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The Pioneer Review • P.O. Box 788 • Philip, SD 57567-0788(605) 859-2516 • FAX: (605) 859-2410
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Opinion / Community
Thursday, August 16, 2012 • The Pioneer Review •
Philip, SD U.S.P.S. 433-780
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I don’t remember much aboutfirst grade. It was … er … quite awhile ago. I do remember that itwas held in a one-room schoolabout five miles from home, andthere were five other students. Oneof those schoolmates was my sis-ter, and the other four were all sib-lings from another local family – three girls and one boy, Charlie,who was in first grade with me.As I recall, the bathrooms wereoutdoor biffys with one being forgirls and the other for boys. Therewere blackboards, of course, and apicture of George Washington – you know the one that has an oddblank part that the artist neverquite finished. About the onlyother thing inside besides deskswas an old foot-pump type organ.It was a wheezy thing that weplayed on or with from time totime.Despite the school being named“Harmony,” there was little musi-cal talent amongst the students.Singing together was not a joy sowe didn’t do it much. We did, how-ever, get along okay and were“Harmonious” in that way. Duringrecess, there was a lot of rope jumping. This was the kind wheretwo people swing the rope and oneor two more do the jumping. Ilearned how to do it somewhat, butI don’t think I was ever very goodat it. Everyone had a nickname forthe jumping events, and mine was“Popcorn Popper.”I also assume that Charlie and Isometimes got on the teacher’snerves since she frequently told usto go outside and play when wewere done with our classes orwork. We may have been causingtrouble, I suppose, as unlikely asthat might seem. Anyway, Charlieand I were glad to run around out-side or else in the basement whenit was cold. There was coal in onepart of the basement since theplace was heated with it. As youcan imagine, the school was some-what chilly when we first arrivedin the morning in the winter, but itwarmed up nicely after awhile.Our teacher was my cousin,Marilyn, who was fairly young andquiet, but I think she was a goodenough teacher. She was brightand kind as well and lived with usduring that year. She drove my sis-ter, Pat, and me to school each day.When the roads were muddy, wetook the jeep which was an old rat-tletrap if I ever saw one. If the roadwas apt to be particularly bad atthe creek with all its gumbo, Dadand Marilyn decided we should godown the ridge instead of the road.Then, when the ridge came to anend, there was a very steep hill wedived over to the creek. I didn’t likethat hill. It scared me a bit al-though Marilyn was an excellentdriver, and we never had any trou-ble. Going up out of the creek onthe east side was no big deal sinceit was a more gradual incline.Oh, yes. One of Marilyn’s jobs athome was to light the kerosenelamps every night. She also refilledthem with fuel and trimmed thewicks. Does that give you someidea of how long ago all this was? Yes. It was before electricity ar-rived in rural areas although itwas just a few years prior to that,and we originally had 32-voltpower from a generator for a cou-ple of years before the high lineswere strung our way. In firstgrade, though, we were still onkerosene lamps with a few bright Aladdin ones and some dimmerregular wick ones. I even had asmall wick one of my own and stilldo.Well, after that first year at Har-mony, the neighbor kids movedaway leaving just Pat and me. Forthe next three years, then, theschool moved to the upstairs of ourhouse. Mom was our teacher fortwo of those three years, and theneighbor lady, Myrt, taught us themiddle year. Another boy from sixmiles away came to join us forawhile and lived with us when theroads were bad. After that, Pat wasready for high school so we boughta house in town to live in whenschool was in session although wereturned to the ranch most week-ends and during the summer.Some now think country schoolsare outdated and town school isbetter. I doubt it. A good educationdepends a lot more on teachersthan facilities. Home-schooled kidseven seem to have a slight advan-tage over those taught in class-rooms which I suspect might be theresult of a lot of personal attention.Well, as I said, I don’t remembera lot about first grade at Harmonyschoolhouse, but what memories Ido have are pleasant enough. WhatI learned there gave me a goodenough start to go on for fifteenmore years of schooling and dookay. I have no complaints.
