Outside Looking In
As I drove to Minneota both Friday and Saturday, it seemed like the number of tractors in the fields nearly outnumbers the vehicles on the highway.
Both days were perfect for outdoor activities and farmers took full advantage of getting their planting underway.
"I finished planting corn on Saturday, but I haven't started on soybeans," said Ross Eischens, who farms 10 miles north of Minneota.
Nearly every field along County Road 10, County Road 24 and Highway 68 (I traveled them all more than once this weekend) had someone preparing for the growing season.
I've learned a funny thing about farmers as I have been trying to educate myself on farm life after having lived in a city all my life; most of them don't like to talk on the record. They are friendly and willing to tell you anything you want to know as long as it doesn't show up in print.
It reminds me of writing about anglers hauling in a big catch; they don't mind telling you where they caught it and what bait they used as long as it doesn't show up in print.
Even if they don't want to admit it, farmers are a competitive group full of pride. And who can blame them. City people have little understanding of how a farm operates, including myself. But I have been shown the light in recent years as I interview them and travel to their farms to take photos.
Food doesn't just fall out of the sky and land on our plates or grocery stores. Someone has to care for the animals and grow the crops. I hope we all can appreciate what farmers do for us.
The 10th annual Minneota Citywide Garage Sale sponsored by the Mascot turned out to be a big success with approximately 25 residences holding a sale of some sort.
"I go to the garage sales every year," said one bargain shopper. "There were a lot more places having sales this year and I found a lot more good deals. Everyone seemed to have more stuff to sell, too."
After not being able to hold a citywide garage sale last year due to the COVID pandemic, many people had two years worth of items they no longer had use for.
One homeowner on the east end of town was selling practically everything they owned, including their house.
"We're going to build a new home in town," the homeowner said as she stood next to a sign affixed to the garage that read: House for Sale.
Some places didn't bother marking prices on their items, instead opting to negotiate in order to get rid of their merchandise quicker. A number of those hosting a garage sale had areas set aside with free items.
Sales were steady throughout the day on Friday and in the morning on Saturday. Things slowed down after that with several other activities going on in town such as the Mudhens opening their amateur baseball season and the Minneota Junior-Senior Prom beginning later in the afternoon.
Former Marshall High School and North Dakota State University football standout Trey Lance was drafted No. 3 by the San Francisco 49ers on Thursday.
While many others drafted players wore shades and strutted up to the stage as if they were already counting their millions, Lance wept as he took in the moment.
San Francisco 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan said aside from Lance's obvious high ceiling was the fact that the team was enamored with other aspects of the young signal-caller.
"When you watch the film, you see such a true quarterback in every aspect of how he plays," Shanahan told reporters. "Then you meet him and you're like, 'Man, this guy doesn't have to be a quarterback. He can go be a CEO of some company.' It's a very impressive thing to watch the skill set he has, just how intelligent he is, how he handles himself. You can tell he's going to impress a football team. He'd also impress a company. He's going to be impressive in whatever he's in."
The selection was a little bit of a surprise as most analysts and so-called draft experts had been announcing throughout the past two weeks that the 49ers were likely going to select Alabama quarterback Mac Jones after trading first-round draft choices this year and next, along with a third-round pick in 2022 to the Miami Dolphins to move up to the No. 3 spot in the draft.
Hall of Famer safety John Lynch, now the 49ers' General Manager told the media: "We were blown away by the person, the aptitude, and the way he carried himself."
Despite having Jimmy Garoppolo as its current quarterback, Lance expressed excitement at the chance to learn behind the veteran.
And guess who was among the early congratulatory messages Lance received? None other than Garopppolo, who showed his class and his understanding of the business aspect of the NFL. Too bad this type of behavior has become a rarity in the league.
Former longtime Minneota golf coach Ralph Hagen texted me a photo of Lance holding up his 49ers' jersey and noted: "The only draft pick who knows where Minneota, Minnesota is."