We've seen it before, Declining enrollment in rural KELOLAND communities forces school districts to consolidate and leave their buildings abandoned. Last fall Cresbard School closed its doors for good, giving the community of 200 people little hope of a future. But that was when a comic book company stepped into the picture and bought the school for a home and business.
Crosby said, "It's sad that so many schools are closing down, but I'm really happy that we found this one because it's beautiful here, the people are so nice and we really love it here."
Teri Crosby and her son brought their business from California to South Dakota in hopes of expanding a company on the rise. Crosby owns Keenspot Comics which publishes cartoonists works in books and over the internet.
Crosby said, "It's gigantic and the web has made it so that anyone can get on there and do what they want to do where newspapers are so limited."
Crosby is already talking about expanding her business at old Cresbard High School taking one of the old classrooms and making it a studio which will change the book of comics into animated cartoons. Now the building and the town have room for potential growth.
Mayor Kretschmer said, "So many times these small towns, that these schools when they close that's the end and you just don't get a second chance."
Now the community believes it can have a prosperous future thanks to a company that has Cresbard in its future.
Crosby said, "We do silk screening that we out source, and we make toys that we out source, we'd like to produce all of them here which would produce a lot more jobs and be much more convenient."
The community could get back some of the school. The town is working with Keenspot to open a library in part of the building and save the gym for community events. Long range plans include transforming the old football field into a drive-in movie theater.
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