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Can you believe, we're on the eve of construction?

With the official groundbreaking for the Highway 10 Construction Project just a couple of weeks away, the Minnesota Department of Transportation, Detroit Lakes Chamber of Commerce, and local Kiwanis and Rotary clubs are hosting a community "Countdown to Construction" presentation Thursday at the DL Holiday Inn.

Scheduled to begin at noon, the hour-long presentation will focus on how the project is expected to affect the community, and what it will mean for local business. MnDOT representatives will be providing information on staging, timelines and traffic impacts for the project.

This presentation is considered to be the official "kickoff" for the construction project, which is expected to take more than two years to complete.

To help keep commerce flowing through Detroit Lakes as smoothly as possible during the construction season, the Detroit Lakes Regional Chamber of Commerce has established a "Catch the Wave" Task Force.

Its main purpose, according to task force chair Jo Johnson, is "to show visitors and residents we're all in this together."

There will be regular updates given throughout the construction season on which roads are closed, where the alternate routes are, etc. In addition to newspaper and radio updates, the Chamber will also have a hotline set up to answer questions, Johnson noted.

"I like to think of this as cosmetic surgery -- it takes a little pain to get there... but the end result will be great," she added.

The official groundbreaking for the Highway 10 Reconstruction Project is scheduled for Thursday, April 19, from 4-5:30 p.m. It will be held in the open area between Central Market and the former Hardees restaurant site, and is expected to include a performance by the Lakes Area Community Band as well as the official groundbreaking ceremony. Several local, state and federal government dignitaries are expected to be in attendance, Johnson added.

For more information, please contact the Detroit Lakes Regional Chamber of Commerce at 847-9202 or 800-542-3992 (toll free), or go to the Chamber's online Web site at

Vicki Gerdes

Staff writer at Detroit Lakes Newspapers for the past 16 years, currently editor of the entertainment and community pages as well as covering city council and the Lake Park-Audubon School Board. Living in DL with my cat, Smokey.

(218) 844-1454