Water Deposit Increase Proposed by Council

DellRapidsTowerThe Dell Rapids City Council passed the first reading of Ordinance 825, Water Utility Deposit Increase, at their last regular meeting held on Monday, November 16th.  The ordinance proposed will raise the deposit required for water utility from $50.00 to $125.00 for renters.

City Administrator Justin Weiland said, “The council had discussion at the previous meeting regarding this issue, and it was the vocal consensus that the council was to raise it to that rate.  This was spurred when council member (Lee) Burggraff brought up the issue between owners of the property and their renters, and leaving them with past due water bills.”

The $50.00 deposit rate has been in place since 1999.  If the council passes the second reading of the ordinance, the new rate will go into effect on January 4th, 2016.

Christmas at the Dells Coming to Town

2015DRChamberChristmasDellsThe Dell Rapids Chamber of Commerce’s Annual Christmas at the Dells celebration is just around the corner.  This year’s celebration will take place the first weekend of December.

Events start at 9:00 a.m. on Saturday, December 5th at the Dells Museum.  Dells Bowl will have half-priced bowling starting at 1:00 p.m.  River Community Church will be hosting a children’s craft event from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.  There will be sleigh/hayrides from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m.  The American Legion will be having a soup supper from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m.  The Christmas Tree Lighting and the Parade of Lights will start at 6:30 p.m.

Events continue on Sunday starting at 12:00 p.m. at the Dells Museum that will run all day long.  The Festival of Christmas Auction will start at 7:00 p.m.

Along with a weekend full of events, the Dell Rapids Chamber of Commerce will be having a gingerbread house contest and coloring contest.  There will also be some new additions to the Christmas at the Dells celebration that will continue past the weekend through the month of December.

Dell Rapids Chamber of Commerce Treasurer Amber Larson says, “We are excited to add some new activities to our annual Christmas at the Dells celebration this year. The new additions include a ‘Shop Our Town Punch Card’, Holiday Lighting contest, children’s coloring contest, and a children’s craft event at RCC.”

The “Shop Our Town Punch Card”  activity invites locals to visit many wonderful businesses in Dell Rapids. Shoppers are to collect 10 punches on the card and return it to Video Plus by December 17th to be entered into a drawing for a new tablet. The punch cards can be found at Video Plus.

For residents that want to participate in the Holiday Lighting contest, they are asked to decorate their homes and contact the chamber by Monday, December 21st, by phone (428-4167), email (drchamberofcommerce@gmail.com), or mail (PO Box 81) with their names and address to be entered into the contest.  Dell Rapids Chamber of Commerce board members will drive around Dell Rapids on the evening of Tuesday, December 22nd to pick out the winners.  Winners will receive some fun prizes from the chamber.

Larson also says, “We enjoy planning this annual event and hope to reach out to the community to remind them of the great town we are proud to call home.”

More details about the event can be found on the Dell Rapids Chamber of Commerce website www.dellrapids.org.

Gas Prices Drop Below $2.00

2015GasPriceGas prices have fallen to below $2.00 a gallon in the area for the second time in the past year.  Currently in Dell Rapids, gas prices are $1.879 for a gallon of gas.  The last time gas prices were under $2.00 was December 19th, 2014, and the prices remained that low for only a short period of time.

Prices have steadily dropped throughout the past month.   According to GasBuddy.com, the Sioux Falls area had an average price of $2.31 per gallon a month ago.  The price was $2.05 a week ago.  Currently the average price for a gallon of gas in the Sioux Falls area is $1.85.  The current average is almost a dollar less than a year ago.   At this time last year, the average price was $2.67.

The average price for the state of South Dakota is currently $2.12.  The national average is $2.11 according to GasBuddy.com

Midwest Fresh Logistics Holds Ground-Breaking Ceremonies

Midwest Fresh Logistics held a ground-breaking ceremony in Dell Rapids at the Council Chambers on Wednesday, November 11th.  Midwest Fresh Logistics President Ben Bricko, Dell Rapids Mayor Scott Fiegen, Dell Rapids Economic Development Corporation President Doug Hainje, Minnehaha County Commissioner Cindy Heiberger, and South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard spoke during the ceremony.

