I recall an event in the community hall where the late Ray Snyder was being honoured, perhaps it was a birthday party, and in a conversation I had with him he diverted praise from himself and made the comment that Benth Poulsen should be known as “Mr. Dalum” in respect to all the community work he had done. Many folks have contributed to the betterment of our community and Benth most certainly has done his share and more. With a creative mind and skilled hands he built many pieces of equipment which were often finished with aluminium paint, as was his distinctive style. When the ball diamond was relocated from the northwest to the northeast corner of the community hall site a new backstop and bleachers were needed so Benth, with help from Svend Andersen, designed, fabricated, and installed those things which still stand as a memorial to his metal working ability and his commitment to getting things done. Another of Benth’s projects which remains in my memory is the “Zamboni” he built for the skating rink which was located approximately where the county grader shop now stands. A barrel mounted on steel runners with a handle for pushing, a rope harness for pulling and a spray bar with burlap sacks to spread the hot water evenly did a nice job of resurfacing the ice and was only hindered in its effectiveness by a limited sup- ply of hot water. It probably never occurred to the children enjoying the skating rink that it was unusual for a country school of fifty students to have such a piece of equipment. Benth’s contributions to community life were not limited to his creative abilities but included participation on Boards and committees as well being at the center of social events where music, dancing and a sociable drink might be included. At his funeral service last Friday, grandson Kyle Poulsen and granddaughter Megan Vooys shared their memories of a devoted and loving family man; a man with a lively sense of humour, twinkling eyes and a ready smile, who will be dearly missed by family and friends. At the luncheon which followed at the community hall many of those old friends had a chance to reconnect with one and other and to pay tribute to “Mr. Dalum”.
As we have seen in recent weeks, our community carries on with the time honoured practice of sharing time together at a luncheon following the funeral service. That social contact is part of the healing process which is important to both the grieving family and their friends and is one of the threads which make up the fabric of a community. These luncheons do not appear by magic, however, and a word of praise to the ladies who put it all together on short notice is well deserved. Also, to those who give of their time and equipment to have the grounds trimmed and tidied represents not only in a sense of community pride, but is a mark of respect for a friend and neighbor. The contribution of the Dalum firefighters who provide traffic control not only offers another sign of respect to a dearly departed community member but ensures a safer environment at an intersection where the regular traffic is neither in the habit of slowing down nor is it aware of pedestrians. Well done, all!
Rita Pallesen seems to be the “go to girl” for collections and she is presently accepting memorial donations for Wagnar Learke Hansen and for Benth Poulsen. Donations in Memory of Wagnar may be made to the Tom Baker Cancer Center and those in memory of Benth may be made to the Bethlehem Lutheran Church at Dalum. Rita is also collecting Co-op till tapes on behalf of the Friendship Club and they should be submitted as soon as possible.
Congratulations to the Reiffenstein family upon the arrival of Kathy’s baby boy. This is the second child for Kathy and partner, Steve Kenney, and the sixth grandchild for Laurie and Joan. Matthew is a little brother for Nate.
A reminder to all those who have attended the Hussar school as a student or as a teacher that the “Final Farewell” event will take place at the school on Saturday from noon until 2:00 pm. There will be a hot dog lunch with a tribute program beginning at 1:00 pm.
Birthday greetings this week go out to Wallace Holmen who we know has developed his culinary skills and can ably prepare some traditional Danish foods including red cabbage and liver paste; we wonder if he will make his own birthday cake or leave that job to Lucy.
The approach to our driveway is quite large and we sometimes wonder if travellers mistake it for a rest stop, judging by the frequency and the purposes for which people stop there. Last week, however, there was a more unusual occurrence when a liner hauling a load of pigs broke down and had to wait at our entry for a few hours before repairs could be made. It was a very hot day and the hogs were beginning to complain before a water tanker arrived to cool them off. Well done, driver, for taking care of your cargo.
The first summer thunder storm of the season arrived with a bang when a lightning strike started a grass fire east of Highway 56, on the road allowance which defines the border between the Wheatland and Drumheller municipalities. The Dalum fire crew responded and quickly extinguished the flames but, until that call, it had been a quiet spring season for our fire fighters.
We have heard that Joan Snyder and Joy McKee are heading to Amsterdam on an adventure which involves an artifact from the Second World War, some family history and a television show. We can hardly wait to get more details!
You may continue to call Gerald and Maryann Rasmussen at 403-823-2036 with your news items or, e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.