WINIFRED — With only a couple hundred people in Winifred in Fergus County, there’s not a lot that goes on in such a small town. There’s a big construction project in the works that has everyone excited, though.
It may just look like a bunch of metal in the middle of nowhere right now, but Winifred Public Schools is about to become a lot bigger than people would expect and the project is full steam ahead.
Thanks to a big donation from Winifred native Norm Asbjornson, Winifred schools is expanding its opportunities for students and adding a lot more classes in the future. They have plans to add a greenhouse, a welding shop, more trades classes, and many other options as well.
School officials say the whole community is really excited for what they think this can become and want students to enjoy it as well. Construction workers estimate they are about 40% done with construction and agree with people in Winifred that this is a big deal and is going to be more innovative for students.
Construction manager Kris Koessl says it has been a smooth process since breaking ground and is pleased with how it is all coming together.
“Everything has been really outstanding. We got a great team from the construction team to the design team and we’re up working really well together and so honestly, going about as smooth as you could expect being in this remote location and the amount of work that’s being completed on a monthly basis is really impressive,” Koessl said.
Not only is the school getting an upgrade, but the football field got one as well, which is now an all-red turf, the only one of its kind in 6-man football. Some people were unsure of how it’d work given the field is in the middle of the construction zone, but the Outlaws were as proud as ever to show off their new field to their fans. They lost a nail biter to Broadview-Lavina in their debut game on the turf 19-16 but they gave Winifred a good game, nonetheless.
Superintendent Chad Fordyce said the team was excited all week to get their first game in.
“They’ve been really excited. They got to practice on it Tuesday this week and the comments I heard from the kids were ‘Aw, man, this is phenomenal, it’s great.’ It’s bouncy so they feel like they’re running faster. You know watching our junior high play just a little bit ago they just seemed to have a little more pep in their step and real anxious to get out there,” Fordyce said.
Outside of a few supply chain issues, there haven’t been any setbacks in construction and they expect it to be completed in fall of 2022.