Viewpoints

Wed
21
Sep

Brute's Bleat September 21, 2016


Nick Pawlenty left me a fishing note, “They are biting,” along with this photo of a 27-inch walleye he caught about the same time I was fishing Ottertail Lake. I was impressed and just a wee bit jealous! He was trolling using a Rapala and fishing with his father, Ed, who caught a couple of Northerns and missed what he figured was a large walleye.

My efforts at walleye fishing on Ottertail Lake last week Tuesday evening with my brother, Charles, didn’t meet with the success I anticipated. But that wasn’t because Charles didn’t put us on some fish. I had four good strikes in a couple of hours, but failed to hook any of them. I missed the first one using a nighty on a long Lindy rig and Charles caught a walleye using a jig and minnow. After he had several other bites I switched to a jig and night-crawler and got some action, but nothing to show for it. Obviously I need more practice! As the sun was setting, about 8 p.m., we called it a day with a couple of walleyes and a perch or two. The threat of frost for Wednesday morning convinced us we didn’t need to get on the lake early even though Charles loaned me a pair of long johns. There were several trucks in the parking lot that morning, one a guide’s rig which was on the lake when we arrived and still there when we left about 1 p.m.

Wed
14
Sep

Brute's Bleat September 14, 2016


These sunflowers in full bloom pretty much tell me that summer is waning, if not already in 2016’s past. Incidentally they are at the end of a driveway at the former Doug and Theresa Andrus property on Endicott Ave. NW, Maple Lake Twp. (Photo by Harold Brutlag)

Sometimes there’s an advertisement on TV that tickles my funny bone and Farmers Insurance came up with one that more than fits that bill in their “we insure anything” promotion. It’s the one with a variety of dogs doing a water ballet in the living room after one of the dogs turns on the kitchen sink water faucet, flooding the house. I don’t know if it’s selling any insurance, but it sure caught my attention!
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Wed
07
Sep

Brute's Bleat September 7, 2016

Apparently a gremlin got into the Messenger composing room last Monday and changed my youthful fishing buddy’s name, Mike Miller, to read Mike Muller. It was no biggie, but I doubt if Mike Muller could have caught as many sunfish and Mike Miller did. In another fishing outing with Miller, George Palmer and myself last, Tuesday on Maple Lake, Palmer had the hot hand. He outfished both Miller and myself. We caught most of the 20+ sunfish keepers and two crappies on the rock pile using pieces of leeches supplies by Palmer. Steve Loch made an effort last week to retrieve my anchor on the same bar, but commented visibility at 17-18 feet was not good. Even with a flashlight he was unable see more than a couple of feet and find it or the crappie rod and reel I lost in the same vicinity this summer. What baffles me is how can the sunfish find the bait in the total darkness.

Wed
31
Aug

Brute's Bleat August 31, 2016

Maple Lake’s Lakers took another step closer to the finals in the state tournament with an 8-1 win over Waseca Sunday afternoon. Now they are one of 16 Class C teams left and they will meet Region 7A champion Waconia next Saturday, 7:30 p.m., again at the Dassel/Cokato stadium. The Lakers set the tone of the game early when first-sacker Chad Raiche sent a towering home run over the left-field fence with Graham Brown on base via a walk to give them a 2-0 first inning lead. They continued to build their lead to 8-1 at the end of seven innings. The Lakers got another stellar performance out of their right-hander, Jeremy Schmidt, who allowed only one run. He allowed two hits, struck out eight and gave up one walk in the seven innings he pitched. He was relieved by D/C draftee Eric Hanson who struck out three, allowing no hits.

Wed
24
Aug

Brute's Bleat August 24, 2016

This usually is the time of year when the lawns turn brown, waiting for a rainstorm to bring them back to life. Not so this year when I cranked up the lawnmower Sunday afternoon. This passel of mushrooms popped up after Saturday’s rain in one of the many shady spots, offering a stark contrast to their surroundings on a perfect sunny afternoon. They looked like small puff-ball mushrooms which look to be edible, but I’m not that knowledgeable about fungi so I’m passing on these!
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Wed
24
Aug

