Ostrander takes over as manager at The Barn

Buffalo Center native Dean Ostrander is taking a break from his life in Montana to serve as manager at The Barn at Gruis Recreation Area this summer.

The golf season is underway at Gruis Recreation Area, and there is a new manager this year at the clubhouse.

Dean Ostrander started as a manager at The Barn on March 11, when the golf course was still covered with snow. He will be assisting golfers as they sign up for memberships and pay their green fees, and he will also run the restaurant at The Barn.

Ostrander is a native of Buffalo Center but has spent most of his life in Montana, where he keeps a home at Great Falls. He graduated with Buffalo Center’s second largest class of all-time in 1969 and attended Mankato State University before heading west to Montana.

He has held many jobs over the years, including a movie theaters, Arby’s restaurants, title and payday loan services, and he worked as a tennis club manager in Palm Springs, CA. He got tired of the heat down there, so he moved back to Montana to enjoy the seasons.

Last October, Ostrander retired as ombudsman of an assisted living facility in Cascade County, MT. He was making plans for the summer, but instead he decided to come back to the Buffalo Center area to help his parents. He is the son of Grant and Barb Ostrander, and he wanted to help them as they made a transition from life on the farm to life at an assisted living facility.

Ostrander says work at The Barn is very different from his previous restaurant experiences.

“I opened up a lot of Arby’s stores, but when you do something like that, they give you a schedule,” said Ostrander. “With something like this, you just kind of wing it.”

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