Pilot Rock Speaks: Tales from the Otto Farm

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Pilot Rock has inspired many people throughout history. Most recently, Rodney Otto has been inspired to write stories about our local landscape. All are welcome to join the Northwest Chapter of the Iowa Archaeology Society at the Sanford Museum and Planetarium in Cherokee at 6 p.m. on Wednesday September 6 to hear from Otto about his new book.

Inspired by the tragic tractor death of his brother on the family farm, the author tells two prehistoric tales of faith and family on the Otto farm in northwest Iowa. The first story is set in the Paleoindian era of hunters and gatherers. (7500 BC) The second story moves eight millennia forward to the Mill Creek Culture in the Oasis period of the Mid-Mississippian culture of villages. (1050 AD) The third story is historical fiction about the only Native American recorded near this farm, the Dakota Chief Inkpaduta. The fourth chapter is a memoir of twentieth century life on the Otto farm continuing the themes of tragedy, commitment to family, spiritual life, courage in face of death and respect for nature. These tales will inspire you to live to the full on your home place with passion to preserve the earth for future generations.

Rodney grew up on the Gary and Alura Otto organic farm in Pilot Township. He never lost his rural roots graduating from Aurelia HS, Concordia Unversity (BA), Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, Missouri (M Div) and Western Theological Seminary, Holland, MIichigan (D Min).

Recently retired, Rodney and his wife Phyllis enjoy music, reading and writing, Scrabble and Snatchit, HGTV, Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy, and visiting their family in North Carolina, California, Iowa and Grand Rapids, Michigan, where Phyllis and Rodney live.

The Northwest Chapter meets on the first Wednesday of every month at the Sanford Museum. This program is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Megan Stroh at the Sanford Museum by calling 712-225-3922 or e-mailing archaeologist@sanfordmuseum.org.

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