ST. PAUL – After four years and around $310 million spent restoring the state Capitol, Rep. Bud Nornes, R-Fergus Falls, urges local citizens to take in this weekend’s grand re-opening festivities in St. Paul.
The Capitol will host a wide range of festivities this Friday through Sunday to officially celebrate the grand re-opening of the 112-year-old St. Paul building as a massive refurbishing is completed.
A ribbon-cutting ceremony will kick things off at 9 a.m. Friday. Events will start early in the morning last well into the night all three days. There are offerings planned for citizens of all ages, including everything from a Kids Zone to cocktails on the Capitol’s newly reopened balcony. Tours will be available and a number of musical performances are scheduled. The Capitol chandelier will be raised each day at 8 p.m. and a fireworks show will take place at 9:30 p.m. Saturday.
Nornes said organizers anticipate 100,000 people could attend the weekend festivities.
“The work that has been done on our Capitol is nothing short of amazing,” Nornes said. “It was pretty sad to see how worn out the building had become, but the refurbishing has brought the building back to all its glory and now should stand proud for another hundred years or more. Everything from the chandelier to the paintings on the wall shine brighter and it is interesting to see the public spaces that have been reclaimed after having been off limits for years.”
The restoration project itself included repairing a deteriorating marble exterior, addressing life safety concerns, increasing access for the disabled, updating mechanical systems and generally making the building more user-friendly to the public.
A complete itinerary and more regarding the August weekend of grand opening events is available at www.mn.gov/mymncapitol.