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No joke! We forgot to create one

By Chuck Hunt - Editor | Apr 6, 2021

I really can’t believe this happened. I am really embarrassed.

I blame it on the COVID-19 pandemic, and the fact that we have not had a “normal” week here at the Register for over a year now. I also blame it on the fact that April 1 was in the middle of the week and it sort of, well, snuck up on us.

Whatever the reason, we kind of forgot all about having an April Fool’s Day story in last week’s edition of the Faribault County Register. For the first time in 50 some years, I think, although to be honest, I did not really check the records.

Remarkably, not a single person has mentioned to me the fact that there did not seem to be a fake story last week. No one wondered about it, or questioned what story it was, or wasn’t there one.

So perhaps our forgetting to do it means that it is time to quit that long-time tradition. Perhaps it has run its course. Perhaps it is one more thing that has gone away due to the coronavirus.

However, to be honest we did not have one last year either. Remember?

We just let everyone think that a story about there being a beer shortage at the new Wells Liquor Depot store was the fake April Fool’s Day story. Former Register staff writer Katie Mullaly did an excellent job of writing that story to make it sound like an April Fool’s Day story, including adding the fact that the new cases of Bud Light were going to arrive on April 1.

However, every word of that story was true. People were drinking more beer than ever before because of the pandemic. However, to this day many folks still think that story was our April Fool’s effort, just as we had thought they would.

Last year we also had a front-page story just after April Fools Day about a Cabin Coffee franchise being planned to be built in Blue Earth. Many folks considered that could be our annual spoof story, especially since it mentioned that the franchise papers had been signed on April 1.

The fact that a front-page story this week is all about the Cabin Coffee restaurant now being open proves the story last year was not made up. It simply sounded like it. After all, would John Huisman really jump in and start a Cabin Coffee? The answer is yes, he would.

The Bud Light shortage in Wells last year was not the first time our fake April Fool’s story was actually real. A few years ago we had a story on the front page of our April 1 edition which told about Preparation H coming to Kiester, Minnesota, to make a TV commercial. A classic effort of April Fool’s humor if I have ever seen one, only it wasn’t because it was also absolutely true. There is no way that that particular year we could have come up with a better story than the one that was actually true.

A story about a Chick-fil-A restaurant coming to Blue Earth a few years ago was totally made up. Many people went for the story hook, line and sinker and were plenty upset when they found out it was not true. We learned our lesson that lots of folks are pretty fanatic when it comes to getting some fast food.

Ironically, our made-up new Chick-fil-A restaurant in our past April Fool’s story was supposedly going to be built right where the new Cabin Coffee is actually now located. A bit of a premonition on our part, perhaps?

There have been other stories on a variety of topics in the past. There was one about some old movie reels being found in the soon-to-be torn down Avalon Theater building, drilling for oil in the hills around Kiester, building an amusement park in Guckeen, and delaying the construction of the new Faribault County Law Enforcement Center because some of Blue Earth’s precious blue clay was found during the excavation, just to name a few.

One story which caused quite a stir was the one about the BEA School being renamed Faribault County West and the USC School being renamed Faribault County East.

The story claimed the two superintendents were secretly meeting to create the new names for the schools to present to their respective school boards.

Both superintendents knew we were doing the fake story, but they did take quite a bit of heat over it from board members and members of the public who had not read all the way to the end to see it was all an April Fool’s Day joke.

We hope you have enjoyed all those past efforts at April Fool’s Day stories in the Register. Admittedly, some were pretty good, some were fairly lame. It was a good run while it lasted and made for some great humor, but perhaps it is just fine that we give it a rest.

And, once again, we sincerely apologize to those who were looking for a fake story last week and we are so sorry that we totally forgot all about having one in the Register this year.

Or did we?