Friday, March 20, 2009

Hazel Morthland dies at age 101

Hazel Morthland, 100, of Rapid City and formerly of Deadwood and long time Deadwood School 6th Grade Teacher, died on Thursday, March 19, 2009, one day short of her 101 birthday, at Westhills Village Health Care in Rapid City.  

She truly loved everyone of us students and remembered each of us until the end.  We will miss her loving touch and thoughts.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Old Style Saloon No. 10 Is Up for Sale

After 45 years the Keehn family is selling this historic Deadwood location business. The business includes the famous Main Street saloon, the upstairs Deadwood Social Club restaurant and neighboring Utters Place. For more details and colorful history see the RC Journal article. 

Kevin Costner was a regular at the Old Style when he was first attracted to Deadwood during his movie "Dances with the Wolves".  He and his Brother Dan bought the "New York Store" building at 677 Main Street.  The building was gutted and rebuilt as a new four floor "Midnight Star" gaming establishment.  It included Kevin's movie memorabilia displays, casual eating area, and a then exclusive 5 Star restaurant.  The Midnight Star was the saloon name used in Kevin's "Silverado" movie.

Deadwood Gaming is now nearly 20 years old and is growing with newer and grander establishments. Proponents of Deadwood Gaming could never have imagined the actual growth which passed the $1 Billion mark in 2007.  Deadwood Gaming taxes have provided for new installed city infrastructure services of water, sewer, power and gas.  The whole city Deadwood city area is a State/National Historic Landmark District so it must be maintained to preserve the architectural intent of its period.  New gaming/services establishments offer new versions of the historical period and older establishments struggle to renew and compete with the new and attractive. The old Deadwood was never designed with major parking needs in mind.  Deadwood continues to change and holds to its historical transient growth nature.  Deadwood Gaming provides a veneer of new and renewed buildings that offer limited growth, service sector employment.  The Deadwood average income is about half of the national average.  However, Deadwood continues to reinvent itself and was nominated as #2 of the Top 10 True Western Towns in 2008 <==Click.

See neat slide show . . . No. 10 Saloon Slide Show . <==Click

Interesting items:  The Deadwood Gaming buildings may soon become smoke free.  Also the most popular slot machines now are the penny slots.  These slots are big money makers for Deadwood and the State.  The nickel slots are quickly being converted to penny.  New slot machines are now multi-denominational.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Lily the Homeless Stray Dog Joins Bob Beshara

DickD Note: After you read the neat story about Lily and Bob come back and sign the "Friends of Bob Beshara Guestbook" <==Click and tell Bob what you think of Lily and his courage.

The Beshara family takes each day with Bob and shares this quote . . . " Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage."

Bob Beshara is a son of Bill Beshara DHS55 and Sandy Gravelle Beshara DHS57. In March of 2007, Bob was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. It is a progressive, neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord. He is confined to a wheelchair and does not get out as often as he would like, which is difficult for the man who has been the face of Rapid City’s Colonial House Restaurant for nearly 27 years.

Until November 2008, he had been able to continue working at the restaurant for a few hours a day, greeting and visiting with the customers. The cold weather and the toll of the disease have meant more time confined at home. Right around the time he stopped going in regularly, he said, depression set in.

“Right around last Thanksgiving, I got depressed,” Bob said. “I wouldn’t eat or drink any water. I had just given up.”

He said his daughters were frustrated and trying to think of something to lift his spirits. “The girls thought a dog would give me a will to live.”

He doesn’t know if Lily cured his depression, he said, but it subsided a couple of weeks after she came into his life.

Nicole said Stephaney wanted to get a highly trained service dog for their father, but after finding out what was involved, they decided to get a small, mellow adult female dog that could sit on their father’s lap. Every time they visited the Humane Society of the
Black Hills shelter, though, they were shown a dog that met all of the criteria except for size. Shelter staff believed Lily, a medium-sized shepherd mix, would be the perfect match — and they were right.

Bob said he was a little shocked when he saw Lily. “I wasn’t expecting a dog, and certainly not a big one,” he said.

By the next day or so, he realized she was the ideal dog. Lily is tall enough that Bob can reach her comfortably from his wheelchair. And as much as he would have liked a dog to sit on his lap, he said the weight would have been too painful for his legs.

“So she’s the perfect size. It’s like they just knew this was what I needed,” he said.

Even with her large size, Lily can maneuver around the house and manages not to interfere with Bob’s wheelchair. She keeps an eye out for the treat bag he keeps or for his outstretched hand.

Lily is the picture of health with puppy-like qualities and clear, happy eyes, showing no signs of her previous life. She was picked up as a homeless stray, with protruding ribs. Both of her canine teeth are broken, which the veterinarian said is indicative of a starving dog that has resorted to eating rocks.

Even in that poor condition, her good nature did not go unnoticed by animal shelter staff, which used Lily during her month long stay in the shelter as a companion for other dogs who needed socialization. The family members did not know of Lily’s history until after they had selected her.

When Bob had a feeding tube inserted in his stomach in December, he had the chills when he came home from the surgery, and his wife, Pam, invited Lily to sleep in the bed with him.

“Now every night she sleeps with me,” Bob said. “I get such a relaxing feeling just to pet her. It is nice and soothing.” . . .

Lily photo credits to Bill Beshara. Lily and Bob photo and compete newspaper article see Rapid City Journal <== Click

Bill Beshara Announces the 2009 DHS Reuion Scholarship

Bill asked me to post this year's notice of award that goes to winner Eric Quaschnick.  Eric will enter Automotive and Diesel Technology at the Western Dakota Tech in Rapid City, SD this fall.

This $600 award is the second of three yearly DHS Reunion scholarships given at Lead-Deadwood High School.  The scholarship award is funded by proceeds  that were announced at the final committee meeting of the 2007 All DHS Reuion <== Click

Monday, March 2, 2009

Go Deadwood Bears! As viewed from Montana.

Photo courtesty of professional photographer friend   Amanda Barber <==Click

"Thank you for being a site follower and 
for sharing your pictures of our school emblem."