Plenty of fun this weekend caps Buffalo Days 2014

The Lucas Oil Skydivers performed some jumps during the Buffalo Days Fly-In Breakfast at Buffalo Airport last Sunday, June 8, which was the opening day of the weeklong community celebration.  The Buffalo Days fun continues all the way to next Sunday, June 15, which is Father's Day.  (Photo by Ed DuBois)

Princess Gabby Thompson, Miss Buffalo Maddi Yates and Princess Kailey Johnson invite you to attend the Buffalo Royalty Coronation on Sunday, June 15 at 6:00 p.m. in the Buffalo High School PAC.  Three new royalty will be selected from seven candidates to serve as ambassadors for the Buffalo community during the next year, promoting community spirit, involvement and pride.  (Photo courtesy of Lori Ende Photography)


Check out new food court downtown

            Friday night fireworks, Saturday in the Park (and the Fishing Klinic for Kids), as well as the annual Saturday evening parade and the Buffalo Royalty Coronation on Sunday are among many activities remaining as Buffalo Days 2014 comes to a close this weekend.

            The community celebration opened last Sunday with a sunny sky and a great turnout for the Fly-In Breakfast, the Car Show, the Craft Show, and, in the evening, the Buffalo Community Orchestra's outdoor concert in Sturges Park.

            Sally Custer of the Buffalo Area Chamber of Commerce said a few new features this year include a downtown food court, a petting zoo and an appearance of the Wells Fargo Stagecoach at the end of the Buffalo Days Parade.

            "We have outsourced the management of the food vending to Westrum's out of Delano," Custer said.

            You should be able to get both lunch and dinner at the food court this Thursday and Friday, June 12 and 13, and more should be available on Saturday, June 14.

            Food items include: pork chops on a stick, funnel cakes, crab cakes, coconut shrimp, fresh squeezed lemonade, gyros, boar bites and dipping sauce, walleye basket, chicken wings, alligator nuggets, and barbecue beef brisket, as well as mini donuts, all-beef corndogs, foot-longs, and cheese curds.

            The petting zoo will be open this Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in Sturges Park.  Tommy's Zoo & Stables plans to bring: a camel, a goat, sheep, exotic chickens from China, emu babies, a kangaroo, an arctic fox baby, and a kinkajou baby.

            Buffalo's annual early summer festival concludes on Sunday, June 15.  Some of the activities between now and then include: the KRWC Medallion Hunt, a carnival in the St. Francis lot near the post office, a Movie in the Park Thursday evening, Friday fireworks at dusk, Saturday in the Park, the annual Saturday evening Buffalo Days Parade (6 p.m. along 5th St., Central Ave. and Lake Blvd.), and the Royalty Coronation Sunday evening, June 15, 6 p.m., at the high school.

            Besides the fireworks at Sturges Park Friday night, live music is being performed at the Bandshell.

            Saturday in the Park includes a 9 a.m. Kiddie Parade and countless other attractions, including the very popular Fishing Klinic for Kids, which is in its 17th year.

            The Buffalo Days Parade includes 100 units, and 11 of them will be marching bands.

            As always, Miss Buffalo will be crowned on Father's Day.

            You can find more information and the entire Buffalo Days schedule at (Look for the Buffalo Days and schedule links.).



Krause Holsteins hosting Breakfast on Farm June 21

            Warren, Carol, Charles, Robyn, Andrew, and Morgan Krause of rural Buffalo invite you to bring the kids and have breakfast with the cows on Saturday, June 21 from 7 a.m. - noon during the Wright County Breakfast on the Farm.  For $5 per person, enjoy an all-you-can-eat breakfast of pancakes, sausage, coffee, and milk.  Children, five and under, eat for free.  All proceeds above cost will be donated to the local food shelf.

            "We are excited to open our farm up to the community we live in," said Charles Krause. "We hope that you will enjoy visiting our family farm and seeing how we work every day to produce a wholesome and nutritious product."

            Enjoy a morning of fun for the whole family and see where your dairy goods are produced.  Activities and attractions include: touring an operating dairy farm, cheese and ice cream samples, a "Name the Cow" contest, a 1950's style sundae stand, wagon rides, machinery exhibits, educational agriculture booths, petting zoo, Viktor the Viking, a children's play area, and gift packs for children under 12 (while supplies last).  Live music will be provided by the Tim Lundstrum and Carol Moore duo.

