150th celebration brings in donations

The Flandreau Development Corporation voted last week to give $7,500 to the Flandreau Sesquicentennial Committee to use for the community event next summer that includes an all-school reunion.
“We have a lot of exciting things. Everything’s just falling together now,” said Dan Sutton with the committee. “We think that it does meet promotional purposes and it also can meet economic purposes due to the number of people that are coming to town,” he said in his request for support from the FDC.
The money is part of the event’s $60,000 budget. The committee has a $15,000 commitment from the city and other money pledged by business sponsors. It continues to look for donors.
The event will include a $15,000 price tag for an inflatable park instead of a carnival. It also includes a kick-off concert for $5,000 that hasn’t been booked yet, $7,270 for community banners, $2,000 for a community breakfast, $8,000 in printing and $3,000 for portable restrooms as some of the costs for the event.
The committee also has promotional items planned, including shirts, buttons, wine and mugs. The wine will have a Flandreau label and be available at Maynard’s, Sutton said.
While the FDC has had to look at how it is providing promotional money to groups in town because there is a limited amount, board members agreed that the event was one of those times where support is especially important.
“I think when this first came up I was kind of uneasy about the size of the request,” said board member Jason Unger. “I think this is unique. Sitting here right now I think we find the money and contribute. There’s a ton of work going into this.”
Several committee members said the event will draw people to Flandreau, will boost business all over town and may encourage people to consider moving to the community.
FDC board members also said they will need other events that ask for money to send a representative in person to make the request. Available money is limited and the FDC needs to be good stewards of that, said President Carleen Wild Wilson.
In other business news,
•The Spot is for sale for $84,500. The seasonal business owned by Sue Uilk of Pipestone, Minn., for about eight years, has been in operation for 59 years, Sutton said. The drive-in-style restaurant will not close, even if a buyer is not found, he said.
•A tree business has shown interest in moving to Flandreau and has inquired about what land might be available through the FDC, Sutton said. The owner is looking for space for both a sawmill and retail sales, he said.
•The FDC will not be able to take back the west portion of Tyler Kills-A-Hundred’s lot because the entire property was used as collateral on his business loan. The FDC board previously had voted to ask Kills-A-Hundred to deed the portion of the lot he is not using for his meat locker back to the organization.
Flandreau Meat Locker is under construction and scheduled to open in December.
•The board wants to talk to owners of Aquaponics because their business plan looks different than it had earlier. Developers of the company want to raise $1.5 million in capital before starting, said Wild Wilson. “Maybe they’re not in a place to need that land yet,” she said.
Board member Shawn Jaacks said that while he hopes that they do bring their operation to Flandreau, he has concerns.
“I’d like to get clarity on timelines,” he said. “I’m honestly concerned about seven acres of land in the middle of Flandreau that we gave away with good intentions.”

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