Midwest Fresh Logistics has already begun dirt work on their 20,000 square-foot facility that will cost around $2.5 million.  Bricko mentioned they hope to begin foundation work within the next week or two.  Plans are to have the facility operational somewhere between the end of March to the middle of April in 2016.

Bricko said, “The vision of the company is to improve the delivery of fresh produce to the upper Midwest region.  The primary  MidwestFreshLogisticsFiegenPark_4function of the employees of the facility is going to be to unload the trucks, re-sort the product according to the region that it’s going to end up at, and put it back on the truck for final delivery. The majority of the jobs initially will be material handling, supervisors for material handling, and of course an operations manager for the facility.  Initial thought is eight to 10 employees.”

MidwestFreshLogisticsFiegenPark_3Heiberger mentioned, “How wonderful for you to pick Minnehaha County to put your company in and join us in a great team.  We have wonderful people here in Minnehaha County.  We are happy to have you as part of our county, obviously, because our county runs on property taxes.  Any new economic growth in the county is a plus for all the residents of Minnehaha County.”

Not only was the ground-breaking ceremony to celebrate Midwest Fresh Logistics, but the ceremony also celebrated the establishment of the new industrial Fiegen Development Park within the city limits of Dell Rapids.

“This will be officially our first industrial park within the city limits of Dell Rapids.  I greatly appreciate everybody’s efforts,” noted MidwestFreshLogisticsFiegenPark_1Fiegen.

Heiberger also said, “Congratulations to Dell Rapids for putting together the Fiegen Development out there. It’s wonderful that you guys got a park going on in your own town.  Thank you for what you’ve done.”

The city of Dell Rapids will be constructing a $1.3 million road from highway 115 to the new development park.  The Governor’s Office of Economic Development and South Dakota Department of Transportation will provide grant assistance.

MidwestFreshLogisticsFiegenPark_5Governer Daugaard said, “It’s really a double-celebration. We’re here of course to celebrate Ben and his company, Midwest Fresh Logistics, and his decision to come to Dell Rapids.  That’s a great thing for the property tax-base for the city.  It’s a great thing for those who are looking for jobs closer to home that might be commuting to Sioux Falls now or elsewhere and find good jobs right here in the community.  That’s a good thing to celebrate in itself. But what’s great about it is it comes at a time when it provides an opportunity to open up a development park in the city.”

Every speaker thanked the Fiegen family for the land that is being used for the development park.   MidwestFreshLogisticsFiegenPark_2

“I would like to thank the Fiegen family.  The development corporation was able to purchase some land from them.  Without that this project would never have taken place,” said Hainje.


From L to R: City Administrator Justin Weiland, Midwest Fresh Logistics President Ben Bricko, Minnehaha County Commissioner Cindy Heiberger, Dell Rapids Economic Development Corporation President Doug Hainje, South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard, Dell Rapids Mayor Scott Fiegen


Dell Rapids Students Celebrate Veteran’s Day

Students from Dell Rapids Public and Dell Rapids St Mary schools spent the day celebrating Veteran’s Day.

Dell Rapids Middle and High School held their program at 9:00 a.m. at the high school gym.  Veteran’s Day poems were read by 5th grade students Sam Schmitt, Zach Heinemann, and Callista Xavier.  The Dell Rapids High School band and choir performed during the ceremony, and Morgan Kistler presented a service project to the veterans.

The Dell Rapids St Mary program was held at 10:00 a.m. at the Dell Rapids St Mary High 2015VeteransDay_1School gym.  The St Mary program included a slide show of all the relatives of St  Mary students with their branch of service and where they served.

The Dell Rapids Elementary School program was held at 1:45 p.m. at the elementary 2015VeteransDay_2school gym.  All the elementary students participated by singing songs throughout the program.

