Ringing In 2017 by Looking Back at 2016

   January 1 — Spartans chosen for the District 3B All-Conference Football first team  offense and defense were Luke Gonsioroski, Shawn Hirst, Matt Packer, Joe Fisher, Austin Braun, Ben Fujimori. Second team players included Josh Stutts, Andrew Craft and Jordan Baxter. Joe Fisher, Ben Fujimori, Luke Gonsioroski and Matt Packer were selected to the All-State Team. . . Melissa Breitbach of the Lady Spartans was selected to the 2015 3B All-Conference volleyball first team. Madison Reddick was selected for the second team. . . The national average of gas prices officially dropped to $1.98 a gallon Dec. 22. These are the lowest gas prices in nearly seven years. Prices in Montana range from $2.99 to $1.98. . .Fallon County Times Coloring Contest winners are: Sylvia Rabbitt – age 4; Keli Melton – age 6, and Kaytlynn Gaub- age 9. . . .High temperature was 35 Dec. 24 and the low was -6 Dec. 27.

   January 8 — Picture: Warm winter temperatures Jan. 3 made for a great day of family fun on Baker Lake. . .Two Baker Junior High math classes participated in an online stock market game during the fall semester. One of the teams came in first place in the state and another team placed 12th out of 116 teams. Members of the first place team were William Rost, Konner Flint, and Kalee Herbst. . . Olga Ehret of Superior Care Villa is pictured with Santa. Santa arrived at Superior Care Villa with treats for everyone. . .The Fallon County Indoor Shooting Range is open. . . High temperature was 41 degrees Jan. 4.

   January 15 — Mayor Clayton Hornung conducted a swearing in ceremony of two newly elected council persons at the Jan. 6 regular monthly meeting of the City Council. The newly elected women are Jodee Pratt and Leigh Ann LaCroix. Outgoing Councilmen are Steve Fradenburgh and Scott Anderson. . .Thirty-seven teams competed in the second annual Southeastern Montana Coyote Calling Contest held Jan. 8-9. First place team was Will Ecord and Joe Teini; second place went to Matt Napton, Jason Bechtold and Justin Bechtold; third place – Jason Haar and Chad Varner; and fourth place went to Chandler Braaten, Sheldon Domagala and Kruz Robinson. The raffle for a $1,000 store certificate to Ace Hardware was won by Justin LaCroix. . .Notice: Fires of any kind are prohibited on the upper and lower Baker Lake.

   January 22 — Rolling Rubber Tire and Truck Service reopened in a new location at 3655 Red River Lane. . .Low temperature was -20 degrees Jan. 17. High temperature was 40 degrees Jan. 13. . .Nurine “Tootsie” Hanson celebrated her 90th birthday Jan. 11. She danced into her 90th decade with her kids, grandkids and great-grandkids.

   January 29 — The Fallon County Fair Rodeo is the best large rodeo in the state and it has the award to prove it. Jan. 16, Baker was awarded the Montana PRCA Circuit Large Rodeo Award for 2015 at the annual award ceremonies held in Great Falls. . .The Baker High School speech team placed first at the divisional meet in Roundup Jan. 16. Team members are Emalee Thurlow, Isaac Rost, Taylyn Dukart, Bo Rost, Tannon Dukart, Marieya West, MaKenzy Shipstead, Taiken Goerndt and Jaden Miller. The drama team took second place. . .Rose Sampson of Baker bowled a 278 Jan. 13. This score ties the current held Women’s High Score set by Esther Meidinger in 1974-75. . .Spartan wrestlers are headed to the divisional tourney Feb. 6 in Shepherd. . . Ellen Rustad celebrated her 95th birthday Jan. 23. She celebrated with family and friends in the dining room of Fallon Medical Complex Long Term Care.

