Class of ’62
March 2010

Rounded Rectangle: Bicycle Tours  by Wes

Since many of us are no longer actively spending time working, how we fill our time with pleasurable things becomes increasingly important.  

One of the things I discovered many years ago was bicycle tourism, and I have been on about 40 trips worldwide.  After doing several Elderhostel (Exploritas) bicycle tours, which were frequently stultifying, follow-the-leader type outings, I learned about Bicycle Adventure Club (  What was so special for me about this international group was its non-profit, volunteer led format.  I could go at my own pace, follow their maps or explore as I chose, and end up with my luggage delivered to the nights’ designated destination.  Around 5 p.m. we enjoy a provided “happy hour,” we review the day, we discuss the next days’ activities/ride, and follow it with dinner.  Most of the tours are about two weeks long, and the participants are mostly retired professionals like us.

I retired in 1994 and have been overseas bicycling every year since.  I carefully observed how the best volunteer leaders put their trips together, so that after a while I was brave enough to try my hand at organizing a trip.  I have led one trip in Sicily and three in my home state of Colorado.  There is a special rush that leaders get from sharing routes/sights they love with others who have not experienced them.  Another neat outcome is the bond that sometimes develops between the participants, who come from a variety of backgrounds.  That explains my increasing circle of friends from across the U.S.  Now I always have friends on my new rides.

A couple of years ago I enjoyed bicycling north of the Arctic Circle in Norway.  I never saw the sun set the whole time I was there; hotel rooms have black out shades to aid your sleeping during the bright night.  Cycling between the Lofoten Islands, I rode under the sea in a long tunnel, over the sea on high bridges, and sailed the fjords on ferries.  I have been “down under” four times on bicycle tours in New Zealand and Australia.  I am always amazed at how much beauty there is in the world and seeing it from the seat of a bicycle is wonderful.

This year I have scheduled four trips with BAC.  In February I go on a south Florida loop ride (Tampa to the Keys and return to Tampa).  June takes me away from the senior slow-pitch softball team I player-managed for 15 years to Spokane and a Canadian Selkirk loop.  At the end of July I go to Hokkaido, Japan, and I finish the year visiting the National Parks in southern Utah.  On only the last ride will I not take my “coupled” full-sized custom bicycle, which comes apart and can travel in a 26" x 26" x 10" suitcase.  My other luggage is a carry-on packed with drip dry everything.  I don’t take anything I won’t use, and hand-wash my bicycle jerseys and shorts regularly with the powdered soap I bring.

Best regards,

~Wes Johnson

Rounded Rectangle: Personal Notes

Gathering the news and writing a class letter is definitely not a chore!  It’s just that I tend to procrastinate about getting started.  I received many comments after the last letter and I even received some Christmas cards and pictures.  What fun!  So I saved all the letters, cards and emails and intended to write a “winter” class letter in February.  Well, February is a short month…

Text Box:  Hearing back from you gives me great pleasure.  I hope you enjoy the class letters.  As you may have noticed, I have been inviting individuals to write the opening article.  Thanks to those who have written in the past─Ben Leadholm, Kermit Swanson (several times), Sharon Maurer Edberg, Hap LeVander, Matt Eckman, Gail Lindsey Breen, Audrey Kylander Kramer, Sandy Luedtke Buendorf and most recently, Dennis Anderson, and this letter, Wes Johnson.  The writers have chosen their own topics and can write as much or as little as they choose.  In the words of one of our esteemed professors at Gustavus regarding how long to make the essay, “Like a lady’s skirt─long enough to cover the subject and short enough to be interesting.”  YOU are invited to write an article; you need not be an English major, a great writer or even know a whole lot about anything.  There is no exclusive selection process.  I am just delighted when a classmate writes and you are probably very happy to read something other than my ramblings.  Send me an email, call me (919-556-6162) or just send what you have written via email or snail mail (2537 Carriage Oaks Drive, Raleigh, NC  27614).  Or you may contact me and suggest someone you would like to see be the writer of the first article in one of next the class letters.

