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ALEX150 exhibit to debut, Grande Parade Saturday

It looks like the people of Alexandria are ready to celebrate their Sesquicentennial!

Earlier this winter an invitation was extended to anyone who wished to nominate a person, group of people, landmark, place or anything that has helped shape this community from 1858-2008. And, the people have spoken!

On Saturday, June 7 the ALEX150 Exhibit will debut in the lobby of the Alexandria Area Arts Association on Broadway. Exhibit hours that day will be from 1 to 5 p.m. and all parade spectators, residents and out-of-town visitors are invited to come.

That same day, prepare to line the sidewalks of Broadway in time for the 2:30 Grande Parade.

The ALEX150 Committee, comprised of Douglas County Historical Society members and Douglas County Library Friends and Foundation members, have had an interesting few months sifting through the nominations. It was quickly discovered that there are obviously more than 150 examples of what has shaped Alexandria's rich community. Some nominations were self-evident and some were uniquely inspiring.

Every nomination that was sent deserved recognition and has been used for the exhibit. The nomination narratives will be available to read at the exhibit, displayed in book form. The nominator for each submission will be recognized.

Every nomination in the exhibit has had a significant impact on the development of Alexandria as a community in the last 150 years. Everyone who lives, works and plays in this community is lucky to have such rich history. We have so much to celebrate!

Nominations ranged from people like "Cap" Paciotti, Dale Serum, Vernon Maack, Harland and Jerry, and Larry Shellito; to places like Osterberg's Café, Travelers Inn and the Darling Dude Ranch.

Groups like the Alexandria National Guard Redbulls, Jefferson High School Carolers and League of Women Voters were submitted.

Visionary people involved in things like the Alexandria Lakes Area Sanitary District are being honored.

There were many interesting people, places and things nominated. You don't want to miss the opportunity to see this exhibit; hopefully, it will inspire memories for everyone.

The Grande Parade is hosted by the Alexandria Fire Department, which is also celebrating a milestone of 125 years.

The parade begins at 2:30 p.m. on Saturday, June 7. The route begins on 12th Avenue and will head north to 5th Avenue, turning west toward the fairgrounds. According to Bill Thoennes, organizer, there are more than 100 units registered, not counting all the visiting Minnesota fire departments and trucks that will be in town for the Minnesota State Fire Department Association Convention through the weekend!

Alexandria Sesquicentennial Dates to Remember:

Saturday, June 7

Grande Parade 2:30

ALEX150 Exhibit 1 - 5 p.m.

June 21, 22, 27 and 28

Good Deeds and Great Men

Alexandria Area Arts Association

June 22

Church Service at Alexandria City Park

Hosted by First Lutheran Church

11 a.m.

June 24

Time Capsule Day on the Courthouse Lawn

Sponsored by the Douglas County Historical Society

Noon - Dusk

"Unearthing" Ceremony at 5:30

Watch the Echo Press for details on events. Brochures with a complete list of activities are available at Alexandria businesses, the Douglas County Historical Society, Runestone Museum and Alexandria Area Arts Association.