            Parking is available at the Buffalo Community Middle School, located on Highway 25, directly east of Walmart Supercenter.  Ride a free shuttle to the farm.  Please, no parking at the Krause Holstein Farm.

            This event could not happen without major support from the local community.  A list of all sponsors can be found at

            For more information, contact Charles Krause at 320-963-3604 or visit



Spc. Matthew Lingo returns from serving in Afghanistan

Spc. Matthew Lingo


            Spc. Matthew S. Lingo, a 2011 Buffalo High School graduate, returned home recently after several months of service in Afghanistan with the Litchfield 849 Mobility Augmentation Company (MAC).

            His parents are Dennis and Julie Lingo, and his brother, Luke, is a 2013 Buffalo High School graduate.

            The duties of the 849th in Afghanistan included keeping routes clear of IEDs (improvised explosive devices), Dennis said.  The National Guard unit deployed last July, and after training in Texas, the engineering company, which included 95 soldiers, traveled in September to Afghanistan.  They returned to the USA in May and arrived in Litchfield on Tuesday, June 3.

            Matt worked on route planning, and he also drove a large vehicle called a buffalo, which Dennis described as a bomb digging truck.  It is specially equipped for locating and removing IEDs.

            No one with the 849th was killed while serving in Afghanistan, but five of the unit's members were wounded last January during a suicide attack by the enemy.  One American soldier from another unit died due to the attack.

            Matt is now home safe and sound.  He has plans to study agriculture business at North Dakota State University.  While in high school he played football and lacrosse.



School Board plans to fill vacancy

            The Buffalo Hanover Montrose Board of Education will have a vacant seat effective July 1, 2014.  This vacancy is due to the resignation of Board member Dean Perry.

            The appointment to fill this vacancy will be effective through Dec. 31, 2015, and this seat will be up for election in November 2015.

If you would like to be considered for the vacancy, please send a letter of interest to the Board of Education at: BHM Board of Education, c/o Anita Underberg, 214 - 1st Ave. NE, Buffalo, MN 55313.

            Letters must be received by 4:00 p.m. on Friday, July 11.  The Board will approve an appointment on Aug. 11.

            If you have any questions, please call Anita at 763-682-8706 or email



BHS wrestling coach recovering after collapse in local recreation area

During the wrestling season, Coach Jason Maurer is shown talking to one of his team members, Jacob Scherber.  (Photo by Rob LaPlante)


            A Buffalo teacher and coach is recovering after a collapse last Thursday, June 5 during a local recreational league softball game.

            Fortunately, several health care professionals and first responders were nearby and came to his aid, and an automated external defibrillator (AED) was readily available, as well, according to a Fox 9 TV news report.  Jason Maurer, a local special education teacher and head coach of the Buffalo High School wrestling team, was rushed to Buffalo Hospital and then transferred to the University of Minnesota hospital.

            Maurer, 34, was reportedly in a medically induced coma for a while.  His parents, Randy and Linda Maurer, have been among those visiting the hospital, and Linda has been telling about Jason's progress toward recovery in journal entries on Jason's Caringbridge page.

            Jason's father told Fox 9 an AED is mounted inside the concession stand at the recreation area in Buffalo.  He is asking for a sign to help tell visitors where to find it if it is ever needed.  The AED that helped Jason was from a squad car.


Buffalo Rodeo takes place June 19-21

            The 2014 Buffalo Championship Rodeo, celebrating 60 years of annual performances, is taking place from Thursday, June 19 to Saturday, June 21.

            "Rodeo Fun Night," Thursday, June 19 at 7 p.m., offers fun for the whole family.  The night will include Mutton Bustin' action and a Calf Scramble.  Vendor stands will be open.  (This is not a regular rodeo performance, and admission is free.)

            The opening performance of the 60th Annual Buffalo Championship PRCA Rodeo begins at 7 p.m. Friday, June 20.  It will be Tough Enough to Wear Pink Night, so dress in pink and enter the Best Dressed in Pink Contest.  Don't miss the Smokn Guns Band under the stars after the rodeo performance.

            The second rodeo performance takes place Saturday, June 21 at 7 p.m.  Stick around afterwards to hear the band, Rusted Revolver.