I am hoping that Kay Estesen Mobray will send something about the trip that she and Dale took to South Africa in January.  Kay, take any approach you like and tell us about your experiences, the country, the people…

And on with the personal news….  Stealing from some of the Christmas letters─Lynn Rosendahl Johnson has had a full year in 2009.  Her son, Adam, came home from Guinea, West Africa where he had been for two years serving in the Peace Corps.  (I wish someone would research the Peace Corps volunteers connected to the class ’62.  Beginning with Kay Jurgenson and Jerry Springston there have been many including children of classmates.)  Lynn says she and Roger have no grandchildren, only a grand-dog, complete with a health insurance plan.  Lynn has been a student of yoga for many years and is now qualified as a teacher.

Jan Swanberg Mousel writes, “Our picture depicts a very cold night this December at the Hanover caroling festival with our granddaughter, Rose.  It was a lovely event, but we were happiest standing by the bonfires, drinking hot chocolate.

We spent the first three months of this year in Cocoa Beach, Florida.  It was a different area for us staying on the ocean, but we found it very enjoyable to get to know another part of sunny Florida.  The constant waves, the surfers, the rockets and shuttle sent into space, cruise ships on the horizon, unique shopping and restaurants all added to our interest of a new space.  We also enjoyed company of family and friends who visited us during our stay.  In fact, we liked it so well that we are renting the same condo this year but only for January and February.  We must return home in March for the birth of our second grandchild which takes happy precedence over Florida’s warm weather.  We so enjoyed having Rob ’97, Sara and Rose in Florida with us last January, but due to the new baby on the way, they won’t return this year.

We spent our spring, summer and fall traveling to our Wisconsin cabin and back home again, finding it takes more time and effort to keep up two places with the large lawns each has, but still enjoying the work and flower planting, etc.

The Fourth of July brought us a new event with the engagement of Anne ’00 to Minneapolis native Billy Tillmann whom she met at work.  They are planning a small wedding in December of 2010.  She also took advantage of the stimulus offer from our government and purchased a house in the northern suburbs.  Now if we could get both of our kids to take all their belongings out of our house…

Linda Johnson Blanding and husband, Dick, have had some good ski days on the slopes at Squaw Valley with son, Eric, and his wife Kath.  They also traveled to Washington visiting the San Juan Islands and a few wineries.

Such fun it is to see the family picture Christmas cards.  I especially enjoy seeing the Eckman family.  Matt and Kay’s son Erik ’98 was a resident at University of North Carolina Hospital in 2006 when I had surgery there.  Erik and his wife and I put together a Gusties gather event that year.  So it was especially fun to see Erik and wife AND TWO CHILDREN in the Eckman family picture.

Judy Flom Hill and husband, George, have two grandchildren, Brooke 7 and Brady 5, but as Judy laments, “…we live too far away for Grandma Judy and Grandpa George to be suitably doting.”

It has been a long time since we’ve heard from Barbara Johnson Schmidt.  Remember what a good actress she was at Gustavus?  Good to hear from you, Barbara!  Barbara writes, “This “funny lady” is moving from Arizona back to Minnesota in the spring of 2010.  I’ve been in Arizona (mostly) since 1987.  We’ll be living in Fairmont, MN.  I’ve enjoyed being here in the southwest.  I’ve been in a number of community plays in Tucson.  I’ve been a trained volunteer naturalist for the forest service (14 years).  I’ve enjoyed a number of dance classes and pottery classes.  Jim and I have camped at many of the national and state parks in the southwest.  It’s time for us to live near our families in Minnesota and Illinois.  Glad tidings to all!”

In December Terry Skone wrote, “Just received my copy of the class letter…I enjoy reading it and learning of the coming and goings of our classmates.  I especially enjoyed Al Henderson’s observations about his recent trip to Turkey.  I had the good fortune of a Danube River trip in August that started in Budapest and ended in Istanbul!  Istanbul was the highlight of the trip for me.”

Steve Hanson has also been traveling.  “I just returned from my second trip to Papua, New Guinea (just north of Australia) this year and a trip to Indonesia October 2008.  I’m a regional field officer for the Gideons International (we put the Bibles in hotels), and am assigned to 32 countries in Asia and the Pacific rim.  Lots of time on airplanes, but so worthwhile!  It is the best volunteer job I have ever had!

“Each trip is for training of local Gideons to distribute Bibles and New Testaments in the various schools, hotels, prisons, military, hospitals, professional offices, and domestic violence and abuse shelters (women are treated as second class citizens not infrequently).  Islam is very active in the area with frequent mosques and 4:30 call to prayer.  Indonesia is 80% Moslem.