Dell Rapids Farmer Wins UAV in Drawing by Peterson Farms Seed

HARWOOD, N.D., Nov. 3, 2015 Peterson Farms Seed is pleased to announce that John Geraets of Dell Rapids, SD, is the winner of its DJI Phantom 3 Advanced Drone giveaway.  Geraets farms with his family in the Dell Rapids area.

John Geraets

Rob Thuringer of Peterson Farms Seed presents the drone to giveaway winner John Geraets of Dell Rapids, SD.

Rob Thuringer, Peterson Farms Seed representative for eastern South Dakota, says, “It was great to award the drone to John. He’s excited about this technology and already has ideas for putting it to good use to improve his family’s row crop operation.”

Peterson Farms Seed expanded into eastern South Dakota for the 2015 growing season to meet farmer demand.  As the largest independent seed company in the upper Midwest, the company offers its products to farmers through a network of seed dealers.  Peterson Farms Seed is heavily involved in new technologies, including UAVs, in an effort to help farmers get the most potential from every seed they plant.

Peterson Farms Seed collected entries at trade shows throughout the growing season.


Peterson Farms Seed remains an independent, family-owned company which has grown to be the largest, independent corn and soybean seed company in the upper Midwest. As an independent, the company has the freedom to select genetics and traits that best fit the needs of regional farmers rather than being tied to one breeding program and trait platform. The company’s extensive replicated testing program is well-known throughout the region. For more information, see their website at www.PetersonFarmsSeed.com.

Brita Johnson, Peterson Farms Seed

600 Pounds Lost During Revive Fitness “Game On Challenge”

ReviveFitnessGameOnChallenge1On September 20, 2014 Revive Fitness opened its doors in Dell Rapids, beginning to change lives of people in the community by promoting health and fitness through group fitness classes.  A year later Revive Fitness kicked off their 2nd year in Dell Rapids with the “Game On Challenge”.  The Game On Challenge was a 28-day program that challenged individuals on all levels; physically, mentally, spiritually, and nutritionally.  82 members of the Dell Rapids community and Revive Fitness signed up to participate.  Participants were then randomly split into teams and worked to gain their team the most points.

Contestants earned points by following healthy nutritional guidelines, daily exercise, and proper rest habits.  Additionally members had to commit to breaking a “bad” habit, starting a new “good” habit, and finally setting an overall weight loss or fitness goal.

Brittani Bollock, owner of Revive Fitness, said, “Overall health and wellness is not only just fitness or nutrition.  It is a combination of physical, emotional, spiritual and nutritional needs, that when balanced properly, allow your body to accomplish all that is was made to accomplish.  This challenge was not a diet, it was not a fad, but it has been a guideline to creating and helping people of all walks make lifestyle changes that have positively effected not only their lives but the lives of many people around them.”

Challenge participant Sara Schneider said, “The biggest thing I’ve learned during this journey is to keep going.  Just because I had a bad day or lunch, I still have to keep going.  One screw up doesn’t determine your outcome.  Just keep pushing.  The breakthrough will come!  I have also prayed a lot, and Jesus has definitely been my strength through a lot of this!”

Over the course of the 28-day Game On challenge, the 82 participants lost more than 600 pounds!  While not all participants had a weight loss goal, those that did lost an average of nearly 10 pounds over the 4 week time-frame.  In fact during this short time, one member lost over 20 pounds.  Another participant was able to come off of all blood pressure medications (with doctors guidance and approval).  Numerous participants reported that their lifestyle changes had influenced their family, friends, and coworkers, who then started eating healthier and exercising more once they saw the participants results.

“Because of the challenge, I am more conscious of what I’m eating and how much activity I’m getting daily.  It takes a lot of discipline and planning ahead to follow all the rules, but it’s paid off for me. I’ve lost 12 pounds and am definitely motivated to continue to try to make the changes into new habits.  And I know I would have never done that without the support from the Revive trainers and other Revive members,” commented Jared Hohn.

Lisa Carr added, “You will face your greatest opposition when you are closest to your biggest miracle”.

