Klein Museum to ‘Celebrate Christmas’

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By Betty Street

Judy Curran and Diane Kindt

Judy Curran and Diane Kindt

This coming Saturday, Oct. 12, is going to be a busy one in the Mobridge environs, specifically because three important events are taking place on that day. The Mobridge Garden Club Fall Craft Fair will be held at Scherr-Howe Event Center from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. A soup and sandwich supper and senior citizens’ bazaar will be held at the Mobridge Senior Citizens’ Center from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
The third event is actually scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 12 and 13, at Klein Museum on West Highway 12. Museum Curator Diane Kindt and Board President Judy Curran, together with other board and foundation members and a host of volunteers, are setting up the museum to “Celebrate Christmas in October.”
The theme is Christmas carols and each of the exhibits will feature historical Mobridge artifacts to portray a different holiday song. Each exhibit, from the early doctor’s office to a kitchen from several generations ago to the display of musical instruments, is clever and sparkling. There is a lot for everyone to see.
Diane was born and raised in Mobridge. She graduated from Mobridge High School in 1962. Diane is married to Harry “Bingo” Kindt, an insurance agent/cabinet maker who is also president of the Mobridge-Pollock School Board.
Diane said most of her time, now that her children are grown and gone, is involved with Klein Museum. Her main hobby is reading, and she mentioned a book, “Meadowlark,” by Dawn Wink, which is based on the story of Dawn’s own great-grandmother and her life on the South Dakota plains. The story is unforgettable, she said.
Judy is from Glenham and graduated from Glenham High School in 1963. Now a retired nurse, she works one or two days a week at Homespun in downtown Mobridge and several days a week at the museum. She spends a lot of time canning the produce from the extensive garden maintained by husband Jim, who is also retired.
Both women said working with the museum has changed their lives. Diane said she is more aware of Mobridge’s history, both the good and bad parts. For example, at one time the gift shop carried some postcards about General Custer. A customer took offense that those post cards were in the museum’s gift shop. Diane told the person, “It happened, the good and the bad. We have to make sure the history is preserved” and made known.
The difference working with the museum has made in Judy’s life, she said, is that she “learned so much about the history of Mobridge and the surrounding area.” Of course, being from Glenham, she knows more about Glenham and that area than others do, Diane added.
One regret both ladies have is that they “don’t have a lot of young people who come through the museum.”
The museum has an operating budget of $57,000 every year, and they hold fundraisers for $47,000 of that amount. During summer months, outdoor markets are held twice a month, and about $2,000 was earned from that this past summer. Then they hold the Harvest Festival and membership drives and gift shop profits help a lot.
On Saturday, the gift shop will feature South Dakota-made items in addition to candy and baked goods (see recipes below) contributed by volunteers and friends of the museum. There is a fee to get into the museum to Celebrate Christmas in October.

DIANE AND JUDY’S RECIPES

Peanut Brittle
2 cups sugar
1 cup water
1 cup light corn syrup
2 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. butter (do not substitute margarine)
2 cups peanuts (if unsalted, add ¼ tsp. salt)*
2 tsp. vanilla
Combine sugar, corn syrup and water in a deep, heavy pan. Cook slowly and stir until sugar dissolves. Cook to the soft ball stage (about 238 degrees). Stir in butter and peanuts (I put them in a microwave bowl and heat for about 25 seconds. This takes the chill off before adding them to the hot syrup.) Cook this mixture to the hard crack stage (about 290 degrees). Remove from heat. Very carefully, stir in vanilla and soda (soda will make the candy puff). Keep stirring until ingredients are completely stirred together. Pour into a 13”x17” pan that has been lined with heavy tin foil that has been coated with butter. This is extremely hot and thick, so you need to spread it with a wooden spoon. It will spread out a little more as it cools. Cool completely and break into the size pieces that you want.
*Nuts may have skins on and you can leave them on. Be sure and stir candy as it reaches hard crack stage because you do not want the nuts to stick to bottom of pan. I always use a wooden spoon.

Judy Curran’s Perfect Apple Pie
5-7 tart apples
1 cup white sugar
2 Tbsp. flour
1/8 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
¼ tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. red Jell-O (any flavor)
Plain pastry
Butter
Pare and slice apples. Use a few drops of lemon juice so apples aren’t tart. Mix in bowl with other ingredients; mix well. Put in raw crust; dot with butter. Cover with top crust. Brush top crust with milk. Sprinkle with sugar. Bake in 450 degree oven for 10 minutes, then in 350 degree oven for about 40 minutes.

Farm House Cookies or Homespun Cookies
½ cup margarine
½ cup Butter Flavored Crisco
2 cups white sugar
2 eggs
1 cup sour cream
1 tsp. vanilla
½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. soda
4 tsp. baking powder
4½ cups flour
Cream shortening, butter and sugar; add eggs and beat. Add sour cream and vanilla. Mix dry ingredients and add to creamed mixture. Drop by tablespoonsful and press down (opt.). Bake 15-18 minutes at 350 degrees or until set. Frost while warm with powdered sugar frosting. Sprinkle colored sugar for more color at Christmas. This recipe was borrowed from the Wessel Family Cookbook and was put in it by the late Elsie Wessel. The recipe was not shared until Homespun quit making cookies.

Frannie’s Stuffed Pepper Soup
2 lbs. ground beef
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper
½ med. onion, chopped
1 32-oz. can tomato juice
¼ cup brown sugar
2 cups green pepper, chopped
2 cans (10.5 oz.) chicken broth
1 28-oz. can diced tomatoes
1½ cups Minute Rice (either brown or white)
Brown hamburger with salt, pepper and onions. Add all remaining ingredients except rice. Simmer 30 to 40 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in rice. Cover for 10 minutes and serve. So good! Even if you don’t like green peppers, you will like this!

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