“I’ve also been able to travel to Ghana and Malawi in Africa, doing some medical work as well.  There are 54 countries there.  The battle for the soul of Africa is not between atheism and Christianity, but Islam and Christianity.

“We enjoy life in Virginia Beach where I see veterans for their disabilities for the VA.  We enjoy six of our 13 grandchildren here in Virginia Beach.  The others are in the Minneapolis area.  “Looking forward to our 50th in 2012!”

Another reply to the last class letter is from Dick Moody.  “As I read the recent class letter, I was surprised to see the name of Alissa Fahrenz  (Class of 2013)!  She happens to be the roommate of my youngest niece, Brittany Sands of St James (also of the class of 2013).

“The string of connections here seems very unusual—although it maybe only reinforces what a small world it is.  One of several jobs I had during my four years at GAC was working in the office for Ren and Sylvia Anderson ’34 ’36, Alissa’s great grandparents.  And during my time there, I was sports editor of the Weekly, in between the times where that position was held by Jim Anderson ’60 (Alissa’s grandfather) and Tom Anderson ’63 (Jim’s younger brother.)  “I was able to spend some time talking with Jim and his wife, Diane (Hammargren ’63) at the library benefit last month where we came across several other connections—even though the Andersons are in Minnesota, while I (like Alissa’s parents), live in the Chicago area.!”

Dick and Beverly Moody continue to spend the winters in the Chicago area.  “In addition to our Buffalo Grove home, we have an apartment overlooking Lake Michigan not too far from Navy Pier.  So we enjoy watching the ice patterns change on the lake on cold, snowy days.  And we usually get away for some type of trip during winter─this year we will be on a family reunion cruise down the Pacific coast of Mexico during the first half of February.  It should help shorten the frigid season.

“I just heard on the news that the best occupation for 2010 is an actuary!  That was my career, which was great and also enabled me to retire at 55.  And I have enjoyed that retirement for the past 14 years.”

Ed Blair sent us some news and a picture.

Text Box:  “I’m getting more fit as I go from door to door in my quest to become re-elected to the position of town council member.  We live in Payson, AZ, just 82 miles north-north east of Phoenix Sky Harbor airport.  I was elected in ’06 and it happens every four years.  I’ll let you know if you can, again, call me ‘Your Honor.’  “Now that I’m done going to church council meetings─after 35 years of it─now my wife Karyl (Krantz ’64) has been elected and is the financial secretary.”

As I say again and again, it is truly a pleasure to hear from our classmates.  Email is such a quick and convenient means of communication.  I get letters and emails and some of us email back and forth off and on.  I hear frequently from Audrey Kylander Kramer.  She is such a great “reporter.”  She is so active in her community and as a traveler that I appreciate her taking time to send news.  She sends news regarding classmates she sees in and around town and on her travels as well as updates in her life.  I asked Audrey about any projects she had underway and she replied, “projects?  Just taking care of the body is a project, but one thing I am doing that I especially enjoy is participating on the Carver County Water Environment and Natural Resources Advisory committee.  It’s a two-year stint.  Every other month I meet with Carver County water management staff and volunteers, and together we discuss ways to keep the lakes, rivers and ground waters clean.  I have the green point of view (I just invested in a Toyota Prius) and really like helping to decide how to keep the watersheds’ waters as pure as possible.  Our goal is to stabilize shorelines, protect wetlands from sedimentation, encourage rain gardens to reduce impervious runoff, relocate feedlots so drainage does not reach near-by streams, test lake waters so we know they are safe for swimming and the edible fish are flourishing, remove direct discharge occurrences, reintroduce native fish where necessary when the lake is healthy enough, monitoring septic systems for leakage into ground water or aquifers, establishing construction guidelines to prevent future flooding, and much, much more.  As you might guess, the staff is mainly engineers, and three of them have graduated from Gustavus!!!!  They’re much younger than I, of course, and are really creative, dynamic leaders.”  Thank you, reporter Audrey.  You are much appreciated!

Janyce Helgeson Olson is another good reporter.  Her emails are always fun to read.  She sends some good pictures too.  Jan confesses to being a saver─and she is!  Her “saving” reminds me that we should all save pictures─ancient and modern─to bring to our reunion in 2012.  We could have some interesting displays for everyone to enjoy.  So start your file CLASS ’62 REUNION 2012.  And bring the pictures and mementos to our 50th!

This picture Jan has sent is a picture of her 6 year-old grandson wearing Jan’s freshman beanie.