            A Cowboy Church Service is open to everyone at 10 a.m. Sunday, June 22.

            Everyone is welcome to the Buffalo Championship Rodeo, the "Grandaddy" of Minnesota rodeos.  Tickets are selling fast, so order your tickets at

            Two nights of bulls, broncs, barrels, and more are planned.  The Rodeo is proud to feature the outstanding rodeo stock of Barnes and MJM PRCA Rodeo Companies.

            Also featured this year is 12-time "Specialty Act of the Year," The One Arm Bandit.



Child injured in Otsego after getting off the school bus

            A six-year-old child was injured after getting off a school bus in Otsego last Thursday, June 5.

            According to the Wright County Sheriff's Office, the student, Keira Devens of Otsego, was airlifted to a metro hospital.  At the request of the family, no medical updates will be provided by the Sheriff's Office.

            Sheriff Joe Hagerty reported a 911 call at approximately 3:15 p.m. last Thursday notified the sheriff's dispatch center that a child had been struck by a school bus.  The reported accident location was near the intersection of Padgett Ave. NE and 82nd Circle NE in Otsego.

            The child was treated at the scene and transported via air ambulance.  The child's medical condition was not known at this time, but she was reported to be conscious at the time of transport.

            According to news reports, a witness said the child had dropped something and was picking it up.  The school bus driver apparently did not realize the child was still in front of the bus when starting forward.

            The child's parents had been waiting in their car at the bus stop.  When they ran to the accident scene, their car reportedly rolled into the bus.

            KARE 11 News reported the child's parents, Trevor and Kerstin Devens, released the following statement through Children's Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota, "Our daughter, 6-year-old Keira Devens, was involved in a bus accident in Otsego, Minn. yesterday afternoon.  She is currently in stable condition at Children's Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota.

            "We thank the community for their thoughts and prayers, and request privacy for our family at this very difficult time. We will not be releasing any further information to the media about the condition of our daughter."



Candidates file for county and legislative positions

            The filing period for those who want to be county and state candidates in the November election recently concluded.

            Several county positions and a few State House of Representatives positions are open for the election.

            The county candidates include:





            Christine Husom (incumbent) of Buffalo and Tom McGregor of Maple Lake.





            Mark Daleiden (incumbent) of St. Michael.





            Robert Hiivala (incumbent) of Cokato.




            Stacy Braun (hometown not available), Bruce Doney (hometown not available) and Joe Hagerty (incumbent) of St. Michael.




            Tom Kelly (incumbent) of Buffalo.





            Judith Kelly of Maple Lake, Robin Norris Roetzler of Maple Lake and Michael Zieska (incumbent) of Maple Lake.





            Tricia Latour of Buffalo, Gregory Olson of Buffalo and Mary Wetter (incumbent) of Buffalo.





            Chris Uecker (incumbent) of Annandale.


            The local candidates for the State Legislature include:



            Joe McDonald (incumbent) of Delano.



            Marion O'Neill (incumbent) of Buffalo.

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Eight decades serving Buffalo

A significant green space for generations, Buffalo Heights Golf Club shooting for much more

By Ed DuBois

            The popular winter sliding hill at the Buffalo Heights Golf Club along Highway 25 was at one time known as Nagel's Hill.  The name offers a hint about the beginnings of about 80 years of a well-established community asset.

            No official history of the Buffalo Heights Golf Club has been found, but many people who have grown up playing golf there generally agree it began around 1931.  Land documents at the County Recorder's Office indicate the heirs of Eberhard Nagel became the owners of the property in 1931.  Colette Riethmiller said her grandfather, Dr. John Catlin, bought the land from the Nagel family around that time, and like many others in the community, Doc Catlin enjoyed playing golf there summer after summer.

            Don and Gerrie Huston, who now own a house behind the sixth tee, continue to enjoy the course.  Don said he grew up on the course.  He recalled riding a horse on the property in the wintertime and pulling a toboggan.

            Long ago, a gravel road from the big curve on Montrose Blvd. served as the driveway to the clubhouse, which was a former farmhouse for a long time before the present structure was constructed in the 1980s by Jim Schleif and Clayton Dickson.  Of course, today's entryway comes off Highway 25, and the old gravel road is long gone.

