THAT REMINDS ME: Dust storm blanketed GF in '57
Snow was predicted 50 years ago for the middle of March in Grand Forks. Instead, there was a dust storm on March 15, 1957, that was reminiscent of the "Dirty Thirties." The wind, with gusts up to 40 miles an hour, whipped up the dust and reduced ...
Snow was predicted 50 years ago for the middle of March in Grand Forks. Instead, there was a dust storm on March 15, 1957, that was reminiscent of the "Dirty Thirties." The wind, with gusts up to 40 miles an hour, whipped up the dust and reduced visibility to a half a mile.
Nevertheless, the city welcomed fans to the annual state high school Class A basketball tournament in the UND Fieldhouse (later named Hyslop Sports Center). Lawrence Hanson, principal of Central High School, was in charge of local arrangements. The Herald said both the Dacotah and Ryan hotels downtown were full, with 150 rooms available at UND and local motels.
There was a page of tournament photos in the Herald, including one showing referees Harvey Hanson and Russ Burfening wiping their faces with towels at halftime of a game. More than 8,000 jammed into the Fieldhouse for the final game, with Bismarck defeating Devils Lake for the state title.
Greater Grand Forks was growing 50 years ago:
-- The new Grand Forks City Armory with 8,660 square feet of floor space was nearing completion at a cost of $628,000.
-- Norby's of Grand Forks was expanding its downtown department store to include a fourth floor, which was designed by the Grosz and Anderson architect firm.
-- Dedication of the new $18,000 Mendenhall Presbyterian Church was held in East Grand Forks. The church was organized in 1889.
-- The Grand Forks City Council set April 13 as the deadline for a protest hearing on proposed $801,818 paving projects.
-- Optimistic home builders, spurred on by the construction at Grand Forks Air Force Base, planned to build 420 homes in Grand Forks and 110 in East Grand Forks during the summer of 1957.
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Local names in the news 50 years ago:
-- John Haaven, a senior UND Sioux basketball center, became the most prolific scorer in Sioux history as well as North Central Conference history.
-- Art Tweet was chairman of a drive to raise $200,000 for construction of a nursing home in connection with the Grand Forks Home for the Aged. The new home would care for 40 sick or convalescent "old folks."
-- State Sen. George Longmire was speaker at a dinner of Scottish Rite bodies in the Masonic Temple.
-- Robert McConn, treasurer of the local Heart Sunday drive, handed a check for $4,029 over to North Dakota Heart Association.
-- George Phelps was chairman of the annual curling bonspiel here. Sixty-four rinks competed, more than half of which were from Canada.