Waxing Nostalgic

Posted: Monday, May 3, 2010 at 12:00 am
By: Doug Lund
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Way back in the dark ages (1975) I was called into the office of Keloland TV president, Evans Nord.
It had been just a few weeks since I’d been chosen to co-anchor the Big News at Ten with Steve Hemmingsen.
Oh, god..I thought..this is it, he’s going to fire me.
“How ya doin’ Doug? Have a seat.”
Enough with the small talk, I thought. Let’s just get it over with.
“Doug,” Mr. Nord said, “You’re doing a good job on the air..but you need to loosen up a little bit. At times it’s as if I’m looking at a figure in a wax museum.”
I was reminded of that last week as I headed up to my hometown of Volga where I was one of 47 people..living and dead.. featured in the annual “Sioux Valley 4th Graders’ South Dakota Famous People Wax Museum.”
The students themselves decided who they wanted to portray then did extensive research  including the gathering of props and costumes and memorizing a speech about the life and times of their characters.
Members of the Ingalls family were portrayed by Emily Ford (Laura) Danielle Roth (Ma) Sierra Leighton (Mary)Bethany Rennich (Carrie) Nikole Ziegler (Grace)There was no actual wax involved..however each young portrayer stood silent at their various station in the school gym until visitors came by and pushed a paper button to bring the South Dakota person alive.
Madison artist, John Green was on hand to see his character performed by Annie DenisonIt was great fun..and eerily flattering..to see the Big News Team represented. There was a lot of memory work involved and each of the portrayers did a truly excellent job.
The Big News team 2010. (l to r) Trevor Olson (Doug Lund) Lucas Trooien (Jim Burt..I love the plaid jacket) Jacob Janes (Steve Hemmingsen) Brennan Stoltenberg (Captain 11 aka Dave Dedrick)A deep bow and tip of the hat to 4th grade teacher, Bonnie Graff and all the other teachers and parents who helped pull off this unique program of education and entertainment.
About 750 people made the rounds of this living history exhibit.
If it were up to me..I’d give all the kids an A+.

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