Class of '57
April 2010

Dear Class,

Well, I got an alert today that our 3rd class letter was due.  We didn’t even get the 2nd one done.  It is very hard to write a letter when no one has any news to contribute.  So, I will just write a letter to a friend—of which you all are counted.  (Don’t know if that sentence makes any sense!)

I have done several things with and for Gustavus so I will start with those:

First was the Royal Affair, held last November 14.  It was a smashing event!  The food was out of this world.  We had Filet Mignon!  Yummmm!  The silent auction was so much fun—probably the best part was talking to Gusties from many decades.  My daughter, Carol Nelson Wahlstrand class of 1990 had a baby on October 17 but she and her husband Carl made it to the party!  That is dedication.  (The baby, by the way, is a girl—named Reese Clementine.)  I think Clem is smiling on that one.  I did bid on several things, but was not the high bidder on any of them so I went home empty handed.

The next event was Christmas in Christ Chapel.  I brought my cousin Mary Mattson Hanson—1953.  She had never been to one before and thought it was marvelous.  And it was.

Of course, I had to go down for St. Lucia Day.  The weather was lousy and it took me three hours to get there!  I missed the chapel service completely.  I was fit to be tied!  I live in Shoreview and that is the exact opposite corner and had to travel across 694 to 169—bumper to bumper.  Such fun!  Other than that, it was a very nice day—good food—good company.  There were several fellow classmates in attendance, but I don’t dare start naming them because I will forget someone for sure.  (I am also very proud when I see classmates at Gustavus doings.)

This spring (yes, I said spring—it is finally here after a very long, cold winter!) the GLA again sponsored Breakfast with the Easter Bunny.  Carol and I took Rory (age 2) and Reese (age 4 mo. at that time) and brought cousin Kajsa (age 9) along to help.  Rory was a perfect age.  She LOVED the bunny.  She got away from us and we saw she had gotten in front of everyone in line and was sitting on the Easter Bunny’s lap!  Shy kid we are dealing with here!

A friend of mine, that sings in my Larks women’s group and also in my Senior Choir, said she is in an exercise group with JoAnn Hector Broom.

Gustavus did send me some news right about Christmas time for our January letter.  Here it is:  Diane Domes Peterson and her husband, Leo, live in Cottage Grove, MN and are both retired.  Peace Johns Finlayson and her husband, Richard, live in Rochester, MN and are also retired.  Clarice Johnson Rossow and husband, Maynard, live in Ft. Dodge, IA and are retired too.  Dick Gastler and Peggy live in Duluth.  Their son was applying for the Ph.D. program in physics at Boston University.  Carolynn Erickson Townsend lives in a care facility in Highland Park, NJ.  Ted Granquist also lives in Rochester.  He is in his 32 year in hospice work.  He is a volunteer in the Mayo Hospice program.

I hear from several of you with emails and I love it!  I know Pat Truhn Schumacher’s kids are planning a big 75th b’day party for her the end of April.  Phyllis Holmberg Olsson and husband, Bill, have been on a month long trip and have just gotten home.  I see Barb Carlson Glenzinski at Orchestra Hall at coffee concerts for the Minnesota Orchestra.

Roxanne McLaughlin Mellema and husband, Dale, live in Walled Lake, MI.  They have spent part of the winter in Texas but are now back home.  Marilyn (Johnson) and Roger Bertelsen live in Plymouth and spend the winter in Florida—as do Roger and Jo (Spooner) LundbladGlenn and Lois (Larson) Mauston live in Florida but manage to get here every now and then.  Marian Hennix Gabel lives here in the summer and spends her winters in The Villages in Florida.

I have taxed my poor old brain to the max.  Maybe I will start making a list for the next letter.  By the time you get this Easter will have come and gone.  I love knowing the full meaning of Easter.  I will spend the whole morning in church with wonderful music and lots of people.  I know that many of you will too.