The winners of the challenge received a night out of socializing and celebrating their team’s victory.  Not only did the challenge build up individuals and deliver great results, it also helped to build up the community of Dell Rapids and inspire greater health and wellness for all.  Given the success of the first round of the challenge, nearly 90% of the participants have signed up for “round two”, which will run through the end of November.

“I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me” 1 Cor. 3:17

Dell Rapids Sees More Economic Growth in 2015

2015DREconomicGrowth_2In 2014 citizens of Dell Rapids welcomed the opening of new businesses Caseys, Family Dollar, and Revive Fitness in town, along with the re-branding of T&Cs to Local, and the move of Roemen Automotive to their new building.  Dell Rapids has had even more growth in 2015.

The Dell Rapids Carnegie Library held their dedication ceremony for the newly expanded space on May 2nd.  Ace Hardware opened their new building on July 7th and held their Grand Opening celebration August 7th-9th.  Dakota Technology Consulting, Creative Lush, Mason Jar, and Blooms on Main had ribbon cuttings this year to celebrate their businesses moving into new buildings in downtown Dell Rapids.  GoldenWest’s expansion project next to their current location downtown has begun.  Matt Beukelman purchased the former Tryon Gym and re-opened as Rapid Fitness.  Construction has also begun on a new building next to the Rocky Run Car Wash that will be home to Great Life. 2015DREconomicGrowth_1

Also announced in 2015, Midwest Fresh Logistics will be building a distribution center in the Fiegen Development Park located on the southern edge of Dell Rapids.  Ground-breaking for the new center and development park will take place in the near future.  Dairy Queen closed its doors temporarily so they could build a brand new Dairy Queen building that will be placed in its current location.  Dirt work has already begun just north of the Ace Hardware for a brand new Shopko Hometown store which is targeting a July 2016 open date.

City Administrator Justin Weiland said that along with the economic growth in Dell Rapids, the city also issued nine new home building permits throughout the year.

Dell Rapids St Mary 7-12 Principal and Activities Director Casey Michel said, “The overall growth of the town is bringing new families into our school community.”  Dell Rapids St Mary school has had new families register in their elementary and pre-school grades, and they will also have a new family coming to school after Christmas.

Grandstand Project in Process

NewGrandstandWork on the new grandstand project for Rickeman Field is currently in process.  The concrete slab under the grandstand was poured the week of October 12th, and assembly of the grandstand structure has begun and should be completed before November.  However, the press box piece of the grandstand will not be in Dell Rapids for another couple of weeks according to City Administrator Justin Weiland.  The electrical portion of the project will happen when the press box is installed.

The Dell Rapids City Council budgeted $70,000 for the project for 2015 and then approved a proposed project estimated at $72,000 on Monday, August 3rd.  The finished project included the new grandstand with mounted press box at the top, electrical work, and the new concrete pad under the grandstand.

Bacteria Found in Water Not a Health Risk

DellRapidsTowerDell Rapids drinking water recently had two test sites that tested positive for coliform bacteria for the month of October.  City Administrator Justin Weiland discussed the finding with members of the Dell Rapids City Council during their regular meeting on Monday, October 19th.  A letter was also sent out to residents explaining the findings.

The letter stated that coliform bacteria are generally not harmful themselves and that this was not an emergency.  Coliform bacteria is used more as an indicator that other, potentially harmful, bacteria may be present in the water.  When Dell Rapids received reports of coliform bacteria numbers being higher than standard for two of the test sites, the city did follow-up testing to determine if other bacteria that was of a greater concern was present in the water.  The additional testing did not find any of those bacteria.

The letter also stated that city employees immediately flushed the water lines following the positive tests.  More testing was completed after the flushing was completed.  The results from those tests came back negative for coliform.  According to the letter, all indicators point to no bacteria in the water, but the city plans to continue testing and monitoring the area that had the failed tests to be certain the bacteria is fully removed.

The area that had the failed tests was in the area of the new water main replacement project.  The new lines were tested for bacteria before the lines were connected, but it is believed that loose debris entered the pipe during the connecting of the lines causing the failed tests.

Residents are encouraged to still contact City Hall for additional information at 428-3595.