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... by Del Bartels
The gym floors gleam like mirrors. The cleaned lockers are empty,with door hinges aligned. Textbooks are numbered and stacked, readyto be checked to students. Detailed lesson plans are filed. Everythingis ready. Then rings the first bell of the first day of school.Kids bounce over the backs of chairs to plop down at yet-unassigneddesks. Chatter is non-stop. Summer tales are being related withoutbreath over other tellings. Sitting quietly and paying attention to justone speaker is a foreign concept. The first day, probably stretching wellinto next week, is going to be an individual and class-wide struggle toease summer out students’ way of thinking and for them to concentrateon school stuff. Talk time, play time, lunch, naps and the day’s finalbell are the students’ main concerns. A look of painful realization of non-idealistic reality crosses the faces of even the most experienced in-structors. And that’s just with the senior class.For many, last weekend was the end of summer jobs. For most, mus-cles are weary from practices over the last few days for football, volley-ball and cross country. Sleepiness will hit, and hit hard, right afterlunch when the stomach is content, the body is stationary and the re-membrances of classroom routine begin to settle in. Then, after theday’s last class, there is sports practice. New rules and regulations arelisted by the teachers; funny, most of the students can’t remember theold rules and regulations. Signing up for different organizations, forextra curricular activities, for Brownie-point volunteer work, for beingor needing a peer tutor, for clubs –all have to be done by tomorrow, orbetter yet by yesterday. “Oh no, I forgot my gym shoes.” “Where didthey move the pop machine?” “Man, did David grow taller over thesummer!” “Have you see Sharon –and she used to be a skinnytomboy?!” “Dad, absolutely everybody else is driving to school!” “Sorry,Mom, I forgot and had to drive back to get my little brother.” “Dad, Imight need extra sports insurance this year.”Things change. Things stay the same. Most the teachers are back,but a few new faces are behind familiar desks. The cafeteria food isgood, but never admit it. Now they offer breakfast. College remindershave been coming through the mail all summer long, and you’d better join some clubs to be better rounded on your college applications. Foot-ball again, but now you are a captain. Worked all summer ... for college... so you’re still broke. “We were supposed to remember all of last year’salgebra for this year’s trigonometry class?” “She’s dating so-and-so, andI have only eight months until the prom!”To students: high school is crazy –the best crazy that you will re-member your entire life. To parents: the definition of a teenager is the“terrible twos” times seven plus a driver’s license. To teachers: youwanted the job, and during those precious moments when the light bulbbrightens students’ faces, that is when you love it.
Philip Motor, represented by, from left, Pat Berk, Val Smith, Lori Baker and TylerHauk, sponsored a Mexican theme at their Wine at 5:09 booth.First National Bank in Philip was represented by, from left: Mary Burnett, MitziBoyd, Debbie Prouty, Jada Hirsch and Debbie Hansen. FNB had a western theme.Rush Funeral Home, represented by Amber Rush, left, and Josie Rush, offeredcheese based snacks with their wine samples.
Pictures of arrangements are avail-able, with information, tips and anonline shopping cart. Prairie De-signs Floral Studio can also bereached at 840-4810 or firstname.lastname@example.org.E. Baxter plans to hold floral de-sign classes. “People like to doclasses. I like to offer the opportu-nity to do something new, a basicoverview to what floral design en-tails,” said E. Baxter. “Like anyartistic craft, floral design is a lotharder than it looks.” She agreedthat it can be a learned skill to apoint, but does require an artisticdisposition.
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as cheese cake, cheese ball dip andcream cheese rollups was JosieRush. Also serving were GayleRush and Margaret Rush. Golfersand walkers could sign up for adrawing for an elegant men’swatch.Philip Motor sponsored a Mexi-can theme for its booth at the teebox of hole six. Pat Berk, Val Swift,Lori Baker and Tyler Hauk offeredthe wine labeled Skinnygirl San-gria. With it were salsa and fiestadips and a spicy, non-chololate con-coction called Mexican fudge.The tee box at hole one was thesite for the Ravellette Publicationsbooth. Under the theme of the1960s-based television show MadMen, they offered a wine labeledMad Housewife, a white zinfandelfrom California. Their drink substi-tute was a fruit punch, while thehors d'oeuvres were meatballs andstuffed celery sticks. The serverswere Tami Ravellette and BrittneyDrury. Mad Housewife was votedby guests as the prefered wine.Darrel Terkildsen was the black- jack dealer at hole five. Golferscould try their luck at being able toimprove a future golf shot, andstrollers could win a chance for agift certificate. Playing blackjack ornot, guests could sample Con-quista, a Malbec which is very dryred wine, from Argentina.Ingram Hardware was the spon-sor at hole eight. Jerry and Pam In-gram offered succulant pork andchicken from a Holland grill theywere demonstrating. Their tentedbooth was the place for samples of Barefoot Red Mosato, labeled as a“deliciously sweet” wine from Cali-fornia. The Ingram’s booth wasvoted as best of show, the evening’stop sponsored booth.The winning golf team consistedof Bill Slovek, Tara Ravellette,Beaver Scott and Haven Hilde-brand.“It was a great western SouthDakota evening for both golfingand walking,” said Don Ravellette.
