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Upper Midwest Country School Conference
Starts: October 6, 2017
Ends:  October 7, 2017

Upper Midwest Country School Conference Scheduled for Sheldon, Iowa Oct. 6 and 7, 2017

A multi-state conference focusing on preservation of country schools will be held in Sheldon, Iowa on Friday and Saturday, Oct. 6 and 7, 2017.  The conference will open with registration at 8:30-9:00 A.M. on the Northwest Iowa Community College campus at 603 West Park St. Sheldon, Iowa on Highway 18. 

Speakers will discuss various aspects of country school ranging from building preservation, interpretative programming, producing a country history of one-room schools and marking locations of one-room schools.

Friday afternoon the conference will shift to the Prairie Arts Historical Park at 1423 Park St. in Sheldon, Iowa.  (Next to Shopko on Highway 18).  This is where President of the Prairie Arts Council, Harold Tuttle has located four country school buildings that are used in different ways.  This is the only place where four schools of different architecture can be viewed.   Docents will give the group a guided tour of each school.  The Park started in 1977and continues to improve and meet the areas art, history, and education goals.

Friday evening a program will be held at the Sheldon Prairie Queen Museum at 319 10th St. Sheldon in downtown Sheldon.  This is a former Carnegie library that has been converted to a museum featuring a variety of historical exhibits and displays. 

Sheldon sponsors include the Ladies of the Lake Daughters of the American Revolution Spirit Lake Chapter serving Northwest Iowa and the Okoboji Queen Questers of Okoboji, Iowa.  These groups will assist with registration, morning coffee, afternoon coffee and serving a catered lunch. 

Saturday participants will be able to visit another town museum in Marcus and the historic Lily of the Valley School which is used as a living history museum in Cherokee.  A special school exhibit will be displayed at the Cherokee Sanford Museum and Planetarium.   Lunch will be served at the Grand Meadows Heritage Center near Washta.  That center includes two one-room schools, a K-12 consolidated school that features museums, exhibits and displays in the former classrooms as well as a building used as a bordering house for area rural teachers. 

A copy of the promotional brochure with the agenda and registration details will be available in February.  To obtain a copy contact Bill Sherman at

For additional information contact Colleen Lemkuil at  Honorary Regent of the Ladies of the Lake Daughters of the American Revolution Spirit Lake, Iowa or call 515-229-4619 for more information. 

Attached is a picture of the Baker Township School that is under renovation.  The other 3 schools are complete and the two museums and art gallery are open for you to visit.  Call Karin Vandenberg or Hal Tuttle to set up an appointment.  Call 712—324-4190; 712-348-0361; or, 712-324-3371 or email Hal at  Additional funding to finish the school by Oct. 6 is needed. Would you want to assist send funds to Prairie Arts Council, P.O. Box 61, Sheldon, Iowa?  The Prairie Arts Council is a 501C 3 status and all monetary gifts are eligible for a tax deduction.  Let us showcase Northwest Iowa to the Midwest and assist us to finish the renovation by Oct. 6, 2017   Volunteer assistance is also appreciated.

For more questions contact Grant publicity chair Colleen Lemkuil at 515-229-4619. Thank you for your printing this in your newspapers.   Mark your 2017 calendar and gets this date reserved for you to attend. Articles to follow monthly.  This is a big event. 

Grant Document - Please Donate
Brochure & Registration Form