Diamond Truck Equipment, on 27th Ave. East in the Dickinson Energy Center industrial park, has been modifying and customizing trucks and equipment since 1964. They are now serving the third generation of their customers. Owner Gene Hoyt said, "I enjoy the people and the families. I've seen people come and go. People we did work for years ago, now we are dealing with their kids and grandkids."
Kids are encouraged to act up at Josh Nichols' Acting Up! studio in Park Square Mall in downtown Dickinson. Nichols began offering acting classes last fall, and his second series of classes started in mid-January, 2017. "It is necessary for youth in the community to have various and diverse sets of skills," Nichols said. "Acting provides a different skill set for them. Starting them early bolsters the community. I began acting in college, but if students become more involved earlier, it is better for them."
Old meets new at the recently opened Greene Goods and Gifts, located in the former Green Drug building at 16 West Villard in downtown Dickinson. "We wanted to keep with the history of Greene Drug. We have vintage, and we have made-to-order items," said Mary Anderson, executive director of ABLE, Inc. ABLE, Inc. is the service provider that operates Greene Goods and Gifts. ABLE, Inc. also operates the ABLE Thrift Store on West Villard. But they wanted a new store to showcase their made-to-order, Pride of Dakota textile products, which are made at their Bowman site.
When Johnny Conlon looked at the building across the alley from his home in Richardton, he did not just see an empty building. He saw an opportunity. On Oct. 28 of last year, Johnny's Café opened at 246 North Avenue East in downtown Richardton. "We needed a café in town. I've seen the vehicles come and go when it was closed. I thought, 'Gosh, I could do that,'" Conlon said. Conlon is originally from Dickinson, and wherever he has lived and worked, he has worked with food.
Have you talked to Cortana lately? Cortana is the annoying avatar that hitched a ride on your Windows 10 operating system. She is like that smarmy kid you knew in elementary school, who hung around trying to be your BFF, and then turned snarky when you turned your back. The one who always raised his hand to answer questions, always shoved ahead in the lunch line, and always thought he knew everything there was to know about everything.
Is it me, or are the Minnesota sports teams cursed? Let's think about this. Blair Walsh, the kicker for the Vikings, finished the 2015 season with a whopping 87.2 percent average. He is one of the top 10 kickers in the NFL. In fact, ESPN has him at No. 8 in this year's fantasy rankings. Not shabby, right? But then on Jan. 10 in the playoffs, with seconds on the clock and a nearly sure-thing Super Bowl berth on the line, Blair lined up a 27-yard field goal, to kick for the win. And missed. Whaaaaat?
Don't you just love back-to-school time? Fresh boxes of crayons. Notebooks with cute puppies or cute boy bands on the covers. Pencils with erasers that have not yet been erased into nothingness. And then there is school itself. If you are in elementary school, you don't get much choice in your classes. But you get recess. And if you are in junior high, senior high or college, you get to pick out your classes. You still have recess, too, but it is called phys ed, and you can choose cool stuff like volleyball or folk dancing.
The crickets arrived last week. And, by Jiminy, it’s good to have them back. Crickets mean that summer is at its peak. That it’s warm enough to nap on the grass, without needing a goose down comforter. And you can wish upon a star, too, while listening to the cricket concerto. So how much do you know about crickets? Do you know why they sing? Do you know how they sing? OK, people, it’s time for the Cricket Quiz. True or false: only male crickets chirp.
What do computer code and steampunk fiction have in common? A Dickinson native, now living in the Phoenix area, who writes both, that's what. You know about computer code. That is the stuff which makes life, as we know it, work properly. It is the DNA of all things non-living. Steampunk is a neo-Victorian style of design and storytelling that the cool kids have embraced. It began with H.G. Wells and continues with movies like "Wild, Wild West." And with author Vaughn Treude.
Last week we were the proud parents of 1,500 ladybugs. That is because we also were the unhappy enablers of a gazillion aphids. Actually, aphids are measured in gigabytes. With the emphasis on bites. For about 30 years, aphids have been our biggest garden crop. Slugs run a distant second. Oops, bad choice of words. Slugs slog along slimily, but they do not run. Because they only have one foot. That foot covers the slug’s entire undercarriage, though, so what it lacks in speed it makes up for in stickiness. With the emphasis on sticky.