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A & W: The Hot Rod of Restaurants


Fri, Apr 26th, 2013
Posted in Spring Valley Features

By Jason Sethre

The Spring Valley A & W Drive-in is rich with history tied to food, fun, and hot rods dating back to 1956 when the original owners Roger and Marge Simpson brought this restaurant to life in the small rural farming community.

Back when Elvis Presley’s first film, Love Me Tender, hit the big screen, the A & W Drive-in of Spring Valley was the scene of some of the most sought-after hot rods ever to hit the streets. And, that tradition continues today with what the A & W Drive-in has coined “Cruise Nite,” held annually on the third Thursday in August. Now in its 17th consecutive year, this event attracts over 300 classic cars along with even more enthusiasts. Not everyone can be so lucky to own the classic car of their dreams, but that doesn’t mean they can’t stop by the A & W Drive-in of Spring Valley and vicariously enjoy vehicles from an era that inspired movies like American Graffiti.

When second generation owners, Mark and Kathy Simpson, started the “Cruise Nite” event back in 1997, they attracted statewide and even national attention. As a matter of fact, many other A & W Drive-ins throughout the United States have attempted to duplicate the successes of what the Simpsons have accomplished in Spring Valley. The Simpsons continue to present another reason for tourists to swing through Spring Valley as they travel through Historic Bluff Country.

And, on top of the classic car show that the Spring Valley A & W Drive-in hosts each year, they serve up outstanding food alongside the world famous A & W Root Beer that’s so good even Arthur ‘Fonzie’ Fonzarelli would give two thumbs up and a prolonged “Hey!” Some of you may be too young to understand who these TV show icons were from our American pop culture history, and that’s OK. All you’ll have to do is stop by the A & W Drive-in for a walk down memory lane. You’ll be enlightened and impressed with the craftsmanship of a time when vehicles were built to last. Those heavy boats on the road were like tanks, and that’s why many of them are still running strong today.

While many restaurants strive to differentiate themselves with their menu or atmosphere, the A & W Drive-in of Spring Valley has turned into a tourism destination. With fewer classic cars on the road these days, they have become a historic dining attraction. When somebody sees a shiny red 1958 Chevy Impala in showroom condition driving .....
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Almanzo Bike Race coming to Spring Valley

Fri, Apr 26th, 2013
Posted in Spring Valley Features

By Jade Sexton Chris Skogen of Rochester has been riding a bike since he was a kid, and as he grew into adulthood, he rode his bike in many races. In 2007, he decided to start something unique of his own. “I wanted a different way to race,” ..... 
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Spring Valley looking to become “Shovel Ready”

Fri, Apr 26th, 2013
Posted in Spring Valley Government

By Gary Peterson What does it take to make Spring Valley attractive to companies that are home grown or looking to move into the city? At the City Council meeting some eye opening thoughts came from Kevin Kelleher of the State of Minnesota certi ..... 
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Spring Valley business owners making themselves at home

Fri, Apr 19th, 2013
Posted in Spring Valley Features

In January 2013 the Spring Valley Inn & Suites began operating under new ownership. The new owners are Munish and Raj Kaushal. Munish and his wife Raj have two boys, Aryan, age 4, and Arav, age 3. Munish stated they like the Spring Valley area ..... 
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Kingsland presented with Patriot Award

Fri, Apr 19th, 2013
Posted in Spring Valley Education

By Barb Jeffers The Kingsland School Board held their monthly meeting on April 15, 2013 in the Kingsland conference room. All members were present with the exception of Troy Asher. Also present was Superintendent McDonald. In the first order of ..... 
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Letter about Erding commentary

Fri, Apr 12th, 2013
Posted in Spring Valley Letter to the Editor

To the Editor, Your article is right on Jeff; too bad that Yvonne didn’t do a little history reading before she wrote. Her opinions on history and gun control are not factual. Yes, Hitler & Stalin were dictators but what made them Dictators? ..... 
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Kenneth D. Barcel

Tue, Apr 9th, 2013
Posted in Spring Valley Obituaries

Kenneth D. Barcel, D.C., age 81, of Spring Valley, Minn., passed on to be with the Lord Jesus Christ Thursday, April 4, 2013, at his home after a long battle with cancer. Ken was born in Minneapolis, Minn., May 22, 1931, the only child of William ..... 
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Birth Announcement - Aiden Levi Rowe

Fri, Apr 5th, 2013
Posted in Spring Valley Social Scenes

Aiden Levi Rowe Holli and Matthew Rowe of Spring Valley, MN are proud to announce the birth of their son, Aiden Levi. Aiden was born on March 19, 2013. He weighed 8 lb. and was 22 inches long. Grandparents are Geff and Nancy Dornink of Fountain, ..... 
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Guest Commentary: Pipeline a safe source

Fri, Mar 29th, 2013
Posted in Spring Valley Commentary

By Dan Terbeest, Spring Valley I have read several letters against the Keystone XL pipeline. I am having trouble seeing why we should not build it. Some of the arguments make it sound like this is something new and we don’t understand the technol ..... 
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