By Jennifer Gallus
As part of a beautification project for the City of Howard Lake and its upcoming Good Neighbor Days celebration, the Howard Lake Business Association is hosting a flower basket contest for local business owners.
The city turns 130 years old this year, which is another reason the city and the business association want to make this year’s Good Neighbor Days even more special.
Although the contest is sponsored by the business association, the city purchased the flower baskets. Baskets are available for free to city businesses. A limited number are available and now through Friday, May 30 is the time to pick up baskets.
Several businesses have picked up baskets as of last week.
Business owners will fill out a registration form upon picking up their baskets, which also details the contest rules.
The flower baskets are to be planted by business owners and nurtured at home or at the business until the week of Good Neighbor Days, which is Thursday through Sunday, June 19-22.
Basket growers are asked to schedule a time to drop off the basket Tuesday or Wednesday, June 17 or 18 at city hall and may request a preferred placement location.
The baskets will be hung on light poles along Highway 12, and if there are enough, along Eighth Street, as well.
Banners that will identify who made the arrangement will also be hung on the light pole along with the basket, said Howard Lake Business Association President Duane Burkstrand.
“We’ll try to place them as close to their business as possible,” said Howard Lake City Administrator Kelly Hinnenkamp. “Once everyone registers, then we’ll be able to tell which pole each one will be placed on.”
Judging will be done during Good Neighbor Days by someone from outside the community; and the winners will be announced at some time during the celebration, Burkstrand explained.
First, second, and third place winners will receive Howard Lake Bucks. A total of $100 Howard Lake Bucks is available and will be divided up amongst the winners.
Flower baskets will then remain hanging throughout town for the remainder of the summer and the city will take care of them.