(Above) Farm fire, 1995 - Clear Lake, Ventura and Mason City firefighters responded to a blaze in 1995 at the Herb Copley farm, located on Highway 18 near the Mason City Airport. The firemen, helped by area farmers who used their tractors and machinery to create fire breaks, contained the blaze to a field which had already been harvested. Thanks for the farmers tilling the ground, the fire was stopped less than 100 feet from unharvested corn. At one point, the southerly wind gusts were propelling the fire faster than the tractors could work. At one point, the farmers stopped plowing and speeded up to stay ahead of the fire.
by Michelle Watson
25 Years Ago
A bright idea should have downtown Clear Lake attracting shoppers this holiday season. Main Street Clear Lake has announced it will hold its First Annual Christmas By the Lake Lighted Christmas Parade on Saturday, Dec. 9. The event is attracting just the attention organizers hoped for. Fifteen floats have already been signed up to participate in the event, said Kim Holtz, Main Street Clear Lake coordinator. All floats must be lighted. The parade is only part of the plans. The Chamber of Commerce’s Retail Committee is making plans for live and lighted window displays, in-store specials and free cookies and cider for shoppers. Horse-drawn carriage rides and carolers dressed in period clothing are also part of the fun.
Jim Ransom, a former Clear Lake City Councilman, V.F.W. Commander and tireless volunteer, has been elected as the 1995 Citizen of the Year by the Clear Lake Rotary Club.
The Clear Lake School Board will meet in special session in the Central School Library Media Center for the purpose of hearing preliminary cost estimates on the possible remodeling, renovation or eventual replacement of the Central School building.
Better late than never, says former Ventura Mayor Bob Wolfram. The familiar face in Ventura politics has announced he is hoping to be elected to the Ventura City Council Nov. 7 as a write-in candidate. Three incumbents and one newcomer have filed election papers for the Council races. Darwin Avery, Norman Held and Frank Rayhons are hoping to be returned to the Council, while Robert Formanek is challenging.
Galilean Lutheran Church, of Clear Lake, is looking for talented individuals interested in performing live in a “coffee house” environment.
Six Clear Lake High School singers have been selected as members of the All-State Chorus they are, Kelly Oulman, Audrey Hill, Jesse Reimer, Jayme Sedars, Kyle Smith and David Severtson. Scott Flatness will play tuba in the All-State Band and Carolyn Nicholas will be a flutist in the All-State Orchestra.
It wasn’t easy, but the Clear Lake Lions will take the victory. The Lions defeated Charles City, 14-6 on a cold Friday night to improve to 5-1 in District play and set up “The Battle of the Century,” with New Hampton for the final Class 3A, District 3 playoff spot. The Lion defense was outstanding holding the Comets to 66-yards of total offense. Tom Rauk and David Doebel led a defensive line that held the Charles City runners to 25-yards. Justin Washburn also snagged an interception.
Tom Zirbel will return to the State Cross County Meet. Zirbel finished ninth with a time of 17:05 at the 2A District Meet. This is the second year in a row for the junior to run in the State meet. The rest of the boys team ran well enough to capture 11th place in the 26 team field, with 283 team points. Philip Burgart finished 60th with a time of 18:28.
District play opened for the Clear Lake volleyball team as they traveled to Forest City. The journey ended the season for the Lions as they lost 3-1. For the Lions, Krista Fritz had a well rounded game, serving 100 percent with an ace, as well as collecting 10 kills and seven blocks. Erin Pleggenkuhle tallied 14 assists and Nicole Young had seven digs.
50 Years Ago
Cheering on the Ventura Viking football team this season is Deb Lallier, Amy Peterson, Jane Ziesmer, Jill Anderson, Deb Hentscher and Renee Roenfanz. The girls have something to cheer about this season as the team is currently 3-0-1.
Sue Ransom was crowned the 1970 Homecoming queen at Clear Lake. The enthusiasm carried over to a 13-8 victory over the Algona Bulldogs.
Stanley and Reinhardt Anderson announced the sale of the Clear Lake Car Wash on Highway 18 to Mr. and Mrs. Ken Balsar.
The Lake Park Tap and Grill is again being operated by Mr. and Mrs. Alton Nelson. Mr. and Mrs. Max Zirbel were the former owners. The Cafe is under the management of Fern E. Meyer.
Howard Oehlert, Democratic candidate for supervisor was the guest of honor at a dinner held at the Holiday Motor Lodge. There were 156 persons present at the event honoring the Clear Lake farmer.
90 Years Ago
C.A. Knutson and Ray Sandry will motor to St. Louis to the World Series games of baseball between the Athletics and Cardinals.
The most dangerous thing on the roads around Clear Lake these days is a six-cylinder car run by a one-cylinder brain.
The “good old days” in Clear Lake were those when you knocked on the front door to find out if the family was home on Sunday afternoon. Now you look in the garage.
North Lakeshore is to be graced by a $30,000 residence, now in process of erection by Decker of Decker Packing Plant, of Mason City.
Fred Davis has a new Ford truck. He is now better prepared than ever to handle with promptness and dispatch all kinds of trucking and dryage.
100 Years Ago
Ventura is rapidly recovering from a terrible fire that swept over that little city Monday, which raged from 3 p.m. until late at night. The fire was discovered in the Frank Baumeister barn, believed to have been caused by smokers there. School boys and others have been smoking there in the past and several times had been ejected from the building. A bucket brigade was formed. The intense heat of the burning kerosene tank containing 10,000 gallons exploded setting the stock yards on fire. The men who braved the smoke and heat for several hours remained on the roof of the Woodford Wheeler Lumber Co. saved that firm many thousands of dollars damage. Clear Lake firemen responded lending their efforts.
Death has removed from our midst another old soldier, another one of the few remaining men who offered their lives during the Civil War, the Rev. W.D. Hartsough. Death also sought out one of Clear Lake’s pioneers, Amos Colburn.
R.H. Holt has apples for sale at $2.50 a basket.