Letter to the Editor August 24, 2016

Letter to the Editor:
What is going on in down-town Maple Lake? As a member of the Maple Lake Development Committee I am happy to report a lot of genuine business activity in our downtown and adjacent areas in this past year. Did you know we added 6 new businesses? Grandma's Attic, Book Break, Love Inc. thrift store, Orson Electric, R and D Performance, and Relocated Relics. We have also had business relocation, renovation and/or expansion of services! Maple Lake Floral, The Costume Shoppe, Total Care Chiropractic, Pottery Farm, Tracy's Therapeutic Massage, and Shear Attitudes. This is good news for our community. We currently only have one space for rent in our downtown area and one on the highway. Our Farmers Market is going strong and planning new events. It supports dozens of small businesses!
Take a fresh look at Maple Lake!
Tricia Manuel

Wed
24
Aug

Letter to the Editor August 24, 2016

To the Editor:
Every homeowner in Maple Lake has in interest in supporting our school district’s proposed operating and capital projects levies which will be on the ballot for voters on November 8th. These initiatives would maintain the current funding level in Maple Lake schools and help prevent cuts in critical programs and positions. One of the most important reasons we need to support the school’s referendum is because teacher/student ratios are at risk.
It is a fact that property values are closely tied to the strength of schools. According to a survey conducted in 2013 by Realtor.com, 91% of homebuyers cited schools as important in their search. One of five buyers said that they would pay 10% over their budgeted amount for a favorable school (http://www.realtor.com/advice/buy/the-right-school-district-how-much-do-...).

Wed
24
Aug

Letter to the Editor August 24, 2016

Dear Editor,
Summers in Minnesota are a blessing and a curse. While this summer we have had some of the best weather we will experience all year, we have also experienced the deadliest crashes on Minnesota roads. Too often lives are lost in traffic crashes that were completely preventable had the driver just lined up a sober ride.
Over the summer, people aren’t just leaving the bars intoxicated; they’re leaving cabins, fairs and community celebrations. While some may think it’s okay to drive the few blocks home after having just a few beers, or take a quiet country road to their destination, it is never a safe choice to get behind the wheel after drinking.

Wed
17
Aug

Brute's Bleat August 17, 2016


The sunnies weren’t biting with gusto, but this fat sunfish liked the smell of one of Jim’s leeches.

I was impressed with the red hat this riding horse was wearing in Ney Park a week ago. The handler said it was to prevent fly and bug bites on its ears and forehead. Our farm horses, back in the late ‘40s and early ‘50s, were not as fortunate, but some of the threshing crew had full flynets for their bundle teams to ward off the horse and deer flies. (Photos by Harold Brutlag)

I’m beginning to think my honey hole for panfish might be drying up after a couple of hours with Jim Lemieux last Tuesday morning. A slight wind kept us from anchoring on a rocky spot (we kept slipping off) and I think I spent more time trying to relocate than fishing. But, be that as it may, Jim caught enough keepers for a meal and that was what he was after. We had to do a little sorting in the process and his bait, live and dead leeches, was the most effective. I was using minnow heads when I couldn’t seem to keep the sunnies from sucking the earthworms off my jig. . . . A story in my hometown news-paper last week about two fellows catching their limits of walleyes on Ottertail Lake made me drool, just thinking about it. They were fishing with one of the premiere guides in that area, Ross Hagemeister, who apparently is a conservationist at heart. His clients don’t keep any walleyes under 13 inches or over 18 inches.

Wed
10
Aug

Brute's Bleat August 10, 2016


One of my fishing buddies, Michael Miller, and I added these crappies to the live-well last Tuesday morning.

Maple Lake’s Lakers baseball team got a huge grand slam from Donnie Mavencamp Friday night in their game with Loretto. Loretto was leading 3-0 at the time, but Maple Lake loaded the bases with a couple of walks. Loretto elected to change pitchers and Mavencamp put the reliever’s first pitch over the center-field wall and the Lakers never looked back. Laker ace pitcher Jeremy Schmidt threw all nine innings. Hutchinson Huskies gave the Lakers a lesson in hitting in Saturday’s night-cap which they won 13-2. The win propelled the Huskies into the state tournament as did Delano’s 5-2 win over Buffalo in Saturday’s first game. Maple Lake played Howard Lake at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday and Loretto played Buffalo Thursday with winners of both games in the state tournament. The tournament continues through Sunday afternoon at Loretto and then it’s the state tournament at Dassel-Cokato and Hutchinson.
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