Text Box:  The writing of these words is March 2; as I read through Jan’s letter to enter her news into this letter, I was jolted as I read, “On March 2, Rich and I will fly to Caracas, Venezuela for a two-week visit with our son Rolf ’93, a Gustie grad, who is deputy political officer in the U.S. Embassy.  We’ll go on to Santiago, Chile to visit the family I lived with when I was a grad student and traveled to Chile through the Experiment in International Living.”  Dialing Jan’s cell phone, I caught her in the Miami airport en route.  She said that she has spoken with her “family” in Chile; they are fine and have said that she should come to visit them.  The runways in Santiago were not damaged but one of the terminal buildings was severely damaged.  Concepcion was the hardest hit in Chile.  Jan promised to keep in touch.  We should have a report on the post-earth quake Chile in the next class letter.

Returning to Jan’s message of January 2010 – She said they have had some trips to Austin to see their older son and family, to New Orleans viewing the progress since Katrina.  While in Austin they visited with Ted and Marietta (Bittrich) Johns ’61 ’63.  Ted and Jan’s husband, Rich, enjoyed reminiscing about their Augustana days and they all enjoyed Gustavus memories.

While in Austin, Jan had lunch with Vail Peterson Parsons.  While in Minneapolis that summer, she attended a family reunion and learned that Joanne Kendall (former Gustavus first lady) is a third cousin and Chester Johnson (former Gustavus faculty) is a second cousin once removed.

Do you remember Joanie Henes?  Joanie was my freshman roommate but stayed only one year at Gustavus.  Over the years I have kept in touch with Joan AND when I moved to California, without knowing it, bought a house in La Canada, which is where Joanie lives.  She introduced me to the fun of the horse races at Santa Anita.  Joan is doing fine.  She has one son and one grandchild.

Dr.Kay Jurgenson, pastor recently retired from Mount Olivet, and I exchange emails and have managed to get together on a few of my Minnesota trips.  Kay and her brother, Stan, took a cruise during Advent.  Kay is planning a trip to Israel for Easter.  “Please pray for us.  I know it is not ever the best time to go there, but I felt I needed a pilgrimage ….  And, since I have been there about ten times I need to visit friends and walk the path Jesus took that first Palm Sunday; and to be at the Garden Tomb on Easter.”           Have a safe trip, Kay!

Ben and Ruth (Johnson) Leadholm always seem to manage several trips each year.  Both are healthy and fit, playing golf, skiing and traveling, and Ruth continues her volunteer position of being a docent at the Minneapolis Institute of Art.  They have skied both Vail and Snowmass this winter.  They went to Cancun for a “destination wedding.”  The groom was the son of Maggie Swenson Miller.  (I think Ben and Maggie are cousins.)  Ben also mentioned that Roz Johnson Anderson was back in Minneapolis in February to visit her grandchildren.  She and Mark ’60 spend winters in Arizona.

I enjoy receiving emails from Mark Skoog who now lives in Mankato.  He and Patty are doing well.  When I asked Mark to tell me some news about his old buddies he sent me this great message.  “We had a wonderful brunch with about 30 Gustie guys at Famous Dave’s in Bloomington on Saturday, December 12th…  We had some guys from three classes: ’60, ’61, and ’62.  Guys from our class were Norm Anderson, John Kerry, Jim Holm, Mark Skoog, Hap LeVander, Pete Wold, Bill Nordstrom, Brad Pester, John Jambeck, Rick Joseph, and Jim Kersten.  I’m working from memory so I may have missed someone.  I hope not.  We had a great conversation and lots of good food.  Many fun memories got retold and embellished.  We were all surely stronger, faster, tougher and more handsome, etc.  You get the idea.  Anyway, we all really did enjoy our gathering and each other’s company.”

Mark reports that they have 2 granddaughters─ one in Pittsburgh (Emma, age 12) and one in Baltimore (Lauren, age 5).  Mark said that he reads a lot─for pleasure as opposed to technical material required reading in the Navy.  He and Patty like to travel and have taken a river cruise in April called “Holland and Belgium in the Springtime.”  In November and December they took a Rhine River trip called “Christmas Markets Along the Rhine.”  This May they are going to Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick.

