It’s been informally named the Veblen Strip Mall, and the transformation of the former school building is indicative of the positive change happening in the small community in northeastern Marshall County.
The community school is the lifeblood of a town, and when Veblen lost its high school and then its elementary several years ago, it left a void. Now that is changing.
“When a school closes it’s a tough deal for any community,” said Karie (Pallansch) Geyer, who recently returned to her home town and chairs the Veblen Community Development group. “It was almost like the town was in mourning.”
But now Geyer senses a new-found energy in Veblen, and the school once again is on the verge of becoming a center of community life.
The building now houses City Hall, with a retail business, a fitness center and a business office all set to open in the next two months. The old library will soon reopen as the Veblen Public Library, and the former school kitchen and cafeteria and gymnasium are available for rent for things like weddings, fundraisers, reunions, and anniversary celebrations.
Mayor Lorne Aadland has seen a growing enthusiasm among residents.
“There’s a lot of excitement about the project, even among some of the older people. That must mean we’re on the right track.”
Caption for above photo: A Veblen Public Library is scheduled to open in the near future in the former Veblen Elementary School building. The library is just one of a number of things that are planned for the old school building. Photo by Britton Journal