Archived Story

Focus on survival of RTC, not its destruction [UPDATED]

Published 10:14am Monday, September 17, 2012 Updated 12:14pm Monday, September 17, 2012

I was surprised and honored to be recognized as the 6,000th visitor on the Sept. 7, Kirkbride tour led by Maxine and Gene Schmidt.

My purpose in writing you is to offer heartfelt encouragement for all of you to pledge to hold off on the apparently imminent destruction of such a grand and unique building.

The size and condition of the property are absolutely breathtaking. Both my husband and I feel the destruction of Kirkbride would be devastating — to Fergus Falls and to the world, and that those who would make the decision for its demolition would regret it mightily.

It appears you have a veritable jewel in your midst — a 124-year-old building that was built to last 400 — and it is our hope you will fight for a way to preserve it for future generations.

Please take the idea of destruction off the table and concentrate only on the survival of Kirkbride — a fascinating building with an incomparable history.

The Schmidts should be honored as amazing ambassadors for both the Kirkbride and Fergus Falls. You are very fortunate to have such a dedicated and hard-working couple who have dared to invest their time and talent on such a tremendous challenge and to continue to dream big.


Mary Anne Phelps

and Tony Rocha

Austin, Texas


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