   February 5 — Devon Solberg, a freshman at Baker High School, led the speech and drama team with a first place state championship in Humorous Solo at the State Class B  speech and drama meet, in  Ennis Jan. 29-30. The drama team placed second overall. . .Jan Lovec is the new Baker Chamber of Commerce Executive Director. She began her new job Dec. 9, 2015. . . Baker elementary students celebrate 100th day of school. . .High temperature was 51 degrees Jan. 28. . . Fifty-three prospective volunteers attended the first public meeting to organize volunteers for the Montana High School Rodeo Finals event to take place here June 7-12. . . United Blood Drive held Jan. 20 and 35 units of blood were donated that day. . .Cathy Frye of Ekalaka was the winner of the 2015 Samsung tablet given away by the Fallon Medical Complex Mammography Department. . .Groundhog did not see his shadow, so that means spring will come early.

   February 12 — Spartan wrestlers Ben Fujimori, Spencer Losing, Keegan Kary, Paul Wang and Dalton Lecoe all qualify for state which will be held Feb. 12-13 in Billings. . . .Miss Montana Danielle Wineman, native of Cut Bank, was in Baker Feb. 5 to share her anti-bullying message. . . Baker girls and boys basketball teams will be at the district tournament Feb. 17-20 in Colstrip. . .Gwen Setinc celebrated her 92nd birthday Feb. 2. Gwen was born Feb. 2, 1924 in a small house on the north side of Baker to her parents, Frank and Vivian Seeley. . . . National Boy Scout Week is Feb. 7-13. Shawn Sander is the Scout Master and Scott Rabbitt is assistant Scout Master. Cub Master is Joe Janz and Christina Gaub is assistant Cub Master. . .Darrin Pluhar has been elected treasurer of the National Agricultural Aviation Association for 2016. Pluhar owns Plu’s Flying service Inc., an aerial application business located in Ekalaka.

   February 19 — Mark Kapps, 31, of Plevna was found guilty on count one: sexual assault with a minor, a felony, and count two: sexual intercourse without consent, a felony. Judge Michael B. Hayworth presided over the trial that concluded Feb. 12 at the Fallon County Courthouse in Baker. . .Feb. 15 the Knights of Columbus hosted Fallon County’s 52nd annual Americanism  Program in the Longfellow Gymnasium. Master of ceremonies was Steve Zachmann. . .Fallon Medical Complex Long Term Care residents and staff voted on a king and queen for Valentine’s Day. Kenneth Heinrich was crowned king, and Betty Hill was crowned queen at their annual Valentine party. . .Spartan boys’ and girls’ basketball teams are at their district basketball tournaments in Colstrip, Feb. 17-20. . .Republican candidate for governor, Greg Gianforte, was in Baker Feb. 9 to meet and greet local residents

   February 26 — The Montana Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force will be providing community education regarding the prevention of internet crimes against children when Earl Campbell comes to the Plevna School Mar. 2. . .High temperature Feb. 18 was 68 degrees. . . Herb O’Donnell will celebrate his birthday Mar. 6 at Thee Garage Showroom. . .A salute to our area volunteers is featured in this issue of the Fallon County Times. . .The Lady Spartan basketball team took third place at the district basketball tournament held in Colstrip Feb. 18-20. . .Feb. 20, Baker Wrestling Club hosted their Invitational Tournament. There were approximately 220 kids who participated in the tournament with 40 of them from the Baker Wrestling Club.

