To increase opportunities for a healthy life for all who live, work and play in the Wadena area
~ By assisting in the continued preservation and betterment of the Wadena area
~ By supplementing the effort of government in this pursuit
Cultural Center of New York Mills
Wadena County Historical Society
Wadena Area Chamber of Commerce
Mayor George Deiss
City of Wadena & Wadena Concert Assn.
Five Wings Arts Council
Madhatters Community Theatre & Wadena Garden Club
Whiskey Creek Film Festival
Green Island Preserve
Wadena-Deer Creek School Board
In 2007 Partners embarked on two more major projects: the complete restoration of the historic Wadena train depot and the development of a program to strengthen heritage tourism. The Depot Visitors Center and railroad museum opened in 2008 restoring its former presence in the center of town. Built in 1915 and listed on the National of Historic Places, The Depot is a wonderful place to view historic depot photographs and artifacts. It is open seasonally free of charge to everyone. The Partners collaborates with the Wadena Area Convention & Visitors Bureau to provide area information and to serve as a starting point for various Wadena tours such as the Murals of MN and the Historic Building Walking Tour which are part of the tourism program. The Depot Visitors Center is also available for rent and can be used for wedding receptions, showers, trainings, meetings and various parties, fundraisers or celebrations.
A new program now being developed in 2010 is an interactive exhibit that shares stories told by former railroad employees and others who came and went from this depot. In Wadena's early history, people came to and left from this depot that connected Wadena to the larger world. The beautiful city park surrounding it became the center of the community life, and continues to be the site of band concerts, community dinners, the farmer's market, festivals and family picnics. It is also a great place for rail fans to do train spotting with 75-85 trains per day providing plenty of photo opportunities.
The restoration of the 1916 bandstand situated in front of The Depot is a project that was completed jointly with the City of Wadena during 2009 and 2010. The community enjoys being able to once again use the "off-limits" structure.
Projects, programs and activities taken on by Partners are strategically selected. They require partnerships locally and many on the state and federal levels. The long-term intention is to to develop Wadena and the region as a place people want to live, to expand or start-up a business or to bring a family to live.
One organization cannot do it all but if a team of committed generous community members are willing to work together the possibilities are endless. The Partners is located at The Depot.
Contributions to current projects and volunteers are always welcome.