Reading Community Center site gets a spruce up

Mortenson Construction funds improvements.

Shingling the shelter
Volunteers from Mortenson Construction and residents of Reading work together Thursday evening, Aug. 25, 2022, to reshingle the park shelter at the Reading Community Center site.
Julie Buntjer / The Globe
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READING — Mortenson Construction has about another month’s worth of work as it repowers the 134 wind turbines that comprise the Nobles Wind Farm near Reading and Wilmont.

Their time in Nobles County has brought with it lots of traffic and a boost to the local economy with hotel stays, dining out, gas and groceries. For the community of Reading this week, it also meant some much-needed funds and help to make improvements to the Reading Community Center site.

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The property, which includes a former school building, park shelter, playground equipment, horseshoe pits and sand volleyball courts, is maintained by the Reading Community Center and is dependent on fundraising to pay for improvements.

For the past several years, community residents have wanted to replace the shingles on the shelter and give the horseshoe pit backboards and wooden playground structure a fresh coat of stain.

Adding a new coat
Timothy Allen of Mortenson Construction adds a new coat of stain to the playground equipment at the Reading Community Center. Horseshoe pit backboards, seen in the background, were restained earlier this week by the volunteers.
Julie Buntjer / The Globe

When Mortenson Construction reached out and asked if there was anything they could do for the community while they were in town, it was the first idea that came to mind.


“They’d wanted to reroof the shelter for a while and just didn’t have the funds,” said Timothy Allen, Mortenson Construction’s assistant project manager for the Nobles Wind project. “We were bringing a lot of traffic and craziness to the area and we wanted to do something for the community.”

Between Tuesday and Thursday evenings this week, Mortenson employees showed up after hours to spruce up the site. One night included seven crew members, and another there were 12 that showed up, Allen said, noting that they had members of the crane crew, civil engineers and office personnel that came to help.

Not only that, but several people from the community of Reading came to help as well.

Mortenson Construction paid for the nearly $2,500 in supplies, which included the shingles and stain. The improvements were completed Thursday evening.

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Julie Buntjer became editor of The Globe in July 2021, after working as a beat reporter at the Worthington newspaper since December 2003. She has a bachelor's degree in agriculture journalism from South Dakota State University.
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