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Oddchester: Rochester ranked best college town?

February 7, 2019
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... In truth, the cheery wooden snowman had suffered a more ignominious fate.

The two men loaded the stolen ATM into the passenger seat of a Toyota Prius. We’re the Best College Town In Minnesota! “Free: 217,156 cubic feet of snow. Like new.”

It’s our annual Rochies, a look back at some of the more interesting — and by “more interesting” we mean “What the heck?” — area stories of 2018.

It’s because of our football tailgating! And frat parties! And our picturesque, sprawling campus! And … wait. What?

In August, the website Review.org, in its annual list of Best College Towns, named Rochester the “Best College Town in Minnesota.” We ranked Number 10— IN THE NATION! — for college towns with the BEST NIGHTLIFE AND FUN!

He’s got a corncob pipe, a button nose, and was last seen wearing an old silk hat I found.

In February, after a large snowfall, a Rochester man reported the theft of a wooden snowman that had been screwed to the homeowner’s fence. “Stolen snowman! Eastwood neighborhood,” read the post on the Nextdoor app. “Someone unscrewed our wooden snowman from our fence and made off with it. It’s been in the family for decades and would appreciate you keeping an eye out for it. Thanks.”

Nevermind! He came back again someday.

In March, after a warm spell melted large snow piles, the Rochester man reported that his stolen snowman had been found. It had fallen into a snowpile next to the fence. “Stolen snowman found!” read his post. “Mystery of the stolen snowman solved!”

It was nonstop. Not the flight, the groping.

In January, a local couple was arrested for “engaging in gross lewdness or lascivious behavior.” On a Sun Country flight. From Vegas to Minneapolis. In their seats. One witness described the couple’s behavior as “nonstop.” When a flight attendant took away the couple’s blanket, the woman allegedly stood on her seat and declared: “I’m going to have your jobs, and I’m going to get free tickets.”

Craigslist needs a new category: Spring Sarcasm.

This was posted on April 16, following yet another big snowfall: “Free: 217,156 cubic feet of snow. Like new. Size/dimensions: 466’ X 466’ X 1’. Approx. 5 acres of free snow. Bring a shovel.”

“All units, be on the lookout for an Olds Delta 88 that keeps driving progressively slower and slower!”

In June, according to Minnesota Department of Transportation reports, an “elderly man” drove through 800 feet of freshly poured concrete on U.S. Highway 63 and caused an estimated $100,000 in damage.

“All units, be on the lookout for a Toyota Prius, traveling at speeds up to 8 mph and leaning heavily to the passenger side!”

In March, Rochester police were called to a hotel after employees said two men wearing ski masks entered the building and stole an ATM from the first floor. The men, police were told, loaded the ATM into the passenger seat of a Toyota Prius. Police set up a perimeter and stopped the Prius with two men, and an ATM, inside.

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