   March 4 — The house was packed at the Bulls, Broncs and Barrels Rodeo held Feb. 27. Bronc riders came from five states to compete in the rodeo. The bull riding event saw 26 riders compete for prizes. . .Fallon County will have a new judge presiding in the 16th Judicial District Court. Attorney Nickolas “Nick” Murnion has been appointed by Governor Steve Bullock to fill the judicial seat vacated by Judge George Hess. Murnion is a native of Jordan. . .Temperature was 67 degrees Feb. 27. . .Fallon County Gun Range will hold their grand opening Mar. 5. . . Picture: Thirty geese enjoy splashing around on the skating rink behind Superior Care Villa. . .Baker resident Angel Wyrwas was honored with a beautiful Pendleton blanket during Senior Parents’ Night at the basketball games in St. Labre Feb. 13. St. Labre girls’ basketball player Shiloh McCormick presented the blanket to Angel in honor of McCormick’s grandmother who passed away from breast cancer. Shiloh wanted to honor her grandmother and her family chose to honor a breast cancer survivor from the Baker crowd. . .Craig and Wanda Pinnow had a ewe deliver four baby lambs. . .Baker and Plevna students will take part in the Academic Olympics Mar. 8-9.

   March 11 — Ellsworth Air Force Base, SD, has just released information to the public that all residents living in the Powder River Training Complex region should be advised that the PRTC will be carrying out large force exercise of military aircraft scheduled for Mar. 30-31. During this period, people living in this area can expect to see multiple types of aircraft utilizing the airspace simultaneously. . .Picture: The “Pot of Gold” at the end of the rainbow can be found on Highway 7 south of Baker. Byron and Galina Wolenetz display a hay bale in honor of each holiday. . . .ABC Plus is the newest business in Baker, providing windshield, glass, chip and machine repair. Del and Melanie Espinosa are the owners of ABC Plus. . .Baker Rexall  Drug welcomes Alyse Webber, PHarm. D., to the team as a pharmacist. She and her husband Matthew come to Baker from St. Louis, MO. . .   Janice Buck of Baker was recognized for 15 years of volunteer service as a Hunters Ed instructor by the Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks at a workshop held in Miles City Feb. 11. . . Baker resident Violet Schueler Baird celebrated her 90th birthday Feb. 15. . . Girl Scout Week is Mar. 6-12 and Girl Scouts are pictured in this issue.

   March 18 — Dominating the Fallon County Fair entertainment scene this summer will be the Eli Young Band. The Academy of Country Music Award winning band will perform at the night show Aug. 20. . .Hunter’s Haven Taxidermy Studio opened its doors to business in its new location at 16 Sewall Ave. in Baker mid-January. Licensed taxidermist Justin Cabot provides the only full service taxidermy studio within 100 miles. . . Drury Phebus and “Steer Montana” will both turn 93 years old Mar. 23. . .Baker High School prom King and queen candidates include Spencer Losing, Ben Fujimori, Nic Bohle, Zane Tunby, Alycia Conroy, Madison Varner, Makenzy Shipstead, and Elisa Hautala. . .High temperature Mar. 12 was 75 degrees. . . Baker American Legion Club celebrates its 97th birthday Mar. 18 with a free meal and live music. . .Fourth annual St. Patrick’s Leapin Leprechaun Race was held Mar. 12. There were seven clans (teams) participating. First place team was comprised of Rick and Mona Madler and Pam Owens; second place went to the team of Jeff and Maranda Hastig and Dustin James; and third place – Joe Zacher, Sojourn Keller and Darren Moore.

   March 25 — 2016 Baker High School prom queen and king and Makenzy Shipstead and Spencer Losing. . .Don Schillinger, Superintendent of Baker Schools, was honored at the spring Montana Association of School Superintendents Conference held in Helena Mar. 14-15 as a retiring superintendent. . .Picture: Ten young mule deer enjoying a sunny afternoon in Baker, Mar. 20. . .Baker’s economy is taking a hit as oil, wheat and cattle prices decline. County oil and gas revenue payments are 54 percent lower for the 2015 tax year as compared to monies received in 2014. County schools are also being affected adversely as their oil revenue payments have plummeted at around 48 percent. . . High temperature Mar. 21 was 72 degrees. . .Fallon County has positions open for the Ambulance Board, Salary Commission, and Tax Appeal Board.

