Why We Moved to Webster/Day County

Read the stories of our neighbors--those who have moved back after spending time away from Day County--in a series from Reporter & Farmer called "Coming Home" that began in 2013.

“There are not many places you can put in a full day’s work, then go hunting and fishing – all in one day,” Jennifer Nelson said. “The area of Webster is great. It’s been nice coming back, people have just welcomed me,” she said. “I’m looking forward to becoming more involved in the community.” Read More >

Jim Rood only spent a few months as a Butler resident, but his summer visits to his grandparents' and relatives' farms were so memorable that he always knew he would return to his roots in Day County.  In 1998, he and his wife, Sandra, jumped at the opportunity to purchase a farm that had been in the Rood family since 1905. Today, Rood enjoy volunteering and visiting his grandchildren in the Twin Cities, MN. Read More >

Photo Credit: Reporter & Farmer, Amanda Fanger
“I like the rural setting with the hunting and the fishing opportunities,” Loren Hoberg said. Read More >

“We couldn’t wait to get back,”Alice Peterson said. “It was just like we were never gone. It’s just the closeness of everybody.” Jim added, "It’s always nice to come back." Read More >

“We’ve just decided we’re staking our lives and dreams in this place,” Doug Hansen said. “Life kind of changes along the way. Those life changes are just part of our dream now.” Read More >

“By then, the kids were getting old enough and were saying, ‘do we really have to move again?’” Joanne Herr said. “Eventually I said, that’s enough. Let’s go home.” Read More >

Photo Credit: Reporter & Farmer, Amanda Fanger
“I keep busy in the community, I keep busy with my family,” Peterson said. “I’m grateful. I’m pretty well hooked to this area. This is a nice place to live in.” Read More >

“I have 10 acres here, so there’s room for lots of gardening,” she said with a laugh. In fact, she has help through locals Erik Seppanen and Carly Stoneman. “They help out around here,” she said. “I couldn’t do it without them. There’s so much to do here.” Read More >

Photo Credit: Reporter & Farmer, Amanda Fanger
“That’s why you travel, to see other places, other things... but the best thing about traveling is always coming home,” Robert Kwasniewski said. Read More >

“I don’t regret coming back at all. It’s a lot easier to raise kids in a small town. You can let them go play in the front yard and know they’ll still be there the next time you look out the window, or that they won’t be very far," said Leanne Harrington. Read More >

Photo Credit: Reporter & Farmer, Amanda Fanger
“Living in Webster is like having a really big family. You get to know people and hear their stories,” Darin Waldner said. “People from town stop me all the time and ask what I'm up to now, and they genuinely care.” Read More >

“I feel very lucky to have had good jobs all these years,” Linda Hoberg said. “I’ve worked for some good people and have had good co-workers too. I’ve worked with some great people who take pride in their work.” Read More >

Photo Credit: Reporter & Farmer, Amanda Fanger
“I’m really proud of what my children have done,” Kathy Sannes said. “It’s good to know your children believe in the community enough to come back and make it a better place than where they grew up.” Read More >

“In the summer, we’re up at the lakes almost every weekend,” Loren Schoenbeck said. Read More >

Photo Credit: Reporter & Farmer, Amanda Fanger
“I want to keep the money in Day County. When you leave the area to spend your money, it doesn’t help anybody out,” Johnson remarked. Read More >

“I just thought, I’m going to get involved and I haven’t regretted it since,” Nancy Porter said. Read More >

Photo Credit: Reporter & Farmer, Amanda Fanger
“There are a lot of things you can do within driving distance," commented Mary Halbkat. Read More >

Paul Moxness says, “We’ve lived near Chicago, near Minneapolis and by comparison, this area in South Dakota does a great job of providing opportunities for people.” Paul said. “Sometimes we forget the opportunities we have in this area. The Coteau Hills really have some interesting things.” Read More >

Photo Credit: Reporter & Farmer, Amanda Fanger

“It’s the safer living” of this area, Russell Larson said. “Every other place I’ve felt the need to have a gun for protection.” Looking back, Monica says, “I don’t know where our kids would be now it we weren’t living here. They had 4-H and FFA... they weren’t really sports kids, but because we lived here we were comfortable with letting them go to a neighbor’s house alone or to hang out with friends and knowing they were going to be safe.” Read More >

“It was a decision to raise our kids here,” Suzanne Olawsky said. “We definitely wanted South Dakota in their blood, and to be able to raise them in a small school.” Read More >

Photo Credit: Reporter & Farmer, Amanda Fanger

“I always liked the outdoors and hard work,” Larry Ewalt said. “Even today, I’m not afraid of pitching manure by hand (or some other labor-intensive job at the farm).” Read More >

In the other small towns she’s lived, Tammy Block says, “We became part of their family.” She took that as a lesson and now says, “I hope to be able to show that type of kindness to those who are new to our community now.” Read More >

Photo Credit: Reporter & Farmer, Amanda Fanger
“I convinced her this was the best place for us,” Alice Donat said. “It’s always been in the back of my mind to return.” Read More >

Kelli (Kuecker) Bullert came home in October 2012 to take on a new challenge in her hometown of Webster. While her bachelor's degree is in criminal justice and master's degree in public administration, Bullert was excited for a new career in mortgage banking. She lives in town with her husband Joey and one-year-old daughter, Penelope. Read More >

Photo Credit: Reporter & Farmer, Amanda Fanger
“Florida is a very expensive place to live,” Leon Herrick commented. “Even with both of us working in good jobs, we found that each month we were falling further and further behind financially... luckily, we still owned a home in rural Bristol, so we made the decision to return to South Dakota.” Read More >

Christa Coyne was a traveling nurse for eight years before moving back to her hometown of Webster. Six years ago, she purchased a home in Webster and returned on the weekends to work on it. It became harder to leave each time, so she jumped at the chance to work in Aberdeen in 2001. Today, she commutes from her home in Webster to Sanford in Aberdeen. Read More >

Photo Credit: Reporter & Farmer, Amanda Fanger
“You can’t get the kindness (anywhere else) like you can here,” she said. “Where else can you get someone to come out and help you step up the curb or carry your groceries to your car for you?” she said. “I consider these gifts and blessings.” Read More >

'Big Wave Dave' (aka David Premus) returned to his roots in 2011 after spending time in California and traveling in the military. Dave now lives in Webster with his wife and three children, and it sounds like he couldn't be happier!  Read More >

Photo Credit: Reporter & Farmer, Amanda Fanger
“You can’t get very far from the best hunting and fishing in South Dakota, " said Rodney Schlechter. Read More >