God bless you all this Easter Season.  Don’t forget Gustavus.  The Annual Fund for this year closes May 31 so please get in your donation.  Thank you in advance.  I always give my gift at Christmas.  Then I never forget when or if I did.  Maybe some of you do the same thing.

As you can see—we need your input badly!!!!  Ha!

Love, your old (and getting older) class agent,

Marlys Mattson Nelson

5644 Heather Ridge Ct.

Shoreview, MN  55126


Marlys is correct!

It is very hard to write a newsletter when no one gives you any news!  There are nine of us on Facebook and I put out a call for any info to those classmates and got one reply.  Atta girl, Lois!  Here’s her tidbit—Glen and Lois Larson Mauston have a grandchild who will enroll at Gustavus in the fall.  Casey is their first grandchild to go to Gustavus.  Lois writes that on a recent excursion to Chicago with family, Casey sported a hoodie from Gustavus.  Her parents are both Gusties and she’s been to tennis camp several times so the decision was not too hard.

Dennis and Vada (Peterson) Carlson are in Marco Island for three weeks.  They’ve been visited by their daughter and two grandchildren so have been busy shopping and doing teenager” things.  Denny sent me an article that appeared in the Star Tribune about Denny Kumlin written by Dennis Anderson in his Outdoors column entitled “Ducks, many or few are at the heart of it.”  It talks about Denny growing up in south Minneapolis, but becoming an avid duck hunter through the influence of his father and grandfather.  However, I always bristle a bit at phrases such as “Denny Kumlin and other hunters of his generation.”  It sounds too much like the doctor’s “at your age.”  Besides, Dennis Anderson doesn’t look a heck of a lot younger than we are in his photo!  Nevertheless, this is really a great article and if you want to read it yourself, Google it at Star Tribune.  It was printed on October 2, 2009.

Barbara Ford Olson works one day a week at the St. Cloud VA Medical Center.  She also takes lessons in jazz piano at McPhail and plays violin with the American Swedish Institute’s Spelmanslag.   Sue Soldin Thorsheim doesn’t get back to Minnesota very often as all of her family are now gone.  She does still have a sister in Illinois.  She spends a lot of time attending athletic events for her grandchildren.  Soccer seems to be the big interest and one grandson is playing on an Olympic Development team for his age group.  Phyllis Fox Paulson takes an annual family trip to Brookside in Park Rapids and this year, Don and a grandson took second place in the Adult-Child Golf Tournament.  They’re busy with grandchildren’s athletic, dance, karate, and band events.  Beverly Bloomquist Todaro has established a routine in her new home near Olympia, WA that resembles her routine in DC—playing tennis twice a week and playing “duet” piano with a friend.  Her daughter lives in Utah and her son near Tacoma so they see them often.  Carol Rylander Farrell says that she and Jim are “tribal elders of four generations of extended family.”  Yes, that is correct—she has two great-grandchildren.  Her four children all still live in Colorado but the grandkids are fanning out to other areas.  That makes for good vacation planning.

Judy Lund Erdman is a woman after my own heart—her Christmas letter always arrives after Christmas!  It always has a photo of the entire family and they are so beautiful that it could be a promo for “family of the year.”  Bob’s influence is strong in that this is a basketball family and, yes, Judy attends games all winter long.  Marilyn “Marcy” Rhyne Herr was recently honored with a “hanging” ceremony at the courthouse.  Her portrait was officially hung in the gallery of past judges.  Her house was also selected to be on a five house Christmas tour and was professionally decorated for the occasion.  Approximately 1200 people trekked through her dwelling.  This is the summer that Marlys, Marcy, Bev, Vada, Judy and I take our every other year trip.  We started this after our 35th class reunion and, I believe, it is our ninth one.  We’re going to spend a week in Ashland, Oregon, (home of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival) and visit Bev in Washington.

