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What’s on your mind?

By Staff | Nov 17, 2017

Bonnie Remmick/PCT Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Miriah Koenig (left) and Rugby business owner Bonnie Berginski listen to discussions at the joint “What’s On Your Mind” event Tuesday. The next event will be held Dec. 12 at 7 p.m. at the Rugby Armory.

The Rugby Job Development Authority, Chamber of Commerce and Convention & Visitors Bureau conducted its “What’s On Your Mind” series Tuesday, November 14. This event is modeled to help community and business leaders gain a better perspective on Rugby’s evolving needs for economic growth and how to prioritize those goals.

At this week’s meeting, JDA Executive Director Liz Heisey lead the discussion to define objectives for the Comprehensive Plan. She presented Rugby demographic information, which prompted a conversation for the need for an activity center to be a priority for the upcoming 2019 Comprehensive Plan.

Bruce Rheault, formerly of Langdon, pointed out that Langdon’s Activity Center has been a beneficial addition to that community because it serves all ages. The center is a favorite gathering place for all members of the town and North Dakota State University utilizes the site for research as well.

Also being discussed was the Armory facility, recently vacated by the National Guard, but which is still being utilized by different organizations including additional classrooms for the high school. Making repairs and upgrades to the existing armory was discussed. This will be added to the list for community consideration. “The facility could be used for ag conventions and exhibits but there is a concern that the floor is not adequate,” said Heisey.

The possibility of attracting a new bowling alley and bringing an artistic element to downtown were also proposed by those at the meeting. Downtown businesses believe such attractions would bring visitors to the Main Avenue. Heisey said that Gov. Doug Burgum has started a Main Street program to revitalize North Dakota’s downtown streets, and she will gather additional information on it. This initiative may help with grants or other funding.

Other meeting participants discussed uncoordinated hours of operation for downtown businesses during the holidays and entertainment options for young people.

The next meeting will be Tuesday, December 12, from 7-8 p.m. at the Rugby Armory Classroom. The public is encouraged to attend and contribute their ideas and discuss with others.

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