April 1 — Don Beck and Liam Robbins, owners of Fallon County Veterinary Service, welcome Nathan Beck, DVM on board the team as a new veterinarian. Beck grew up in  Baker and is a 2007 graduate of Baker High School. . . Montana Senator Steve Daines visited Baker Mar. 21 as he traveled through on his Made-in Montana Energy Tour. While here Daines toured the Diamond Willow wind farm east of Baker. . . Fallon County is under a burn ban effective Mar. 21. . .Unusual wildlife sighted in city limits – small kangaroo – turns out to be April Fool’s story. . . Jule Walker, Plevna K-12 Schools District superintendent, was one of 33 individuals appointed by Superintendent Juneau to assist the Office of Public Instruction in developing Montana’s education accountability systems. . .New staff hired to operate the Baker Equity Co-op elevator include Jared Stedman, Stephanie Steffes and John Miller. . .Fallon Medical Complex received a grant from the Montana State Elks Assoc. for funds to purchase a specialized positioning device to help hold young patients still while taking x-rays. . .Mar. 26, the Easter Bunny shared 2,500 eggs with area children at the annual Easter Egg Hunt.

   April 8 — Sharon Schwartz, 4-H assistant to the County Extension Agent, retired after 22 years of service. A retirement party in her honor was held Mar. 24 in the lobby of the courthouse. . .100 years ago Rev. H.L. Anderson of Minneapolis arrived here to be installed as pastor of the German Lutheran Church in this city. . .Baker High School band and choir students will be at the District Music Festival Apr. 8-9 in Glendive. Plevna music students will be at their District Music Festival Apr. 8-9 in Miles City. . . Lyann Gajeske created a bumper sticker with the slogan “Hay! Eat Montana Beef!” and placed first in the third grade division of the Agriculture in Montana Schools Design contest. She is a student at Plevna. . .14th annual Baker Jam was held at the Baker School gyms April 2-3. The youth basketball tournament drew 46 teams. . .Pastor Mike Davis, Lakeview Baptist Church, and Melissa Rost, song leader Lakeview Baptist and American Lutheran Churches, led songs of worship at the Community Evening of Prayer held Mar. 31.

   April 15 — Town of Baker became City of Baker 100 years ago – April 18, 1916. . . Fallon County health officials report only five confirmed cases of influenza in the area this year. . .Baker Chamber of Commerce and Agriculture will be raising funds to purchase decorative banners for spring, summer and fall seasons to add to the snowflake banners that beautified the city this past winter. Chamber members will be selling taco in a bag or hot dogs with a soft drink during Ace Appreciation Days April 16 to help raise the money. They will also sell raffle tickets for a chance to win either a Savage Mark II .22 long rifle or a Louisiana Smoker. . . Low temperature Apr. 11 was 14 degrees. . . Alice Kay and Delbert Schweigert will celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary Apr. 16. . . A woman from Helena won the $230,000 Montana Cash Feb. 24 jackpot. The ticket was purchased at Reynolds Market in Baker. . . Jim Schillinger of Circle, former Baker resident, was appointed by Governor Steve Bullock to the Board of Hail Insurance. . .Baker auctioneer J.K. Kinsey recently completed his second year of courses at the prestigious Certified Auctioneers Institute.

  April 22 — Plevna 2016 prom candidates are Dylan Sander, Christopher Skogas, Jacob Edgell, Nicole Allerdings, and Jessica Stockett. . . Former Reynolds employee, Steven Ziemer, was charged with stealing a total of $4304 from Reynolds Supermarket. He pleaded not guilty to one count of felony theft, April 5. . . .Otto’s Shoppe LLC is opening April 23. Owners are Jessica and Sheldon Benedict. It was formerly Lawler’s. . . Baker Clean Up Days are April 30 – May 15. . .Baker Chamber of Commerce raffle winners are Pat O’Donnell – Louisiana smoker/grill, and Melanie Espinosa – .22 Savage rifle. . .Girl Scout Troop #2243 picked up trash around the Baker City Park and ice skating rink in honor of Earth Day. Girls pictured are Selena Gallegos, Haylei Best, Makala Gallegos, Harlee Graham, Sadie Rabbitt, Allanna Rabbitt, and Jocelyn Graham. . . Baker hosted 66 firefighters and nine trainers from 17 fire departments from eastern Montana and western North Dakota Apr. 15-16 for intensive training during the second annual Mondak Fire Academy.

