EIGHTY YEARS AGO: The balance of the restricted time certificates at Decorah State Bank has been released. This is good news from the bank officials. Anyone wishing to draw on them at this time may do so.

...The Elks Lodge will initiate 18 new members next week, with an additional 34 new applications received. They will be initiated before the New Year.

...The annual meeting of the Burr Oak Lutheran Ladies Society was held last week at the Ernest Bergman home. Mrs. Joseph Norlie is president. Mrs. Henry Lovlien is vice president.

...Shop Mott & Company Store in downtown Decorah for the ladies on the list this Christmas. Fur coats for $25. New dresses for $5.95.

...Bake Rite Bakery has holiday fruitcakes and Christmas bread. Priced at 18 cents each.

...An additional 60 men have been added to the Civil Works Administration quota for the county. Work is to commence soon on flood damage on Highway No. 55 near the Ed Youmans farm northwest of Decorah.

...A flock of prairie chickens was spotted near Decorah at the E.V. Gillett farm.

...News from the high school: The art students in Miss Gullickson's class have been busy making free-hand poinsettias. The art projects will be gifts for students' parents.

...The editor of the high school newspaper has released her conception of the "perfect boy" (having the attributes of the following high school boys): hair of Davis Coffeen, eyes of Lester Forde, skin of Ed Glesne, personality of Alfred Moen, modesty of Norman Ellinson, cheerfulness of Richard Ellingson, brains of Thomas Roberts, clothes of Bruce Mallum, feet of Norman Bredesen and the athletic ability of Marv Anderson. What a boy.

...The Fred Carlson Company has received another paving contract. This was for 1.2 miles in the town of Hopkinton in Delaware County. Contract is $32,572.

SEVENTY YEARS AGO: A 19-year-old Decorah man was tracked down by a bloodhound and is now in jail after damaging three automobiles in the city recently.

... The Bjonerud Dry Goods Store over at Calmar has moved to its new quarters in the building formerly occupied by Flaskerud and Korbel.

...Durey's Firestone Store has a new shipment of popular toys for the kids - from 1943: toy Pennsylvania Streamliner passenger trains, Timmy Turtle and Katy Cricket toys, sleeping dolls with long genuine hair, rocking horses, comic books and ice skates.

...Ruth Seim, the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Lars A. Seim of Decorah, will wed Corp. Ernest Steneroden of Minneapolis this month.

...Robert Erickson, the son of Mr. and Mrs. Carl Erickson who reside on Oak Street, is now an instructor of radio at Scott Field in Illinois. He is home on furlough visiting his parents.

...FRONT PAGE NEWS: A picture of 2 ½-year-old Mary Pat Ronan, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Leo P. Ronan, appears on the front page of the Dec. 15, 1943 Public Opinion. She bought $1 worth of pretty red "Fight Turberculosis" bangles as part of a promotion in downtown Decorah. Selling her the fund-raising bangles was Mary Lou Thompson, the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. David Thompson of Canoe Township.

...Lt. John Anderson of Iowa City, who is a nephew of L.H. Hurlbut of this county, is reported as a prisoner of the Germans.

SIXTY YEARS AGO: The Madrigal Singers of Decorah High School will appear on WMT Television in Cedar Rapids later this month.

...Mr. and Mrs. Lyle Sacquitne and Mr. and Mrs. Frederic Carlson were among the locals dressed in their finery at the Jaycee Charity Ball held at the American Legion Club five miles north of Decorah. The Jaycees made a net profit of $65, which will be used to help purchase gifts for underprivileged children in the county.

...Gary Sauser of Calmar celebrated his seventh birthday earlier this month. Guests at a party in his honor were Peter Meyer, Dale Donlon, Sam and Stevie Iverson, John Nystrom, Mark Numedahl, Mark Severson, Denny Lee, Bruce Ean, David Hurlbut, Craig Taylor, Timmy Staley, Paul Daker and Tommy Sauser.

...Winners of the annual Decorah Christmas Lighting Contest are: Clayton Haugen, Richard Dinger, L.A. Karnik, Mr. and Mrs. Kenneth Ringdahl, Dorisgene Doerr and Lillian Dickman.

...Registration is under way for the popular DHS Christmas Bowling Tournament.

...Decorah High School basketball team stunned New Hampton, 54-52 in a NE Iowa Conference thriller. Standouts for Decorah were Jerry Pfister, Alan Heggen, Marv Mikesh, and Jim Hogan.

FIFTY YEARS AGO: From Santa's Mailbag in 1963:

..."Dear Santa, I would like a Barbie doll and some clothes for her. I will try to be a good girl. I am 6 and in the first grade. Love, LuAnn Lansing, Ossian"

..."Dear Santa, Bring me a truck and come to our house and sit in our rocking chair and relax. We will be at Grandma's house Xmas eve. Paul Sunde."

..."Dear Santa, I would like a Bop-a-Bear, new Finstenwald buckshot rifle and a Vacu U form. Thank you. Love David Anderson, Maple Ave., Decorah. P.S. My sister would like a Barbie doll."

...From the society pages of 1963: Miss Karla Olson, the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Kenneth Olson of Decorah, recently celebrated her sixth birthday. Attending her party were Rhonda and Kathy Dolash, Debra Smith, Kristi Smith, Theresa Rodenkirk, Karen Pfister and Mark and Judy Olson. Later in the evening, a supper was held in her honor for family members at the Olson home.

...Mr. and Mrs. Lloyd Winger of Skyline Road have won first prize in the Decorah Christmas Home Lighting Contest. Second place goes to Barbara Iverson, who lives on Main Street and Williams (on the corner) and third place winner is a Minowa Heights resident, Edward J. Walters.

FORTY YEARS AGO: The Sunday sale of liquor has now been approved by the Decorah City Council.

