The Otter Tail County Story Mapping Project is a 10-month pilot project by Rethos: Places Reimagined in partnership with the Otter Tail County Historical Society and Springboard for the Arts. The purpose of the project is to collect and map the stories of Otter Tail County by engaging community members through small projects led by local organizations, historians, artists, students, businesses, etc.

Otter Tail County residents are invited to participate in community story workshops on Jan. 30-31 to learn about story mapping, methods of gathering community stories and project ideas ranging from one-on-one conversations to more creative and public projects. Workshops will be held at the following locations:

• Henning Landmark Center, 10 a.m. - 12:30 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 30.

• New York Mills Cultural Center, 2 p.m. - 4:30 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 30.

• Pelican Rapids Public Library, 10 a.m. - 12:30 p.m., Friday, Jan. 31.

Following the workshops, participants will be eligible to apply for project funds ranging from $500 to $2,500 to implement a community story project between March and June 2020. Total project funds available from Rethos is $30,000. The two deadlines for project proposals are Feb. 20 and March 19. Rethos is working with three community partners, New York Mills Cultural Center, Henning Landmark Center, and the community of Pelican Rapids to host workshops and assist with project selection and story mapping.

While community story projects are in progress, Rethos will begin populating the story map. The map will be a local resource that may assist in developing economic development strategies, pathways to safeguarding heritage resources, future philanthropic investment, planning, promotion and other policy decisions.

To register for a workshop, visit Registration is free and open to the public. For registration questions contact Emily Kurash at For questions about the project, contact Sarina Otaibi at

This project was made possible in part by the people of Minnesota through a grant funded by an appropriation to the Minnesota Historical Society from the Minnesota Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.


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