Herald JournalHoward Lake-Waverly Herald, Aug. 5, 2002

Howard Lake Drug marks its 85th anniversary

By Lynda Jensen

In 1917, a business formed in Howard Lake that would outlast the Great Depression, two world wars, economic recessions . . . and most recently, the reconstruction of Highway 12.

Howard Lake Drug is observing its 85th year of operation; something very few businesses can claim.

It has been at the same location along Highway 12 since 1925. In fact, the original tin ceiling is still intact, along with wall fixtures and the same soda fountain installed by Scheer in 1947, making it one of the oldest original drug stores in the state.

The soda fountain recently gained news coverage by the Star Tribune newspaper when it listed Howard Lake Drug as an original establishment, complete with a seven-stool soda fountain and a mudball specialty (a mudball is a vanilla ice cream sundae topped with chocolate syrup and peanuts).

Mudballs are still made today, Marilyn Ringold said. In fact, recently the drug store was visited by a woman from Honolulu and man from Seattle, looking for the mudballs, because of the Tribune article.

Longtime proprietors John and Marilyn Ringold plan to have an anniversary party at the store 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday, Aug. 9. There will be free ice cream cones, hot dogs and music by Patty Munson.

The Ringolds have owned the pharmacy for 24 years. The business has been only under four sets of proprietors during the 85 years it has operated.

From 1917 to 1937, Wes Scheer and R. E. Bushey operated it, from 1937 to 1948 Scheer operated it alone, from 1948 to 1978 Robert Rekedal operated it, and then the Ringolds from 1978 to the present.

The drug store was first formed when two Howard Lake pharmacies were merged into one.

The following news account in the May 31, 1917 Herald documents this merger:

Drug Stores Combined

A business deal of considerable importance was closed yesterday whereby W.A. Scheer and R. Bushey became the owners of the Workman Drug and Grocery store.

Mr. Scheer has for the past year and a half conducted the New Drug Store, and Mr. Bushey, who comes from Little Falls, is also a pharmacist with considerable experience.

The new proprietors will move the stock from the New Drug Store to the Workman building in a very short time.

Scheer served the Howard Lake community for many years, and then retired from the pharmacy business in 1948, when Bob and Ruth Rekedal purchased the business.

Rekedal's tenure was first reported in the Herald when it changed hands in 1978.

New Owners of Howard Lake Drug Store

Transfer of ownership of one of Howard lake's oldest businesses took place on Saturday August 5, when Bob Rekedal sold the Howard Lake Drug and Realty Building to John Ringold of Stillwater, Minnesota.

Today, the drug store holds many memories, along with vintage early 1900s prescriptions on the shelves for show.

John Ringold hopes that small town, family owned pharmacies will continue to prosper and serve their communities.


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