Coca-Cola Classic NTPA Power Pull Nationals

Flags were flying, smoke was rolling and the stands were filling with spectators Aug. 1, 1995, when the McLeod County Fairgrounds in Hutchinson was the site of the Coca-Cola Classic NTPA Power Pull Nationals. Glencoe driver Ernie Lange took his turn on his John Deere 4450.

125 YEARS AGO: 1895

Fred Hutchinson fell from a rope he was climbing and got a bad dislocation of his right wrist.

Iver Birkbek, the popular young clerk at Schueneman's, has rigged up a battery and key and is teaching himself telegraphy.

J.A. Quick on the shores of picturesque Lake Jennie has the finest orchard in this part of the state. He has several Duchess, Wealthy, and a variety of crab trees loaded with fruit, and if not for the heavy wind of a few weeks ago, which blew off a good many apples, he would harvest wagon loads of fruit this fall.

The game of baseball was terribly maltreated by nines from Paige's Players and Hutchinson YMCA. They paraded in a large and varied repertoire of clothes and parodied the national game for two mortal or immortal innings. George Paige umpired. He is an awful poor umpire. If it had not been for him, the score would not have been tied, but it was, and the players couldn't untie it. The police put an end to the game.

 100 YEARS AGO: 1920

Litchfield and Hutchinson, longtime rivals in the baseball field, as well as in other sports, will meet on the local diamond in the first of a series of five games. These two teams are the leaders in this part of the state, owing to the extreme rivalry existing, should draw the largest crowd of spectators of the season. A high-grade professional umpire will handle the game. Dad Chamerlain says, "Each game will be for blood," and Dad knows.

Amendment No. 1, the Babcock Good Roads Amendment is one of the most important things, which will come before the voters of Minnesota next November. The adoption of this amendment will mean the construction in Minnesota as fast as the work can be done of a complete system of hard-surfaced highways. Money to be used in carrying out this plan, if the amendment is adopted, will be raised by a wheelage tax on motor vehicles.

75 YEARS AGO: 1945

Proof there are still big catches of fish in this section is furnished by Clarence Nelson, Henry Rayppy and Tony Friauf with their two-and-a-half-hour catch. It was made at Brown's Lake near Eden Valley. The 25 fish tipped the scales at 110 pounds, with the largest northern weighing 10 pounds and some not far from that figure. A big black bass still weighed 5 pounds when they got him home and on the scale.

With 56 flying missions totaling 517 combat hours, First Lt. Leander Radtke earned the Air Medal with two oak leaf clusters, the Distinguished Flying Cross with one oak leaf cluster, a recommendation for two other DFC clusters, the Presidential Unit Citation and battle stars. The pilot was awarded a well-earned 30-day leave. He did all his flying in the China-Burma-India theater, where he was with the 436th Bomb Squadron of the 7th Bomb Group.

50 YEARS AGO: 1970

The official Friday night store opening policy will not be changed at this time. Members of the Hutchinson Chamber of Commerce retail council tabled further consideration of a change to Thursday night when complications developed. It now appears individual stores will attempt a second night opening and some stores will alter their regular hours to stay open longer in the afternoon to permit more shopping after school hours.

Burglars cracked the safe at Ruzicka's Supermarket in Silver Lake. They made off with $2,900 in cash and checks. McLeod County sheriff's officers said the intruders pried open the rear door with a bar and then did a professional job of "peeling" the door off the store's safe to access the money. 

25 YEARS AGO: 1995

Showing at the State 3 in downtown Hutchinson is "Water World" with Kevin Costner, "Apollo 13" starring Tom Hanks, and "Bushwacked" with Daniel Stern.

Dave Erlandson and Chuck Jones have been promoted to the rank of sergeant by the Hutchinson Police Department.  

The second convenience store/gas station to open in Hutchinson this year, Little Dukes, welcomed its first customers through its doors Aug. 1. Little Dukes, which is next to Taco Bell along State Highway 15 South, is the ninth such store to be opened by Coborn's Inc., the St. Cloud-based company that also owns Cash Wise grocery store.

Looking Back is a weekly column by Kay Johnson, arts and special projects editor, that highlights Hutchinson history. Photo submissions with captions are welcome. Contact the Leader by calling Johnson at 320-753-3641 or email

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