FACES AND PLACES: Going strong
MENTOR, Minn. -- Despite a diagnosis of congestive heart failure, Duaine Sanden isn't taking much of a breather. Since his diagnosis of CHF last fall, Sanden has continued to juggle several jobs, from working as a weekend radio personality for KC...
MENTOR, Minn. -- Despite a diagnosis of congestive heart failure, Duaine Sanden isn't taking much of a breather.
Since his diagnosis of CHF last fall, Sanden has continued to juggle several jobs, from working as a weekend radio personality for KCCN Radio, to selling advertising for Leighton Broadcasting, to running the Maple Lake (Minn.) Pavilion.
While Sanden continues to keep a hectic schedule, he does try to be better organized since his hospitalization at Fairview Southdale Hospital in Edina, Minn., in late November 2009, he said.
"I try to plan my trips a little better to Grand Forks so I'm not back and forth as much." Sanden, who lives next door to the Maple Lake Pavilion, has lived in Mentor since 1997. For several years, he was the guardian and caretaker of Katherine "Kay" Schuh who owned the pavilion for 67 years.
Sanden met Katherine Schuh in the 1960s when he was selling radio advertising and the two became good friends. In 2006 Schuh died and left the pavilion to Sanden in her will.
During his tenure as manager and owner Sanden has worked to revitalize the Maple Lake Pavilion and make it a vibrant part of the community. From 1949 to 1978, the pavilion hosted weekly dances that drew as many as 1,800 people.
A Johnny Holm dance held this past May attracted more than 1,500 people to the pavilion, breaking the single-day attendance record set July 6, 1965, when the Everly Brothers performed, Sanden said.
Besides the dance, he has hosted family events, wedding receptions and an arts and crafts show at the pavilion this summer. The arts and crafts show, held last weekend, annually draws from 4,000 to 5,000 people, Sanden said.
The pavilion, which features a 40-feet by 80-feet hardwood floor, also is ideal for both dancing and rollers skating. Sanden has 288 pairs of roller skates, a few of them with wooden wheels, available for skaters to use.
Radio veteran, fair guy
When Sanden isn't promoting and running the pavilion, he's at his other job in Grand Forks working for KCNN. Sanden has worked in the radio industry in the area for 51 years, beginning his career at the former KILO radio station when he was a Grand Forks Central High School junior. He now hosts a program on KCNN from 6 a.m. to noon on Saturdays and Sundays.
When the football season is finished, Sanden, moves on to broadcasting basketball and hockey games in between, he records area high school holiday concerts for broadcast during the Christmas season.
Sanden also has long has been an advocate of county fairs in North Dakota and Minnesota, serving on the Grand Forks County Fair Board. Sanden also has is involved with fairs in Minnesota, doing fireworks displays for the Polk, Kittson and Marshall County fairs.
Whether he's broadcasting high school games, selling advertising or hosting events at Maple Lake Pavilion Sanden is in his element when he's dealing with the public.
"I just enjoy being around people," he said.
Reach Bailey at (701) 787-6753; (800) 477-6572, ext. 753; or send e-mail to email@example.com .