Wine at 5:09 golf event
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by Del Bartels
The Philip Chamber of Com-merce meeting, Monday, August13, revolved around the success of this summer’s Philip Festival Daysand the Haakon/Jackson CountyFair and Achievement Days, andhow the chamber can improvethose events even more.Doug West reported, “The fairboard is elated about the PhilipMasonic Rascal Rodeo.” The youthrodeo on August 4 was held in con- juction with the 2012 Haakon/Jackson County Fair and Achieve-ment Days. It drew 236 entries andlasted five hours. West said that itwent very well. At first the organ-izers were going to award just amoney pay back to individual win-ners, but prizes such as halterswere better received by the kids.Chamber treasurer Matt Reedysaid the roping arena is going well,and it is being used a lot, such asfor the matched bronc ride, theyouth rodeo and for weekly ropingevents.The Festival Days weekend costthe chamber approximately $5,000.Reedy said, “That is okay. We kepta whole lot of people in town allweekend long.” Boyd Waara led themeeting’s attendees in agreeingthat Festival Days was a huge suc-cess.Reedy admitted, “I don’t thinkthe winners of the horse races wonenough to pay for gas to Philip.”Waara added, “And I don’t thinkthey care.” The horse races drew alarger crowd than last year. It tookadvantage of the bleachers thatwere rented from Rapid City. Thechamber believes that next yearthe races will be larger in audienceattendance and in participants.Reedy said he believed that thePhilip Volunteer Fire Departmentmight have had its best demolitionderby ever. The audience was largeand there were many contestants.Some of the rented bleachers wouldhave come in handy there.Waara noted, “The blow upgames were a thousand times bet-ter than a carnival, because themoney didn’t leave the town.” Dis-cussion included that some parentswere a bit late to the horse racesbecause their kids were having toomuch fun at the blow up games atFire Hall Park.West said that this last year’sfree dance was the way to go. Hesaid he had heard many people saythat the matched bronc ride wasgood, then all you had to do waswalk downtown for a free dance.Reedy said that more volunteerscould have been used “to spreadsome of the work out, but it was agreat Festival Days.”Leading into the big concern of the meeting, Reedy said, “Thenumber of people was unbeliev-able. We actually had about thesame numbers at the bronc ride aslast year, but they were more com-fortable, had more room and couldsee better.” The hired securityteam had continued to take ticketswell after the bronc ride began.Reedy said that ticked off manylatecomers, people who thoughtthey could get in free and were car-rying their own coolers, but it madethe security worth it.The bleachers, with liability in-surance figured in, cost the PhilipChamber of Commerce about$2,000. Midwest Cooperatives do-nated most of the fuel for five vehi-cles to pick up and to return thesets of bleachers. Now, thosebleachers might not be availablefor next year. The chamber is or-ganizing a letter writing campaign
that shouldinclude local businessowners. The campaign is tocon-vince Rapid City toallow thebleachers to berented again nextyear. Reedy said, “If we are goingto write these letters,we need tohaveas manythank yous aspleases.” Itis hoped that enoughletters might convince Rapid Cityto continue leasingthe bleachers torural westernSouth Dakota com-munities.Those rural communities areconnected, according to Reedy, whorelatedthat authorities with theBlack Hills Stock Showare worried
Philip Festival Days’ success overcastby need for bleachers next year
Kind of on the level, the blackjack table was manned by Darrel Terkildsen. Golferscould try their luck to improve their “lie” on hole number five. Walkers could wina chance for a gift certificate.
that if Philip’s broncride goesdown(in numbers), then sowilltheirs.To purchaseanew set of suchtransportable, allaluminum, allhydraulic bleachers would cost$48,000per set. Permanent bleach-ers, if a permanent arena site couldbe agreed upon, wouldcost up-wards of $55,000 toseat 1,500peo-ple, not counting the cost of con-crete aprons andother items. The nextPhilipChamberof Commerce meeting willbe Mon-day, September 10,at 7:00 p.m., atTheSteakhouse.