and support activities that benefit youth in our community.

The Kiwanis Club of Slayton is a unit of Kiwanis International. Kiwanis Clubs support and promote activities that benefit youth in our communities and the world. Some of the youth activities that our fund raising efforts support include scouting, Children’s Miracle Network, K-Kids, college scholarships, Murray County Christmas Project, Wonder World, and many others.

Bring your lawn chair and come to Gullord Park for an evening meal, enjoy a musical concert, and support a local cause.  What could be a better “Get Together!”

Murray County Master Gardeners hosting  Summer Garden Tour on July 20

Make plans now to attend the 2017 Murray County Master Gardeners’ Summer Garden Tour on Thursday, July 20 from 3:30 to 8:00 p.m. in the Lake Wilson/Balaton area.  Hosts this year include Lee & Joan York, Dave & Linda Johnson, Jerry & Judy Samuelson, Kent & Twyla Carlson, Marcie Eisfeld, Curt & Marian Feste, and Doug & Delores Swan.  Vegetable and flower gardens will be included in the tour, as well examples of unique landscaping features.  A rain date has been set for July 21; listen to KJOE Radio 106.1 FM for postponement announcements.

Tickets and maps will be available from all Murray County Master Gardeners, University of Minnesota Extension in Murray County, and Lake Wilson and Slayton banks beginning June 30.  Tickets will also be available for purchase at any of the garden sites during the tour on July 20.  Tickets are $5.00, with proceeds going to community garden projects.  

These gardens will offer a wide variety of plants and landscaping.  Participate in the tour on July 20 to see the beautiful gardens and get some ideas for your own projects.

Murray County Master Gardeners are Ardis Andert, David Bau, Karen Burch, Gaylene Chapman, Colleen Gengler, Mona Henkels, Betty Kassel, Matt Meier, Marilyn Moger, Jan Scherbart, Kathy Schwartz, Patty White, and Beth Ann Winter.  

Call University of Minnesota Extension-Murray County Office at 507-836-6927 if you have questions regarding the tour.


The Southwest Regional Development Commission Transportation Committee will be meeting on Wednesday, July 12, 2017.  The meeting will begin at 12:30 p.m. at the Center for Regional Development Offices, 2401 Broadway Avenue, Slayton, MN. 

This Annual Meeting will provide an opportunity to meet and involve discussions with the MnDOT District 7 and District 8 Engineers and staff from Mankato and Willmar on transportation issues in the region.   Other items for Committee business include: action on the Rock County Functional Classification request; District bicycle plans, status and input opportunities; Active Living Initiatives; and Languages and Interpreter Services in SW Minnesota  If there are transportation topics of interest to you, please plan to attend.

For questions please contact Annette Fiedler, SRDC Physical Development Director (507/836-1631) or by e-mail at

Sanford Health to study premature babies as part of national research team

Neonatal intensive care unit to offer Neonatal Research Network clinical trials

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – Sanford Health was chosen to be a member of the National Institutes of Health’s Neonatal Research Network.

The network has 15 sites across the country, and Sanford Health is a participating hospital with the University of Iowa. The network was created in 1986 to conduct multi-center clinical trials in neonatal medicine.

The Network is primarily funded by the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institutes of Child Health and Human Development, a part of the National Institutes of Health. Members of the network design and implement clinical trials across the Network for high-risk babies.  Successful trials often translate to best practices in the health care industry.

Michelle Baack, M.D., a neonatologist and clinical investigator, will lead the effort for Sanford Health. “To be able to offer our tiniest patients access to the important work this network conducts is a major step for Sanford,” said Dr. Baack. “The work this group has done has changed lives. We know we can help make a difference for babies and families through this network.”

Clinical trials will be available this summer in Sioux Falls at the Sanford Children’s Boekelheide Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Infants enrolled in studies at Sanford will be followed after discharge through the NICU’s follow-up clinic led by neonatologist Laurie Hogden, M,D. The follow-up clinic will help study the effect of early childhood care throughout the child’s lifetime.

The work the network has done in the past includes gathering and using data to better understand mortality rates for very low birth-weight babies and understanding early-onset sepsis. The network has a variety of ongoing randomized clinical trials and observational trials. All Sanford neonatal intensive care units will be participating.

Slayton Firemen’s Annual Street Dance

The Slayton Fire Department is a thirty member organization serving the City of Slayton as well as the cities of Avoca, Hadley and surrounding area providing 24/7 fire protection, rescue service and weather spotting to residents, businesses, and visitors. The Slayton Fire Department also provides mutual aid response to neighboring communities and counties when requested. Firefighters have full time jobs, family commitments and are also required to attend 22 drills per year as well as fire school, special training sessions and periodic regional meetings.

Slayton Fire Department’s main fund raising project for 2017 is the annual fire fighter’s dance. Your contribution is important toward helping the Fire Department provide a high level of training and service to the communities and surrounding areas. Proceeds from this year’s dance will be used to purchase new firefighting equipment. This year’s street dance will be held in Hadley on Saturday, July 22nd from 9:00 pm - 1:00am with music provided by the band, Nasty Habit.

The fire fighters feel that they are performing a duty for the community. You can do your part by helping support your local fire department. All donations should be made payable to : Slayton Fire Department Relief Association. Proceeds will go directly to the Relief General Fund.