Mandan News

Diane Boit: Anderson a three-peat state wrestling champ, 1988

Diane Boit


25 Years Ago – 1988

Neil Anderson has carved a lasting place in Mandan High School wrestling history by winning three state titles. He is the North Dakota Class A State Champion Heavyweight for 1986, 1987 and 1988. A senior, Anderson finished 33-0-1 and has not lost in his last 45 matches. Anderson is the son of Mickey and Diane Anderson, Mandan.

Prior to 1988, Mandan had four two-time state wrestling champions: Harvey Kruckenberg, 1975-76; Paul Usselman, 1975-76; Paul Syvrud, 1981-82.

Neil Anderson, the three-peat State Wrestling Champ in 1988.

Neil Anderson, the three-peat State Wrestling Champ in 1988.

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Another sell-out crowd attended the annual “The Taste” event held at the Mandan Community Center. Tickets were limited to 1,500 participants, who attended either the 5 p.m. or the 7:45 p.m. session, where 33 food service outlets offered delicious food samples from the Bismarck-Mandan area, including the Rockin’ 50s, Checker’s Catering, George’s Bakery, Joni’s Kitchen and the Hong Kong Restaurant. The Taste is a fundraiser for the MHS Instrumental Music Department.


The 1988 Braves Varsity Wrestling Cheerleaders (l-r) Lisa Frohlich, Karen Engelter, Dion Sailer. Standing is Renee Huschka.

The 1988 Braves Varsity Wrestling Cheerleaders (l-r) Lisa Frohlich, Karen Engelter, Dion Sailer. Standing is Renee Huschka.

50 Years Ago – 1963

More than 880 people were served at the 10th annual Buffalo Dinner served in the basement of the Mandan Methodist Church by its Men’s Club. General Chairman of this year’s dinner was Harry Frye; Robert Chase is the club president. Committee chairmen for the dinner included: C.R. Hammond, ticket sales; H.G. VanderVorst, publicity; Darwin VanderVorst, kitchen; Carl Schauss, table waiters; and Earl Vogelpohl, dishwashers; Don Klingensmith and Al Bolt, coffee servers.

MHS senior Milo Trusty has won a state title in the 133-pound weight class at the N.D. State Wrestling Tournament held in Dickinson. Trusty was Mandan’s lone entry; he ended the season with a 21-4 record. Coach of the Braves wrestling team is Bill Vollan.

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A Show Boat theme was carried out at the Revelers’ Club annual Mardi Gras party held at Mandan’s Municipal Clubhouse. The 80 attendees arrived in a variety of costumes, and prizes were awarded to first and second place groups.

Following the Grand March, a group depicting Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs won first place by a vote of all members. Mrs. Walter Tooley enacted the role of Snow White; Norman Christiansen took the part of the Wicked Witch; the Dwarfs were the Jack Norbys, Jack Danzes and the Harland Junkers. (The seventh dwarf was apparently lost.)

Mr. and Mrs. Art Lang received the vote for second place for their costumes as The Lady and the Tramp.

Dancing to the music of the Emil Dockter orchestra followed the 8 p.m. dinner.


75 Years Ago – 1938

After playing a dismal first half, the Mandan Braves basketball team came from behind to win a brilliant 24-19 victory over the Bismarck Demons in a game held before a standing-room-only crowd in the Memorial Building. The Demons-Braves battle began with every appearance of another slaughter of the Warriors by the Bismarck gang, the score being 9-5 at the end of the half. However, a pep talk by Coach Grunenfelder during intermission was enough to turn the tide as the Braves came roaring back to score 19 points in the second half to defeat a surprised Bismarck team. Top scorers for Mandan were Ray Toman, 8 points, followed by “Dusty” Knoll, 10 points.

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According to a preliminary report of the state’s census, North Dakota has 58,215 people looking for jobs, of which 49,128 are males. Cass County with 1,735 unemployed, led all other North Dakota counties. Following Cass were Grand Forks, Ward, Williams- each with more than 1,000 on the totally unemployed list.

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Mandan residents who purchased this week’s edition of the Daily Pioneer read about the 10th Academy Awards ceremony, honoring the top films of 1937. Chosen as Best Picture was “The Life of Emile Zola;” Best Actor – Spencer Tracy, “Captains Courageous;” and Best Actress – Luise Rainier, “The Good Earth.” The year 1937 in film also included the Walt Disney production of the first full-length animated film, “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs,” which became the top money-making film of the year. Incidentally, the top money-making star for the year was 9-year old Shirley Temple, followed by Clark Gable and Robert Taylor.


100 Years Ago – 1913

“The first work toward the erection of the Mandan Post Office building was started on Tuesday when John Etherington started digging the pits for soil samples. Three pits will be dug in order to ascertain what kind of a foundation will be necessary for the new building.

“Miss Barbara Schlinger, who owes her life to the sacrifices made by her brother and sister who permitted skin to be grafted from their bodies to hers, was able to finally leave the Mandan hospital last week, and she is now spending a few days with her sister in this city, Mrs. Paul Wohkittel, before returning to her home at Parkin. Miss Schlinger was terribly burned last November when trying to hurry the kitchen fire, she threw a cupful of kerosene on the flames and an explosion followed, resulting in such horrible burns that one of her arms was amputated.

“The first work on the site of the Northern Great Plains Field Station will begin next week when B. M. Beers of Bismarck, who was awarded the government contract of boring a well, will set up his machinery there. He will need to strike flowing water which will furnish a continuous supply eight hours a day.”


125 Years Ago – 1888

The village of Mandan was organized in the spring of 1881; by 1888 its population was at 2,600.

March 8, 1888: “On Thursday at 3:30 p.m. the thermometer stood at 25 degrees above zero.

“Mr. E. Boley says that the river is about a mile wide at his place and that he never saw it so big before at this time of year. If the water keeps this up for many days, the greater part of it will run off before the river breaks, thus lessening the danger of high water.

“Yesterday a number of teams that were drawing ice from the Missouri river found the water so deep on a part of the ice as to reach the horse’s bodies. Today, the water being considerably deeper, ice hauling has been abandoned.

“We hope that our friends at the Little Heart Valley will be able in the near future to reap an abundance of profit from their oil find. That is to say, it is not exactly an oil find, but it is a smell-of-an-oil-find from the river.

“E. C. Rice says that the vein of coal that crops out at the Little Heart dips down in a northerly direction and under Mandan at a depth of about 150 feet. It is under the Williams’ mine north of town at a depth of about 800 feet. At Little Heart, it reaches the surface. It would seem then, if there is gas and oil at the base of this vein of coal, it is finding a vent at the place where it crops out.”


(To contact Diane Boit, email

A Mandan News ad from 1988 for "The Taste."

A Mandan News ad from 1988 for “The Taste.”