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Cancelled by Rain


On this date in 1962 it was shaping up to be quite the weekend in Watford City, with area residents looking forward to two conventions, a rodeo, and a groundbreaking ceremony for the Good Shepherd Home.

Kicking off the weekend was the Northwestern Gudbrandsdalslag, scheduled for 10 am Friday at the Civic Center. This was for former residents of Gudbrandsdalen, Norway and their descendents. At 1, a parade was scheduled, featuring old-time cars, horse-drawn wagons, people dressed in Norwegian costumes, the Badlands Saddle Club, the senior and junior bands from Watford City High School and the school band from Arnegard. The parade was to march to the site of the Good Shepherd Home, east of the city, where at 1:30, the ground-breaking ceremonies were scheduled.

The Badlands Saddle Club Rodeo was supposed to be held on Saturday night and Sunday afternoon at the rodeo arena 15 miles south of Watford City, featuring saddle bronc riding, bareback riding, bull dogging, calf roping, team tying, ladies’ barrel race, junior barrel race and junior bull riding. Also, the North Dakota Flying Farmers and Ranchers were hosting their annual convention there Saturday and Sunday, complete with flying contests, navigation courses, coronation of the flying Farmer Queen, a scenic flight over the North unit of Theodore Roosevelt National Park, and a banquet.

It was set to be a busy weekend, but the best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry – especially when it rains. The fickle weather cancelled out the Flying Farmers and Ranchers state convention and the Badlands Saddle Club rodeo. Both groups tentatively rescheduled for July. The ground-breaking ceremony for the Good Shepherd home was held in the high school auditorium at 2, with no parade preceding it and with no actual breaking of the ground. A fairly good-sized crowd did attend, considering that many people were confused as to where the program would be held and that it was a half hour later than scheduled.

The rain did subside over the weekend, but it wasn’t over. Listen tomorrow to hear more about one of North Dakota’s favorite conversation topics—the weather.

Dakota Datebook written by Sarah Walker