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The Sky Above the Ice Below


Fri, Dec 28th, 2001
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By Wayne PikeMonday, December 31, 2001

Celebrating the turning of a page on the calendar seems like celebrating another sunset. We are happy to still be here to enjoy it, but we should feel that way every day. I guess if a person is looking for an excuse to party then any excuse will do. I would enjoy New Years more if it came at the beginning of August when we are more in need of a celebration instead of another bash so close to Christmas.

With few culture-wide New Years Day traditions, I have been free to try several different activities. I recall a New Years weekend that I spent with my friend, Jeff. We were both college students at the time. He invited me to his home in Miltona, Minnesota. Miltona is in dairy and lake country about twenty miles from Alexandria. They have township roads there just as we do here, except their roads tend to end in lakes.

Jeff wanted to show me the finer points of ice fishing as I had introduced him to trout fishing the summer before. We got up early on New Years Day and headed out to Lake Miltona. I was amazed that we were actually going to drive a car out onto the ice. I was doubly amazed because it was my car. We had to drive around great piles of ice piled up along the shore by the wind. How solid could this ice be if the wind could blow it around? We followed a trail across the ice made by the hundreds of cars now parked by all the little ice shacks. All that weight and so little ice.

I shouldnt have worried. Jeff showed me that the ice was over a foot thick and could bear the traffic. It concerned me a little that as I augured a hole in the ice the water came up in the hole as if there was pressure pushing down on the ice. Jeff told me how important it was to get all the ice chips out of the hole so that the line wouldnt freeze up. To remove ice chips he just reached down into the hole with his bare hands and scooped them up. It was about ten degrees that morning but the desire to ice fish properly was more important than getting our hands a little chilly.

After drilling the holes for lines outside the ice shack, we went inside to drop a couple lines and set up for spearing. Jeff taught me how to jiggle the lure in the lake water with my left hand while holding the spear, a heavy trident-shaped pickle fork affair about four feet long, with my right. I didnt know what kind of fish I was supposed to spear, but he told me that I should skewer whatever moved down there. Ag .....
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What about Fillmore County?

Fri, Dec 28th, 2001
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Monday, December 24, 2001

When I arrived at my office last Monday, there was a copy of the Sunday Winona Daily News waiting for me in the entry way. Under a front page story Published farm subsidies stir up debate, which listed the top 20 Wi ..... 
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Fri, Dec 28th, 2001
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Fri, Dec 28th, 2001
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Fri, Dec 28th, 2001
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Fri, Dec 28th, 2001
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To the Editor;

Well, you did it again...this summer you printed a statement in your "notes from a country kitchen" saying that "a good wife knows when she needs beating," and now you print a cartoon that was appalling! Where do you draw the l ..... 
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Submit a Letter to the Editorhere

Fri, Dec 28th, 2001
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To the Editor,
Monday, December 31, 2001

To the Editor,

I was very offended when I read the Fud4thought cartoon you published on 12/24/01. I was embarrassed for you that you would approve to print such an obscene cartoon. The ..... 
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Vernon H. Vigeland

Fri, Dec 28th, 2001
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Vernon H. Vigeland, 77, of LaCrosse, Wis., formerly of Mabel, Minn. died March 12, 2001 at the Green Lea Manor Nursing Home in Mabel where he had resided for only a week.

Vernon was born September 5, 1923 in Preble Township, Fillmore County, M ..... 
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Gladys Judith Swain

Fri, Dec 28th, 2001
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Gladys Judith Swain, 93, of Rushford, a homemaker, died March 7, 2001 at her home.

Gladys Judith Williams was born May 15, 1907, on the Humble farm at Highland Prairie, moved to North Dakota with her family when she was 3 months old and retu ..... 
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