The devastating Souris River flood of 2011 wiped out much of what was in Minot's Oak Park, including the annual Christmas in the Park light display organized by the Minot Sertoma Club.
Christmas in the Park returns this year, opening today. But along the way, there has been much hard work, volunteer efforts and cooperation to make the annual light display's return possible.
With all the flood damage done to Oak Park and the electrical system needed to provide energy to more than 50 light displays, holding th event in 2011 was simply out of the question. There were more so many things to put back together in Minot.
But with much-appreciated help from a wide variety of sources, the Sertoma Club is back in business this year. The Minot Park District and students from the Quentin N.?Burdick Job Corps Center have contributed greatly to the light display's return. In addition, this past summer employees of electric cooperatives from all around North Dakota came together in Oak Park and repaired or replaced the electrical pillars necessary to power the Christmas displays. Without that contribution of labor, the event might not be up and running this year.
But the Christmas light show is back for another year, and is open from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m., beginning the day after Thanksgiving and ending on?New Year's Eve. It's a major fundraiser for the club, and all proceeds make their way back into the community through club contributions to a variety of projects, with a focus on speech and hearing disorders and youth-related projects.
Welcome back, Christmas in the Park. We're glad the lights are on again.