  April 29 — Mid-Rivers announced at a meeting held Apr. 21 they will be discontinuing their cable TV service this fall. The company will continue providing telephone, cellular and internet services in the area. . .Jessica Stockett was crowned queen and Jake Edgell was crown king at the 2016 Plevna Prom held Apr. 23. . .High temperature Apr. 22 was 81 degrees. Low was 31 degrees Apr. 20. . .Nellie Rost will celebrate her 90th birthday May 7. . .Reynolds Market is offering free donuts and coffee for moms, Mother’s Day, May 8. There will also be free photos with mom and create a Mother’s Day cake for mom.

   May 6 — There are four candidates running in the primary election for Fallon County Commissioner. They are Kevin Dukart, Dave Havens, Randy Hoenke and Roy Rost. . . .Greg Gunderson has been the vo-ag teacher at Baker High School for the past five years. He is now retiring for the second time. He came out of a two year retirement to help out because the school was in a bind for a vo-ag teacher. . . Baker and Plevna graduates and their mothers were honored at the 2016 Senior Girls Tea hosted by the Baker Homecraft Club May 1. . . .Plevna High School district 4-C track meet will be held May 12 in Baker. . .A retirement party honoring Jan Stickney, Lynette O’Connor and Jean Benner will be held May 14 at the Plevna School. . . . The 2016 Southeastern Montana Health Fair was held April 27. The Health Fair had 500 visitors and over 250 students K-6 from Baker and Marmarth. There were approximately 200 students 7-12 grades also in attendance. Thirty-eight exhibitors offered resources that can help improve your health. Fallon Medical Complex Lab did 357 blood draws during the Health Fair in addition to the 287  blood draws completed during mini health fairs held before that day. . .Baker High School District Track May 14 in Baker; divisional tennis in Baker May 13; and divisional golf in Huntley Project May 9.

   May 13 — Bill and Dora Nelson have started Roaming RV Repair, LLC. He is one of only about 1200 certified technicians throughout the U.S. He obtained his certification from RV Training Center in Florida. and will go wherever repairs may need to be made. The Nelsons are also going to manage the Bowman Haley Campground and Marina. . .The Zombie Fun Run, put on in memory of Nick Helgoth as a fundraiser for Luke Gonsioroski, a high school student currently undergoing cancer treatment, was wildly successful. A total of $35,000 was raised. . .Jan Rustad and Brenda Hansen, Baker elementary teachers, are retiring this year. Jan has taught for 36 years and Brenda for 45 years – 35 of them in Baker. . .High temperature May 5 was 86 degrees. . . A retirement party honoring Brenda Hansen, LaDonna Freimark, Brenda McPhee, Jan Rustad, Greg Gunderson and Don Schillinger will be held May 17. . .Door prize winners at J & M Lumber’s 13th anniversary were Scott O’Donnell – BBQ grill, Joyce Straub and Travis Isaacs – chairs, Juanita Rost – Mother of the Day,  other prize winners were Mike Kirschten, Drury Phebus, Traci Bruha, Karla O’Connor and Michelle Gray. . .Baker Fire Department held their annual awards banquet Apr. 30. Becca Hanks was chosen as the Firefighter of the Year and Tom Muckle received the Chief Award. . .May 4 at the Baker City Council meeting, the Council president presented Kevin Dukart a Proclamation for 22 years as Clerk for the City. . .Picture: Baker High School class of 2010 donated a bench, tables and garbage cans and they are placed at the entrance into the  Baker Rec Center and BHS football field.