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North Dakota Studies Class Community Forum a success

By Staff | May 12, 2017

Submitted photo Members of the ND Studies class at Rugby High School, taught by instructor Kevin Leier (left), pose for a photo during a recent trip to Fargo. The class held a community forum last week on their downtown Rugby project. Pictured (left to right): Ashlee Johnson, Madison Fossum, Sara Bourne, Keaton Larson, Makenah Bundy, Shawn Schaan, Gabe Clements, Kyle Ebach and John Mueller

Rugby High School’s North Dakota Studies Class held a community forum last Thursday, May 4 in the RHS Auditorium.

The event was well attended, with several area business owners in the audience.

The students showcased their 11-minute documentary on the history of Rugby’s downtown. The purpose of the project was to look at the history of Rugby’s downtown and how it can be used in the future to bring back the vibrancy of Main Street and the downtown area.

Lt. Governor Brent Sanford was the evening’s guest speaker, and he shed light on Gov. Doug Burgum’s Main Street Initiative, which aligns with many of the points in the students’ project.

Sanford explained how both downtown Fargo and downtown Watford City were both revitalized using the governor’s Main Street Initiative and how Rugby can also use the same ideas.

“The long term goal of this initiative is to build permanent family infrastructure to keep people here,” he said. “Build for the future. Give a reason for people to come here, and give a reason for people to stay here.”

Several of the students in the class gave reasons why they enjoyed working on this project, including Keaton Larson, who said, “[This project] was a great way to end my high school career.”

Shawn Schaan also spoke, saying, “Getting to go to all the businesses downtown was the highlight of this project for me.”

The class documentary on the history of downtown Rugby is posted on YouTube for viewers to watch, titled “Rugby North Dakota Downtown Project.”

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