Going on, Mark says, “Thanks for the heads up on the 2012 reunion.  We are a special class…the Centennial Class and it will be the 50th of our graduation.  If you remember graduating from high school… in 1958, it was Minnesota’s Centennial of becoming a state so we are the high school and college graduates of TWO Centennial Classes.”  Mark says we are a special class and I couldn’t agree with him more.

At my request Louise Spong Rodine-Doucette sent a nice long email.  She said that she was amazed that we in North Carolina can be snowbound by a couple of inches of snow.  She said, “We got pictures from our family in Virginia with the grandchildren playing in the snow.  I don’t think they’ve ever had such an amount.”  (You may recall the national news reporting of the snow in Washington, DC.)  “This past October Sandy Johnson Neagle and husband, Lyle, visited us in New England with my brother and Sandy’s sister, Gloria Johnson Spong ’65.  It was fun to share some of the Rhode Island tourism and good food.  We have done some traveling in the states and are planning a trip to the Loire Valley and Burgundy in France…  We do have our annual trip to Belfast, Maine in the summer as well as a week here and there to various southern states.”  Louise has been retired from Hospice social work for a year.  She described a problem that she had with vertigo which was caused by a benign tumor that had taken away her hearing.  Surgery to remove the tumor also resolved the vertigo.  Louise’s son-in-law has been diagnosed with multiple myeloma (cancer of the plasma).  Her son and his wife (both Gustie grads) live in the Boston area.  Louise and her husband enjoy time with the grandchildren since none of them live too far away.  Thanks for all the news, Louise.  Thoughts and prayers go to you and your family as you deal with medical problems.

At this time in our lives we begin to experience more frequently the loss of loved ones─parents, friends, spouses and classmates.  Recently Hank and I attended two funerals in one week─both friends, one being a woman older than us and one being a woman younger than us.  Although I didn’t expect to be so deeply shaken by the two funerals, I definitely was.  Something seemed to say, death can come at any age.  Was I mourning the loss of two friends or was I trying to grasp the reality of death?  Our own mortality seems to be a reality that gently discloses itself to us.

I don’t always hear the news of parent deaths, although, since Sandy Luedtke Buendorf and I keep in close and frequent contact, I do know that Sandy’s mother died in February.  It is sad yet special and moving that Sandy’s mother died on the birthday of Sandy and Dan’s grandson, Max.  Sympathy and prayers for you and your family, Sandy.

On January 2, 2010, Sheri Swanson Chell died from cancer that she had been battling for some time.  Paul Chell’s ’60 email address is and the home address is 6319 Shadywood Court SE, Lacey, WA  98503 –for those of you who would like to contact Paul.

On November 18, 2009, Richard Peterson died.  For those of you who may wish to send a note, the Minnesota address is Charlene Peterson, 10933 Lexington Drive, Eden Prairie, MN  55344.  Our sympathy to Charlene and Richard's family. One of the beautiful things about being a Gustie, and more specifically a Gustie of Class ’62 is that we care about each other and support one another in happiness and in sorrow.  Our friendships began 52 years ago, we bonded and we continue to feel our connectedness in so many ways.

Jan Eiffert Hoomani

Class of 1962 Scholarship

We can be proud of ourselves in that our scholarship has increased in value thanks to continued giving and good investment advisors in a bear market.  With the market down, this is a particularly good time to give since each dollar buys more shares, which will eventually increase in value.  We are now providing scholarship money to three recipients.  Can you imagine what it must be like as a parent paying tuition in these difficult economic times?  President Ohle told me that Gustavus has been sensitive to financial difficulties parents may be having and so people from the college have been in contact with parents assuring them that the college recognizes difficult times and is willing to work with them in meeting their payment commitments.  And of course, that helps to keep retention rates high.  Available scholarship money does too…

The recipients of the Class of 1962 Scholarship are as follows:

Darcy Reller ’12 (renewed)

Major:                          Nursing

Academic Year:          Sophomore

Hometown:                 Rosemount, MN

Matthew J. Crea ’11

Major:                          Biochemistry

Academic Year:          Junior

Hometown:                 Saint Bonifacius, MN

Nicole L Abel ’11

Major:                          Nursing

Academic Year:          Junior

Hometown:                 Evanston, IL

Are You Ready for some…………BIG NEWS?!!

