Archive for March, 2007


design:SD Booth at Customer Appreciation Days


The Design South Dakota team introduced the project to many Corsica area residents at the Corsica Commercial Club’s Customer Appreciation Days last Saturday. The Commercial Club served pancakes and sausages for free to hundreds of Corsica locals, while Jim Beddow, Ward Whitwam and I talked design and charrette with the locals.

Big thanks go to our friends at the Willmar Design Center in Willmar, MN (especially Bev Daugherty) for allowing us to borrow their charrette boards to use in our display. Also thanks to TSP Architects in Sioux Falls for lending us the display background, to Bobbi Gaukel at one8ty creative for designing the logo and handouts on super short notice, and to Nathan Hinker and the Corsica Commercial Club for inviting us to participate (and giving us the idea for the booth)!

pancake-booth-bartmann-3-24-2007.jpg pancake-booth-beddow-3-24-2007.jpg

Ward Whitwam, AIA and a member of the design:SD planning team, ran into an old friend (or maybe adversary?) at the pancake feed. Ward designed the Corsica Elementary School 39 years ago. At that time, Sid Hoekstra, who still lives in Corsica, was the School Board Chair. Sid and Ward recalled the arguments they had almost 40 years ago over the price of the project.


Ward also visited with the folks in the Douglas County Hospital booth. He learned they will be celebrating the 50th anniversary of building the hospital later this year. As it turns out, Ward also designed that building half a century ago!

Thanks to the Corsica community for the warm welcome!

Joe Bartmann, The Rural Learning Center


Planning team huddles in Corsica


The design:SD planning team  spent an afternoon in Corsica on March 23. We met with the local Housing Commission and with the senior class from Corsica High School. We also further developed our plans for May 16-19. We’ll soon be releasing the event schedule.

The Corsica Commercial Club has set up a handful of committees to help coordinate the charrette (what is a charrette?), including a Food Committee and a Host Home Committee. The Food Committee will be in charge of coordinating/serving the meals and snacks/refreshments for the Design SD Team while they are in Corsica in May. The Host Home group is looking for families in the Corsica area who are willing to host a Design Team member for 3 nights. Host families will not need to feed your guest, just provide a place to sleep, shower, etc. If you’d like to help, just contact Nathan Hinker at the Avera Corsica Clinic.



Announcing the Design South Dakota Project


The event. Design South Dakota is a new way to help rural communities create a better future by design. In May, 2007, a team of design and community development professionals will spend four intense days (called a design “charrette”) working with the people in the Corsica region to gather and illustrate local ideas. The event will help to build a shared vision for the future, and to demonstrate ways to turn those ideas into reality in the Corsica regional community.

Corsica will become the first ever Design South Dakota community. The event will be talked about all over the state, as we help celebrate 150 years of the American Institute of Architects, and Corsica’s history and future by design.

The team. 20-30 professionals from all walks of design and community development will come to Corsica to work on the design:SD team. These volunteers from all over our state care about rural places and the future of our state’s small communities. They will work long and hard together for four days to help the people of Corsica think about and design the future.

And you. The focus of the four-day event will be ideas from local people. The design:SD team will listen to and interact frequently with local folks during the “charrette.” They will build and illustrate ideas as they go, and make changes along the way based on local input. The event will help the Corsica region to dream about the future, and recognize how important design is to that future. A charrette can bring the people of the region together and energize them toward a shared vision–a better way to see their community.

design:SD is sponsored by AIA South Dakota and The Rural Learning Center, and locally by Planning Development District III and the Corsica Commercial Club.

The organizers of the design:SD project are forever grateful to the members of the Minnesota Design Team for their support and encouragement.