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Turning an eyesore into a scenic gem

By Staff | Jun 11, 2009

Although they remain a work in progress, the grounds between the Northern Lights Tower-Interpretive Center and Prairie Village Museum in Rugby are beginning to take shape.

Most recently, species of native grasses were planted by the project landscaper, and flower beds are adding color to an area that once was an eyesore.

At one point weeds and brown grass greeted visitors as they turned off the frontage road on U.S. 2 to check out the tower and head toward the museum entrance.

However, members of the Northern Lights Tower and Interpretive Center committee three years ago had a vision for improving the grounds, and with the support of the Geographical Center Historical Society, they went to work.

Plans were developed, including a sidewalk leading to the two tourist sites as well as installing a sprinkler system to keep the area green and also the planting of trees, shrubs and flower beds on the property.

The committee applied for. and was successful in receiving. a sizable forestry grant to cover a large share of the costs of landscaping the grounds. They were also successful in acquiring other funds to move the project along.

The committee also had a great idea calling on residents and organizations to help participate in the beautification of the flower beds. So far, many have stepped up to adopt a flower bed, and they should also be commended for their civic pride.

The project’s objective is two-fold:

One, to develop an attractive greenway around these two tourist sites.

And two, to increase the number of visitors stopping at the tower and museum.

The committee is well on its way to achieving both.

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