Hundreds show up for 'flash mob' hug at Fergus Falls landmarkHundreds showed up to what used to be the State Hospital on a hot Saturday morning. The Flash Mob Hug took place at the Regional Treatment Center/Kirkbride Complex in Fergus Falls.
Hundreds showed up to what used to be the State Hospital on a hot Saturday morning. The Flash Mob Hug took place at the Regional Treatment Center/Kirkbride Complex in Fergus Falls.
At 11 a.m. sharp, more than 430 people held hands and wrapped the 124-year-old building in an attempt at a world record-setting hug. Huggers came to show support for redevelopment and reuse of this massive complex.
The event was started by members from the Friends of the Kirkbride who hope to save the building from what seems to be imminent loss, as the city of Fergus Falls plans to seek bids for demolition in September. The city has received an extension on $7 million dollars of Minnesota taxpayer money that was earmarked in 2002 for either renovation and marketing or demolition of the Kirkbride.
The Regional Treatment Center/Kirkbride building is currently listed in the National Register of Historic Buildings and was on the Preservation Alliance of Minnesota’s 10 Most Endangered Historic Places list in 2011.
Confirmation for the biggest building hug will take at least six to eight weeks from Guinness World Records, as there is no current record for hugging a building. A video of the event will be released shortly on You Tube and on the "Friends of the Kirkbride" Facebook page.