...Luther College is among several area educational and government institutions adopting the energy conservation measures since President Nixon revealed the nationwide seriousness of the energy situation.

...Free shopper parking during the holidays is the annual "Christmas gift" from the Decorah Police Department. The police meter maids are no longer penalizing motorists for overtime parking.

...The unemployment rate in Winneshiek County has dropped to 2.1 percent.

...Shop these bargains at Fareway in 1973: Cake mixes, 39 cents each; Brach's Christmas chocolates, 69 cents per pound; Ocean Spray cranberry juice, 59 cents per jar; and powdered sugar, 39 cents for a two-pound package.

...Here are a few letters to Santa from December of 1973:

..."Dear Santa Claus: Thank you for the present last year. I want that great big St. Bernard like in Apache Mall. And a can of crushed pineapple. We have a tree up but not decorated. The stockings will be in the same place. Tell Mrs. Claus Hi. Your Friend: Tracy Larson. P.S. Please write back. I am sorry I didn't say hi in Apache Mall."

..."Dear Santa: My name is Karin and I have tried to be a good girl For Christmas I would like a play refrigerator, Weeble Wobble camper, nurse hat and Hoppity-Hop. Could you bring my baby sister Kristie a doll? Merry Christmas, Karin Kuehner, Age 4."

...George Kjome has been inducted into the Iowa Association of Track Coaches Hall of Fame. The induction was held in Ames.

...The annual Decorah High School Sno Ball dance will be Dec. 27 at Nob Hill. Bill Post is advisor to the Fire Squad, sponsors of the annual Christmas dance. Music will be by the Dick Chaffee Band.

...The Decorah Viking basketball team is tied for the lead in the conference. Some of the standouts in a recent game were Ron Evans, Mark Olson, Stan Willer and Al Teetshorn.

...The freshman wrestlers for Decorah are now 7-0 on the season, after three straight dual meet victories. Among the standouts are Clark Quandahl, Jim Casper, Dave Drew, Mark Wolfe, Rick Samuelson, Tom Massman, Mark Faldet, Al Rekward, Steve Munkel, Dave Strand, Brian Dwyer, Dave Hanson and Dan McCaffrey.

THIRTY YEARS AGO: 1983: The Decorah High School girls' basketball team has won two straight games. Amy Dwyer went on a second-half scoring rampage in a recent game at Lansing Kee High to propel the Viking girls to victory. She led the scoring with 23 points. Other standouts were Cheri White with 12 points and Michelle Quam with 10 points.

... A special vigil following the airing of the ABC television movie "The Day After" was held at the Winneshiek County Courthouse. The group of 75 traveled to the St. Benedict's Church after the candlelight vigil to discuss how common citizens can fight the nuclear arms build-up.

...Here are a few letters to Santa from 1983:

"Dear Santa: This year I would like a Dukes of Hazzard, pooh talking telephone, semi-stromper, drag crag and flame car. My sister would like a dolly and some little girl toys. We will leave you milk and cookies and peanut butter and bread. See you at my house, Kristopher Floy and Amanda Floy."

"Dear Santa, I want a computer and a Walkie Talkie. Kristin wants a Cabbage Patch Doll. I would leave a new dollar for Donner your reindeer. I like him best! Thank you. Love, Jason Leonart, Age 5, Route 3, Decorah."

...Dorothy and Francis Larson are celebrating their 40th wedding anniversary with a dance at Matter's Ballroom on Dec. 16, 1983.

TWENTY YEARS AGO: Groundbreaking ceremonies were held at the new Decorah Clinic at the Winneshiek County Memorial Hospital. The clinic is a Mayo Regional Practice and will be attached to the hospital on two levels.

...Six of seven property owners in lock 16, the downtown Decorah site of the proposed new Fareway Grocery Store, have agreed to sell their property. Block 16 in the city is currently bounded by Main Street, State Street, Broadway and Washington Street.

...Future Kansas Jayhawk Raef LaFrentz dominated inside in a match-up between his team, MFL, and the Decorah Vikings the other night. Final score, 69-59 in favor of the MFL Bulldogs.

...Brooke Boice of Decorah has been selected as a member of the Iowa State University Leadership Class. Twenty-seven freshmen earned the honors.

...Kent Bishop is the new manager of the APAC Teleservices Center opening here in mid January.

...Now showing at the Viking Theatre: "Mrs. Doubtfire" starring Robin Williams; "Sister Act 2" starring Whoopi Goldberg; and "Wayne's World 2."

...Theme for next year's Nordic Fest is "Just for the Sport of It".

...From Santa's Mailbag in 1993:

"Dear Santa, My name is Ben Gardner. I have been a good boy all year. Swords are my favorite toys. I would like a Robin Hood sword and a Robin Hood Book for Christmas. Thank you, Ben Gardner"

TEN YEAR AGO: A historic structure would be preserved and a community need would be met through the rehabilitation of Decorah's East Side School. That was part of a proposal given at the conclusion of a two-day workshop conducted by a team of preservation and development experts from the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

...Mary and Randy Brincks of Ossian are runners-up for the Iowa Farm Bureau Federation's 2003 young farmer achievement award.

...Greg Stammeyer is the Turkey of the Year at Turkey Valley High School. Chuck Offenberger of the Des Moines Register makes the selection each year.

...Brett Humpal scored 23 points and had six assists and three rebounds and three steals in a Decorah-North Winn boys' basketball victory over MFL-Mar Mac.

...Nancy and Ted Sojka have been named Iowa's Outstanding Middle School Art Educators for 2003-2004.

...The 43rd Hesper Community Choir Contata was Dec. 13, 2003. Director was Marvin Cooper and organist was Bunnie Cooper. Pianist was Joyce Raaen and narrator this year was Greg Tjossem.