That’s all of the class news that I’ve been able to glean.  I used Facebook and Christmas letters.  I’d like to say something about everyone but you’ve got to send me “stuff.”  How about adding me to your Christmas card list, joining Facebook, or sending me an email?  I’d love to hear from you and promise to send on the news.  Don’t forget the Annual Fund is coming to a close.  If you haven’t sent in your donation, do it now.  Hoping to hear from you soon—

Nancy Reiter Grimes

136 Birnamwood Drive

Burnsville, MN  55337

Campus News

Gustavus Announces Major Building Projects

At its Monday, Jan. 25 meeting, the Gustavus Adolphus College Board of Trustees voted unanimously to move forward with three major building projects.  The College will erect a new 125,000 square foot academic building with a large 3-story atrium at the center providing natural light to many of the spaces.  It will qualify for a “gold LEED” qualification as a green building.  This will develop a mall extending west from its iconic Christ Chapel.  It will house the largest departments on campus (economics and management, psychology, and communications).  Also, plans are under way to renovate A. H. Anderson Social Science Building.  Construction timelines for the projects are not yet finalized, but the College expects to break ground on the new academic building late this spring.

The effort is a significant early implementation step of Commission Gustavus 150, an innovative, constituent-based strategic planning process that has engaged hundreds of alumni, students, faculty, staff, and other stakeholders over the past year.  “These projects will greatly enhance learning and teaching, student recruitment, and institutional advancement for many years to come,” said President Jack R. Ohle.

Alumnus, Kurt Elling ’89, Wins Grammy Award

Kurt Elling, a 1989 graduate of Gustavus Adolphus College, took home his first Grammy Award Sunday, Jan. 31 at Staples Center in Los Angeles, Calif.  Elling won the “Best Jazz Vocal Album” category for his album Dedicated to You: Kurt Elling Sings the Music of Coltrane and Hartman. This year marked the ninth time Elling was nominated for a Grammy.

Elling typically performs annually at Gustavus and did so most recently on Oct. 10, 2009 in Jussi Björling Recital Hall.  He has also had the distinct honor to perform in front of President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama and their 350 guests at the White House State Dinner on Nov. 24, 2009.

Admission News

Applications for next year are ahead of where they were last year at this time which makes Mark Anderson ’66, the director of admission, very happy.  We graduated two very large classes in the last two years so we need to have somewhat larger classes in order to maintain our enrollment at about 2,500.  Mark Anderson will retire at the end of the academic year so a search is going on to replace him.  Gustavus has had only three directors of admission since 1950 (Howard Holcomb ’49, Owen Sammelson ’58, and Mark Anderson ’66) which is quite an amazing track record.

Attend a Chapter Event Near You!

There will be Gustavus alumni chapter events in the following cities:  New York, April 22; Boston, April 25; Chicago, May 3 and Denver, May 4.  President Ohle will be attending most of those events so we hope that you will make an attempt to attend and hear what he has to say.  He is providing outstanding leadership!

“Come on You Gusties” Breakfast

Once a month, Gusties gather for coffee, breakfast, and great conversation along with a campus speaker.  All Gusties are welcomed and invited to the breakfast, third Wednesday of the month, 8-9:30 a.m. at the Doubletree Hotel, Minneapolis-Park Place, 1500 Park Place Boulevard.  Cost is $10 at the door.  Upcoming speaker:  Virgil Jones, director of multi-cultural programs.

Upcoming Events

  • Apr. 10 – Gustavus Jazz Lab Band Home Concert
  • Apr. 11 – Gustavus Symphony Orchestra Home Concert
  • Apr. 22 – New York Chapter Event – The Core Club
  • Apr. 23 – Choir of Christ Chapel Home Concert
  • Apr. 25 – Boston Chapter Event - Bay Back Hotel
  • Apr. 28 – May Day! Peace Conference
  • May 1 – Gustavus Choir Home Concert
  • May 3 – Chicago Chapter Event – The Chicago Club
  • May 4 – Denver Chapter Event