Looking Ahead to 2019: Flandreau's sesquicentennial

At the Feb. 21 Flandreau city council meeting, council members discussed the possibility of a celebration for 150 years (sesquicentennial) of Flandreau in 2019.

Council president Dan Sutton said he has been looking at old newspaper archives at the library and seeing what was done in town for the centennial celebration in 1969.

The three-day celebration had an alumni and all-school reunion, parades, rodeos, car shows and more. Sutton said 50 years ago over 10,000 people came to town for the events.

“I kind of have it in the back of my mind that we have a lot to celebrate,” Sutton said. “It would be a big boost and promotion for Flandreau.”

He said planning out such large events usually starts 18 months in advance, but that it’s not too early to start looking ahead.

Within the next six months, Sutton plans to reach out to those active in school reunions, civic and historical organizations as well as any committee members who helped in planning the centennial.

Because no special events for the 125th anniversary of Flandreau were held, Sutton said he thinks 150 years would be something positive to celebrate.

At the meeting, council members approved the transfer of a liquor license from David Estes back to Bruce Thorsen for BJ’s Fine Food and Spirits.

Of finding a buyer for the business, Sutton said, “There’s interest so hopefully they can get the business opened and operated soon.”

They also met with Jud Krull, Flandreau fire chief, about the purchase of a 1991 ladder truck to replace the current 1968 truck which doesn’t meet certifications.

The truck would cost $25,000 plus $10,000 for repairs and certification and $10,000 for hoses and nozzles.

Krull said the Santee Sioux Tribe is willing to split the cost with the fire department unless other entities in town are willing to contribute funding too.

In the past, the fire department has put over $55,000 of their fundraising money towards building trucks on their own. They have $15,000 to put towards the ladder truck.

The council, wanting to support the fire department, verified that the funds would be available and approved a motion to spend and not to exceed $10,000 towards the truck in conjunction with the other entities.

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