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Donna Monteith, Grandin, N.D., Published January 28 2014

Letter: Welk was smarter than we in ND are

I have been following the discussion of the purchase of the Lawrence Welk home near Strasburg, N.D., with great interest. It reminds me of something that occurred nearly 25 years ago.

I left North Dakota for three years to attend seminary in Austin, Texas. During my senior year, I was asked to preach one Sunday in west Texas, very near the border with New Mexico, so that two churches from New Mexico could hear me preach and decide if they wanted to call me to be their pastor. My father was a big fan of Western history, so I routed my travel so that I could stop at the Judge Roy Bean Museum. When I got there, I was asked to sign the guestbook. I listed my address as North Dakota, and everyone working there got very excited. I was given all sorts of trinkets and information and introduced to everyone there.

I told this story to my classmates over coffee on Monday morning because I thought it was a little strange. One of classmates said, “But don’t you think if someone from Texas were to stop at the Lawrence Welk Museum, they would cause the same excitement?” I told him, “No, because the Welk Museum is in Escondido, (Calif.).”

My point is, Welk was a savvy businessman. He established his museum in his adopted home because it was good business. He could have put it in North Dakota, but he did not. Do we think we are smarter than he was?