2012 is the year of our class reunion─our 50th!  In 2012 Gustavus will celebrate the sesquicentennial of the College.  President Jack Ohle has invited the Centennial Class of 1962 to participate in the celebration!  President Ohle has invited the Class of ’62 (THAT’S US!) to be present and participate in BOTH the spring (May 2012) and the fall 2012 (Homecoming) celebrations.  The 50-year class ordinarily comes in May for the reunion and induction into the 50-Year Club.  It is President Ohle’s request and invitation to us to not only be on campus but also to “robe up and march at commencement” and be present and recognized at the graduation ceremonies of the Class of 2012.  (Many people in Class ’62 hold advanced degrees; wearing of hoods is one detail yet to be determined.)

We will be recognized guests at graduation.  The honored guests will be the king, the queen and the crown-princess of Sweden!  There will be reunion events and sesquicentennial events in May.  The dates of the spring class reunion are May 25 and 26, 2012.  Graduation is May 27, 2012.

The fall sesquicentennial events will coincide with homecoming.  The specific date for homecoming is presently unknown because the MIAC games for 2012 are not yet scheduled.  In the fall it will be the fun of homecoming and seeing friends from other classes.  The fall is also the time of the gigantic sesquicentennial banquet, to which we will be invited.

One of the first questions that came to my mind was, will everyone be able to come to both?  Realistically, the answer is probably no.  However, with two years to plan and budget and save, it is possible.  My hope and prayer is that all of us will be physically able to travel─long trip or short trip─both in May and in the fall of 2012.

Rounded Rectangle: Mark your calendar:  May 25, 26, 27, 2012 and September/October 2012  Let’s be ready for some big celebrations!!!!!

One more piece of information regarding 2012:  Sandy Buendorf wrote in a letter to me the following, “During the present J-Term at Gustavus, a group of students in the Class of 2012 is doing a comparison of the 150-year class and our 100-year class.  Jan Swanson Sammelson was interviewed on the phone as well as Bruce Seastrand.  I was interviewed in person.  Both Bruce and I will do a video interview as well.  I also referred them to Kermit and Jan (Swanson) Swanson.”  The people Sandy mentioned all live in St Peter.  The students did a great job with their project and you can see the final product including interviews if you go online to:

Rounded Rectangle: Some Book Suggestions For  Your Reading Enjoyment:

Home  by Marilynne Robinson

Ole and Lena went to the Olympics.  While sitting on a bench a lady turned to Ole and said, “Are you a pole vaulter?”

Ole said, “No, I’m Norvegian and my name isn’t Valter.”

The Piano Teacher  by Janice Y.K. Lee The Painted Drum  by Louise Erdrich

The Elegance of the Hedgehog  by Muriel Barbery

The Uncommon Reader  by Allan Bennett

The Madonnas of Leningrad  by Debra Dean

From Gustavus Authors

Coming Home Crazy  by Bill Holm

Loyalty  by Daniel H. Johnson

You are invited to submit titles and authors of books you have enjoyed.

Rounded Rectangle: 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.

Wind Orchestra Tour

The Gustavus Wind Orchestra, under the direction of Conductor Douglas Nimmo, has returned from a 15-day concert tour through Germany, Poland, the Czech and Slovak Republics, Hungary and Austria.  The Choir of Christ Chapel will be traveling to the Phoenix/Tucson area during spring break.  On April 15 they will be at Lord of Life Lutheran Church in Sun City West, April 16 at All Saints Lutheran Church (LCMS) in Phoenix, and on April 17 at Lord of Grace Lutheran Church in Tucson.  For other campus news please check the website at

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:  Naples, March 14; Seattle, March 19; San Francisco, March 20; Los Angeles, March 21; New Orleans, March 30; New York, April 22; and Boston, April 25.  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:  Amanda Nienow, assistant professor of chemistry will speak of her January term class “Chemistry & Crime:  Examination of CSI-type TV Shows & Real Life Forensic Science."                                             

Upcoming Events

  • Mar. 14 – Naples Chapter Event – Naples Grande Beach Resort
  • Mar. 17 – Gustie Breakfast – Amanda Nienow, assistant professor of chemistry
  • Mar. 19 – Seattle Chapter Event – Bellevue Club
  • Mar. 20 – San Francisco Chapter Event
  • Mar. 21 – Los Angeles Chapter Event – Jet Propulsion Laboratory
  • Mar. 30 – New Orleans Chapter Event – Sheraton New Orleans Hotel
  • Apr. 22 – New York Chapter Event – The Core Club
  • Apr. 25 – Boston Chapter Event - Bay Back Hotel