With the snowfall that we recently experienced it has been interesting to see a few snowmobiles out and about.
I don’t remember a lot of things, since my bout with encephalitis, but I can remember back in the early 70’s that we would often see 50, 75 even up to 100 snowmobiles a time or two out on the countryside taking part in trail rides. (Snowmobiles from other areas here in southern Minnesota, Blooming Prairie, Albert Lea, and Owatonna, would also visit the Geneva area as well.)
Larry Pence, one of our former residents, had bought the Geneva Hardware Store from Myron Anderson in 1972 and went on to develop a large snowmobile business in Geneva, both of new and used snowmobiles.
John Hohansee helped repaired a lot of snowmobiles over the years and eventually bought the business and operated it until June of 1979, when they sold the business to Cliff Tufte.
Back in those early years, there were a couple of men from the Geneva area, Ed Possin, and my father, Curt Schember, who would go out during the daylight hours on Friday or Saturday and figure out a trail where the snowmobilers could travel later that night. One person would lead the ride, and a couple of other people would “bring up the rear” so that if there was trouble with a snowmobile, they could try and lend a helping hand.
Geneva Lake was an area that was often visited, as was “the big hills,” which is located west and little bit north of Geneva, a short distance from where the LaVerne ”Swede” & Zola Wayne’s farm site was located.
Sometimes they would even haul wood to a site they planned to later visit that night, so that they could start a campfire, which really felt good sometimes when the temperatures were really cold and the wind was blowing. Back in those early years of snowmobiling, there were not the snowmobile suits, boots, gloves and helmets to wear to keep warm with like we see today.
Back in those early years of snowmobiling, there were not the snowmobile suits, boots, gloves and helmets to wear to keep warm with like we see today.
The snowmobiles also came in handy a number of times and offered assistance to some of the local people when the roads became impassable. They hauled milk cans into the Geneva creamery, as well as a few groceries from time to time.
The snowmobilers would also travel to the Clarks Grove area, sometimes to attend the annual Abelskiver Supper, as well as ride out to Beaver Lake, or maybe even St. Olaf Lake, especially during the annual fishing contest, in February.
Speaking of fishing contests, the Geneva Fastpitch Softball team hosted the Beaver Lake Fishing Contest in January for a great number of years. The event helped the players earn money to help pay for their summer softball league schedule and tournaments.
The players would visit many of the area business establishments and such seeking donations for the afternoon drawing that would be held. They would also sell tickets for a drawing that included a number of cash prizes, as well as a GRAND PRIZE, which was a brand new automobile.
The softball players would go out early on Sunday morning and start drilling holes in the ice for all the fishermen, as well as set up a concession stand.
For a number of years the Beaver and St. Olaf Lake fishing contests were held two weekends in a row in February. One week the fishing contest was held at Beaver and the following week at St. Olaf, or vise versa.
Later it was decided to hold the contests the same day, one would start about noon, if memory serves me right, and once that was over, everyone would move on to the other site.
This year the St. Olaf Lake Fishing contest will be held on Saturday, February 11, starting at 2:00 that afternoon. From what I have been hearing, I don’t believe that a fishing contest will be held at Beaver Lake this year. I guess everyone will have to take their fishing poles to St. Olaf Lake and try their luck at catching the big one there.
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This weeks’ birthdays and anniversaries include:
Thursday, February 9th: Emily Eder, John Warnke, Donnavon Eaker, Laura (Edwards) Baudoin, Brad Lerum, Kelly Lageson, Heidi Nelson, Karen Ibberson,Tami Sorenson Hansen, Jay Wangsness
Friday, February 10th: Brooklyn Jo Baudoin, Brett Mitchell Kubiatowicz, Greg Hagen, Abbey Jensen, Tom Wayne, Dean Reiter, Michael Glienke, Wayne Osmundson, Rachel Strand, Judy Thostenson, Peggy Talamantes, Greg Nelson, Madison Johnson, Dick & Mary Ann Ewing
Saturday, February 11th: Megan Pence, Jet Wayne, Neil Douglas Schmidt, Donna Wilker, David Dunn, Julie Christensen, Rhonda Thompson Christensen, Steve Gallentine, Earl Cleven, Teresa Knudson Pratt
Sunday, February, 12th: Gail Skroch, Joe Moon, Michael Hanson, April Van Riper, Rick Borchert, Eugene Kruckeberg, Travis Wayne, Jessie Olson, Greg Oswald, Taff & Jean Worrell, David & Carolyn Hanson
Monday, February 13th: Cobi Gowlland, Becca Spurr, Greg Spurr, Jim Brocker, Eric Olson, Linda Ingvaldson, Bonnie Jensen, Brian Rechizigel, Anita Kes
Tuesday, February, 14th, Valentines’ Day! Angie Entwisle, Michelle Peterson, Matthew Reiter, Angela Westrum Lair, Bob & Mary Macho, Gene & Linda Pederson
Wednesday, February 15th: Kloe Renee Wacek, Nancy Cornelius, Patty Kunkel, Jamie Kunkel Riley, Eric Olson, Adam Warnke, Ron Jensen, Michelle Hanson, Angie O’Byrne, Elina Butler and John Pfaff
Thursday, February 16th: Olivia Wilkenson, Delores Hemingway, Marian Horan, Jesse Lund, Wayne Jensen, David Peterson, Sara Miller, Sarah Nelson, Ian Oolman, Tanya Callahan, LeAnn Hanson, Donald & Dory Hunt
Friday, February 17th: Payton Marie Knudson, Toni Wayne Smith, Nancy Johnson Erickson, Thomas Farr, Keith Wayne, Dave VonGorkom, Dawn Pence Gross, Brian Dobbertstein, Joan Richards, Joan Kaphers, Michelle Cortinas, Carolyn LaFaye, Shannon Weckwerth Pacholl, Alvin & Cheryl Cooper
Saturday, February 18th: Karson Kenneth Benning, 2015; Zola Wayne, Kris Munson McDonald, Janice Waage, Jamie Kunkel Riley, Brad & Rachel Lerum
May all the good wishes that you receive on your special day bloom in your heart and bring you joy!