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Commissioners agree on roof repair for Little Red Schoolhouse

The mysterious Little Red Schoolhouse has left a lot of people wondering who owns it and who’s responsible for repairs.

The Wadena County Fair Board previously told county commissioners that it had no interest in paying for repairs, so the county will be covering the cost. After commissioners toured the building on May 2, it took a few meetings for them to decide on a plan for the building’s future.

At a county board meeting May 16, County Engineer Ryan Odden secured an agreement with the county board. Commissioners decided to tear off old shakes and install a cost effective steel roof. Local contractors will start renovating the run-down, leaking roof in July or August. The intent is to keep the historic building dependable at a reasonable cost.

Renovations were last made in 1981 and 2001.

Although the roof won’t be done in time for the Wadena County Fair in June, Odden and commissioners have a plan to make minor fixes to insure it’s secure until the renovation.

Community members expressed they would prefer cedar shakes in the future to retain the authenticity of the schoolhouse.

Odden, commissioners and community members are hopeful a grant may arise in the future to help keep the historical schoolhouse roof looking the same as it once did.

Discussions arise concerning speedway on Wadena County Fairgrounds

Joel Novak and Mike Olson came before the county board at its most recent meeting to ask for the building of a speedway on the Wadena County Fairgrounds. The duo believe it would bring a lot of entertainment to the city and county.

Commissioners decided they need more answers and information before they can come to a settlement. Novak and Olson have minimum requirements of marking out the track, packing it and grading it. They would also install barriers where people or property could possibly be affected, put up catch fences for flying debris and install a speaker system. Over time, they hope to improve and add on to the amenities.

The final decision about the track was deferred until a future board meeting.

Work to be done at Veterans Memorial Park

Also at the meeting, Ryan Odden came before the board seeking $1,700 for materials to relocate a veterans monument to Veterans Memorial Park.

Odden is seeking approval to take the monument out of storage at the fairgrounds for placement at the park. The motion was approved by commissioners to make modifications to the existing site plan.

Other news

On May 16, the board also:

  • Approved a motion for the solid waste committee to advertise a baler for sale on an auction site.
  • Thanked Rosalie Miller after her retirement for many years of service as an election coordinator.
  • Learned Kyra Ladd, Wadena County Attorney, was selected out of 100 people in the nation, and is one of just two in the state, to attend a conference in St. Paul on reimaging the child welfare system.
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