            Don and Gerrie recalled that Hal and Bev Clifton ran a restaurant in the former farmhouse.


Wonderful cold water

            John Lundsten, whose parents met while playing golf, recalled that before the Cliftons started their restaurant, Ernie and Nel Anderson lived in the farmhouse/clubhouse all summer, and Nel made cookies and coffee for the golfers.

            Lundsten has fond memories of a former red chicken coop that was used as a machinery shed.  A well with a hand pump and dipper was located nearby.

            "You had to pump quite a bit to get the water running, but that was the most wonderful cold water I ever remember drinking," Lundsten said.

            He said the well was near the present location of a flagpole.

            His parents came to Buffalo in 1927, and among their friends in town was Dr. John Catlin.

            "Ernie and Nel were like babysitters for me," Lundsten said.

            After his father, bank owner Malcolm "Mac" Lundsten, died when John was six years old, his mother, Ruth Lundsten, took on the responsibility of running the bank (Buffalo National Bank, which is now Wells Fargo Bank).

            "My mother would take me out to the golf course before work.  She told me where I could find some golf balls.  I had one golf club," John recalled.

            That was the beginning of a lifelong enjoyment of golf.


Oiled, crushed granite

            The course had sand greens in those days.

            "They weren't really sand," Lundsten said.  "The surface was oiled and crushed granite.  All of the greens were round, and they were all about the same size, with a cup pretty much in the middle of each one."

            "Ernie Anderson was the groundskeeper," he added.  "Maybe once a year, Doc Catlin would bring new oiled, crushed granite.  I am guessing he got it in St. Cloud or Cold Spring."

            Approach shots would bounce off the greens, unless they happened to hit a pile of the crushed granite, Lundsten recalled.  When putting, you could never be certain where the ball would go.

            "After putting, you would grab a 3-by-2-foot piece of carpet nailed to a 2-by-4 or a 4-by-4 and drag the green for the next group," Lundsten said.

            The cup often filled up with crushed granite.  The greens did not have flags.  "Everyone knew the cup was in the middle," Lundsten explained.

            The greens were about 20-25 feet in diameter.  However, one of them was not perfectly round like the others because it was cut into a hill, which is now part of the eighth fairway.

            That particular hole is longer now because the golf course was expanded around 1960, Lundsten estimated.  The eighth hole is now a long par five, with the green on the north end of the course near the big curve on Montrose Blvd.


Blasting rocks

            When Don Huston was a kid, he lived in the vicinity of the big curve.  He remembers watching from across the road when John Moody used a hammer, chisel and dynamite to blast some rocks on the golf course.  He hammered and chiseled to make a hole for the dynamite, and then he ran and hid behind a tree when the dynamite was about to detonate.

            Huston also recalled when a screen was made for the seventh tee.  Golfers had been concerned about possibly getting hit by wayward shots to the sixth green.  Lyle Voge and his son, Dennis, welded the screen at their auto parts business using material from the local creamery, Huston said.

            He also recalled that homebuilder Roland Payne volunteered to dig a holding pond on the side of the fourth fairway near the bottom of Nagel's Hill.

            Another holding pond near the second green has been known as "Ernie's Revenge."  Ernie Robasse volunteered to dig a hole to drain a small pond in the middle of the fairway, and the new pond that formed along the side of the fairway was soon dubbed "Ernie's Revenge."

            On hole number six, Willard and Howard Henson donated geese for the pond, but waterfowl were soon taken away because of all the droppings on the nearby greens, Don and Gerrie recalled with a laugh.


Community's support

            They mentioned that Lester Dalman built wooden poles at the tees for the yardage signs.  He was not a golfer, they pointed out, but he was among many business people who supported the golf course because they knew it was good for the town.

            Ruth Lundsten was among those who supported a stock sale to help support Buffalo Heights.  Because it was "good for the community," she encouraged all bank employees to buy golf course shares.  She told them they could take as long as they wanted to pay the cost, and in the meantime she covered the cost for them.

            Don and Gerrie remembered Ken Ernesti, Warren Boerner and Ernie Robasse getting together with others to start an annual fundraising tournament for the golf course.  They had so fun at a similar event in Ortonville, Minn., they wanted to do the same thing here.  It's purpose was the retire the golf course's debt.

