Only in my hometown would decorative street lamps being taken down become a hot button issue.
Last week in Long Prairie decorative street lamps that lined Central Avenue had to be taken down. The lights have been in place for over 10 years, but were starting to break and corrode. In addition the company that produced the original lights is no longer in business.
When posted on the Long Prairie Area Chamber of Commerce Facebook page, people came out of the woodwork voicing their opinions on the matter. Long Prairie Mayor Jodi Dixon joined the conversation by posting this to her own Facebook page:
To the citizens of Long Prairie:
I was informed that many members of the city are upset that the decorative lights are being removed on Central Avenue.
I understand your concern regarding this. Unfortunately, they had to be removed.
The bases were all corroded and they were falling down on their own, or with little assistance of community members. They were a huge hazard to have around.
The city looked into fixing them by replacing parts. However, the company that made them is now defunct.
We are making progress on fixing Central Ave. To continue progress, changes need to be done. Safety for all is our main concern.
Next year new light poles will be put in. Not sure of the style yet. Cost and candlepower will both be taken into consideration.
No one likes change but, this change was a necessity.
Thank you for your understanding in this matter.
So if you were wondering what's happening in Small Town USA, you're now caught up. I personally look forward to seeing what new lighting they put onto Central Avenue. Will it be modern, classic, rustic? Everything needs a little refresh now and then.