Art On The Prairie

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A popular attraction in northern KELOLAND is now complete. 

Earlier this summer we introduced you to Guido Van Helten, an Australian artist painting this mural on a grain elevator in Faulkton. 

It’s easy to see why Faulkton is called the Carousel City. 

The colorful and musical attraction is a town treasure. 

But you could also call Faulkton the Mural City.  

“When you’re driving into town and you’re two, three miles out and you start seeing this it gets more impressive the closer you get,” Woody Harwood said. 

Woody Harwood is from Union Center. 

While traveling through the area on business, he made a stop in Faulkton to admire the art. 

“I’ve traveled the upper Midwest and seen a lot of different artwork…spillways, side of buildings, whatever. I’ve never seen anyone paint a grain elevator,” ‘Woody’ Harwood said. 

Gerald Dinger and his wife drove from Britton just to get a glimpse. 

Kelli Volk: Was it worth the trip?

Dinger: Oh, yes. And then some. 

Not only is the mural bringing people into town, but it’s driving those visitors to local businesses. 

Quilter’s Corner owner Lori Holt can see the mural from her store.

And she can also see an uptick in customers. 

“It’s had a trickle down effect for us I guess, and all the little local businesses in town,” Quilter’s Corner Owner Lori Holt said. 

She estimates an extra 20-30 people are visiting her store each week. 

“We’ve even had them from Minnesota, Nebraska. They’re coming from all over,” Holt said. 

And it all helps the local economy, according to the town’s mayor. 

“Every time someone fills a tank of gas or things of that nature while they’re passing though town, those are things that directly will benefit the City of Faulkton,” Mayor Slade Roseland said. 

“Just getting people into the community to spend money. It’s been a big help,” Faulkton Area Economic Development Board Member Brandon Spanier said. 

Brandon Spanier and Kelly Melius are both on the Faulkton Area Economic Development Board. 

“I can definitely see where it’s going to help our tax base. I think it’s going to help raise revenue and stuff like that. And it may be a little bit of awareness for our town, too, maybe attract more people,” Faulkton Area Economic Development Board Member Kelly Melius said. 

While this eye-catching elevator is the talk of the town right now, it’s a piece of a bigger picture. 

“We want to be known as the little town with a lot of art,” Faulkton Area Arts Council Member Linda Bartholomew said. 

Linda Bartholomew with the Faulkton Area Arts Council says more murals are planned. 

“I think it kind of reflects the spirit of the people. It also is the good part of life as far as I’m concerned,” Bartholomew said. 

But for now, Harwood is still taking in the towering painting in front of him. 

“I hope that mural’s there for a long, long time. It’s just beautiful,” Harwood said. 

And it’s a part of a tradition the community hopes will go ’round and ’round. 

While, the mural is gaining a lot of attention, you may be surprised to find out there are several other murals in the town of Faulkton. 

There is one inside the carousel and two on the sides of local buildings.

“We’re just this little gem out here in the prairie and we’re just kind of this hidden art treasure and this hidden history treasure out here,” Faulk County Historical Society President Jody Moritz said. 

You’ll also find a pair of old murals in the courthouse and one outside of town. 

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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