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GooseFest pickup winner's newest vehicle was a 1999 work truck...

Rob Fonder used to hunt often in the Kenmare area and to maintain that connection, he purchases at least one GooseFest raffle ticket each year.

11/03/15 (Tue)

Loves his new pickup... Rob Fonder, Minot, left, the grandprize winner of the GooseFest raffle, drives away Tuesday with a brand new Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck. Fonder, who bought one ticket this year, said it's the best $30 he's ever spent. GooseFest committee member Jamie Livingston, turned the keys over to Fonder after he was officially announced the winner.

By Marvin Baker

Rob Fonder used to hunt often in the Kenmare area and to maintain that connection, he purchases at least one GooseFest raffle ticket each year.

But this time it was different when Becky Nelson of Vets Gaming called the Minot man to tell him he was the grand prize winner in the raffle.

“Initially, I thought it was a prank,” Fonder said. “I’m just helping out the GooseFest. I never honestly thought I’d win it.”

But win it he did and on Tuesday (Oct. 27) GooseFest committee member Jamie Livingston handed Fonder the keys to a 2015 Chevrolet Silverado valued at approximately $43,000.

Fonder bought his ticket at North Winds Truck Accessories in Minot from sales person Morgan Page, who will receive $250 for selling the winning ticket.

“I was looking for a chrome gas-cap cover and I saw the tickets on the counter,” Fonder said. “Morgan asked me if I wanted to buy one. I said yes, it would be the best $30 I’ve ever spent.”

Fonder owns and operates a lawn-car company in Minot, but what is interesting is up until Tuesday, he didn’t have a personal vehicle. His “newest” vehicle is a 1999 workmodel.

“I gave my son my only personal vehicle (Chevrolet Avalanche),” he said. “I had only work trucks.”

It’s seems ironic to Fonder as well that his neighbor purchased the same truck on the same day he was notified he was the winner.

“The same day I got called, he just bought a Silverado,” Fonder said. “I went and talked to him and said I got one too.”

He added his neighbor, of course, didn’t believe him. “But now he knows,” Fonder said.

Kent Hartleib sold Fonder the lawn care business and is one of his friends. Hartleib was tasked with driving Fonder’s work truck back to Minot.

Hartleib didn’t know what to think when Fonder told him they were taking a Tuesday afternoon ride to Kenmare.

“I thought he was lying,” Hartleib said. “I really didn’t know what else to think.”

Fonder’s winning ticket, No. 125, has certainly made him a believer. He keeps the lucky ticket in his pocket and intends to have it laminated.

“I’ll keep buying tickets every year,” Fonder said. “Oh no, I’ll buy tickets every year.”

Already, he said his son wants to swap the new ride for the Avalanche.

But that isn’t going to happen, according to Fonder. In fact, there was no way he was letting Hartleib drive it back – a ride in it, perhaps, but not the 52-mile trip.

“I like the color, I like it, the whole truck is nice,” Fonder said. “I can’t wait to drive it. I don’t know what to do. I’m still in shock.”

Fonder said he has given the option of taking cash instead of the truck, but he didn’t hesitate to accept the new Chevrolet.

He said he will always be grateful to GooseFest and the people of Kenmare for continuing such a wonderful fall festival.

“I can’t tell you how much I appreciate GooseFest,” he said. “I don’t know what else to say. Thank you.” ... Read EVERY WORD on EVERY PAGE of The Kenmare News by subscribing--online or in print!