            For many years, the annual "Cancer Tournament" was a major happening each summer.  Duane "Porky" Elliott of Buffalo Chrysler was much involved, and the event generated significant donations for the American Cancer Society.


The Thundering Herd

            Various groups enjoyed the golf course all summer.  One of the groups of guys included John Lundsten, and he said they called themselves "The Thundering Herd."  Other members included: Dr. John Catlin, his brother-in-law, Ernie Anderson (who worked in the courthouse), Probate Judge O.J. Anderson, School Supt. Archie Cummings, Walt Tisdale, who managed a lumber company located where the Buffalo Library parking lot is now situated, and two Maple Lake residents, Woody Stuhr and Kenny Falk.  They golfed all in one group and enjoyed many good times together.  Wagers were about a nickel a hole, Lundsten recalled.

            He told a story about O.J., Archie and a big dog that Archie liked to bring along.  O.J. was very serious and didn't like to lose.  He also didn't like it when Archie brought the dog, so Archie kept doing it.

            Archie had a dog whistle.  No one could hear the whistle, but the dog came running each time Archie blew it.

            Once when O.J. was putting and the dog was sitting about 20 yards away, Archie blew the whistle.  You can probably imagine O.J.'s reaction, as well as the uproar of laughter that followed.


Future Hall of Famer

            Perhaps the most successful golfer to grow up playing at Buffalo Heights is Vic Kline, a 1953 Buffalo High School graduate.  From here he went to the University of New Mexico.  Besides winning two New Mexico State Amateur Championships and a New Mexico Publinks Championship, he was on a basketball team that won the National AAU Championship.

            He later moved to Colorado and was a five-time Colorado PG Player of the Year.  He was president of the Colorado PGA in 1975, 1978, 1983, 1991, and 1992, and he was inducted into the Colorado Golf Hall of Fame.  In 2000, he was presented the national PGA of America Golf Professional of the Year Award, and in 2005 he was inducted into the PGA of America Golf Professional Hall of Fame.

            Contacted by phone, Kline said he came back to Buffalo last year for the reunion of Buffalo High School's undefeated football team of 1952.  He said he still has many friends here.


Green space

            Looking back at all that has happened at Buffalo Heights over its eight decades of serving the community, Lundsten said there is much heartfelt love in Buffalo for the golf course, and he expressed hope that the community will continue to support it and preserve it.

            Buffalo's nine-hole golf course has been a significant green space in Buffalo a long time.  It has been a source of summertime fun, togetherness and outdoor recreation (as well as wintertime sliding on Nagel's Hill).

            "How do you put a value on a place like that?" Lundsten wondered.

            Those who now direct the future of Buffalo Heights include the Board of Directors: Brad Winterhalter, president; Bill Nybakken, vice president; Wayne Hein, secretary; Keith Dickson, director; Eric Ebeling, director; Roger Lundeen, director; and John Stewart, director.  They have organized recent fundraising events to help keep Buffalo Heights going, and they are working with the city on a possible agreement that could help better manage the assessed cost of drainage improvements.


Hard times

            Many golf courses have been going through hard financial times in recent years.  In Buffalo, the newer 18-hole Wild Marsh Golf Club has drawn golfers away from Buffalo Heights, but at that same time the smaller course offers its own brand of golf, familiar characteristics and nostalgia developed over about 80 years.

            Buffalo Heights no longer has any of the remnants of the Nagel farm.  The red chicken coop and farmhouse are gone, and no one drinks the cold water from the well anymore.

            But where farm fields at one time produced crops and sustained livestock, you can still get out, stretch your legs, breathe the fresh air, and enjoy some open space with lush turf.

            Besides all that, if you want, you can still enjoy the thrill of a wintertime ride down Nagel's Hill.



You can support Buffalo Heights with membership

            If you would like to help support Buffalo Height Golf Club through a membership, several options are available.

            Various membership types include: single stockholder $545, single non-stockholder $655, senior with cart $820, student, age 25 and under $225, young adult, age 26-35 $340, stockholder couple with cart $1,315, non-stockholder couple with cart $1,425, senior stockholder couple with cart $1,210, and senior non-stockholder couple with cart $1,315.

            For more information, please call the clubhouse at 763-682-2854.