Norders jump into marina biz


by Sandy Bond

A bevy of boats bob in the Bridge City Marina bay, and many a captain and crew have fish tales to tell. Could there be a more beautiful place to be Dakota dreamin’?

After their son Mike, his wife Jessie and their identical twin boys, Joshua and Kregen, 11, took over the lease of the marina, Bob and Jean Norder as co-owners volunteered to help out.

“This was a dream for Mike,” Jean said. “As a child he loved the water and fishing and we had the opportunity to help make his dream come true.”

During the school year, Mike continues in his career as a para-professional and wrestling coach for the Mobridge-Pollock School District. Jessie is a nurse practitioner for Mobridge Regional Hospital and practices at clinics in the West River area.

The youngest daughter of John and Dora Gerdes, Jean and her older sister Lillian grew up on a farm near Bruning, Neb., where the family milked cows and raised chickens, corn, milo, wheat, and alfalfa.

“We always had a big garden, too,” Jean said. “I believe I was only eight when I learned to drive the family tractor. I was the son they never had.”

Tired of farm life, Jean took her suitcase with her to her graduation ceremony at Bruning High School in 1956, and left immediately for Denver, Colo. She became an orthodontic assistant, a position she held for 14 years. She fell in love and married Bob, a station attendant for Braniff Airlines. A licensed pilot, he also owned his own flight school.

“Bob taught me how to fly, as well,” Jean said. “Yet, I never soloed. By that time, we began our family, Mike, Chelle, and Mitch.”

Bob retired from the airlines, after a 30-year career, 27 years with Braniff. He got his commercial drivers’ license, purchased a semi and began hauling grain for the ethanol industry. Jean had also changed careers, becoming a licensed practical nurse in 1994. She was employed in hospice until her retirement two years ago.

They now are able to summer in South Dakota and in Colorado where they have a cabin, and winter in Nebraska, she said.

“Bob still is employed in trucking because he simply has to keep busy,” she said.

Jean learned the fundamentals of cooking from her mom who was a great cook, she said. She also acquired the art of cooking wild game, as the entire family loves to hunt and fish.

“Pressure cooking is the secret to tenderizing venison,” she said. “And, yes, I’ve had the pressure gauge hit the ceiling a couple times!”

Jean learned to cook authentic Mexican cuisine from a good friend and neighbor.

“The children all worked with her in high school,” she said, “and we all have learned the authentic cuisine. Although authentic Mexican cooking is labor intensive, I love to cook and eat Mexican food!”

Her worst cooking experience, she said, would have to be when she was grilling and her hair caught fire.

“My granddaughter thought I looked pretty funny without eyebrows,” she said.

That could hardly compare with the hair-raising experiences she has had recently. While cleaning one of the cabins at the marina, she heard the distinctive rattle of a rattlesnake. Just about to empty the trash from the galvanized trash container, she resourcefully slammed the lid down on top of the critter and used her cell phone to summon help from her grandson, Brent, dock agent at the Marina. After Brent shot the snake, it was found to have seven rattles.

Recently Jean used her right foot in her attempt to stop the runaway golf cart she uses in her travels to clean the cabins. She ended up breaking her ankle. She’s currently on the mend with her ankle encased in a walking boot.

She and Bob also enjoy visiting their daughter Chelle, a clinic nurse in Nebraska, and Mitch, an engineer at Shriver Air Force Base in Colorado, and 12 grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.

“There is a total of 30 of us,” she said.

This October she will be traveling to Germany to visit a former exchange student they hosted many years ago.


Jean Norder’s Recipes 

Taco Pie
1 pkg. crescent rolls
1 lb. hamburger
1 carton sour cream
1 cup cottage cheese
1 can diced green chilies
1 pkg. taco seasoning
1 bag Doritos (crushed)
Shredded cheddar cheese
1 onion (chopped)
Prepare hamburger and add taco seasoning as directed. Mix sour cream, cottage cheese, and diced green chilies together. Line deep-dish pie plate with crescent rolls. Put crescent rolls bottom layer in the oven at 350 degrees for 5 minutes and remove and layer. This seals the crust. Layer hamburger, sour cream mixture, Doritos, shredded cheese and onion. Place back in oven for 30 to 40 minutes. Add more cheese to the top just before removing from oven. Sour cream can be drizzled on each serving.

Corn tortillas dipped in cooking oil
Beef roast (shredded)
Mozzarella cheese (shredded)
1 onion (chopped)
Fill corn tortillas and grill on griddle until cheese melts and tortillas are golden brown.

Quick Dessert
1 can sliced peaches with juice
1 pecan cake mix
1 stick of butter (melted)
Crushed pecans
Whipped cream
Place sliced peaches with juice in a 9-inch by 13-inch pan. Cover with cake mix. Pour juice over pecan cake mix. Drizzle butter over dry cake mix. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes. Just before removing, put crushed pecans on top and whipped cream after it’s cool.

Filled Crescents
1 tube crescent rolls
Apple or cherry pie filling
Vegetable oil for deep fat frying
Fill unrolled crescent rolls with pie filling and pinch crescent rolls after filling. Deep fry and roll in sugar and cinnamon.

Rich and Quick Peanut Butter Cookies
1 egg
1 cup chunky peanut butter
Mix together and spoon on cookie sheet.  Bake at 325 degrees about 7 minutes (and watch closely as they will burn easily). Cool on cookie sheet. Makes about a dozen cookies.

Bob’s Legendary Marinated Beef Tongue
Pressure cook the beef tongue until done; peel it and then slice it up. Put in a gallon jar with juices from cooking the tongue. Cover with water and add 2 cups of vinegar and a pound of brown sugar to marinate. Ready to eat in as little as one hour.




Want to read more?

Click here to subscribe to our online e-edition or click here to have our print edition delivered to your door.


Mobridge Spotlight



News Archive