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LETTER: North Dakota soon will celebrate 125 years

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As North Dakotans, we’ve been blessed in many ways, and each anniversary of statehood has served as a wonderful reminder of our culture, of our history and of what we’ve accomplished. This year is especially significant as we celebrate our biggest birthday yet — 125 years.

To mark this historic milestone, we have planned two signature events – one event will be held on our actual statehood anniversary, Nov. 2, and the other will be held Aug. 16 on the Capitol grounds in Bismarck.

This summertime event is free of charge and will showcase the best of North Dakota with world-class, home-grown entertainment, food, fine arts and games. Multiple stages will showcase acts including Tigirlily, The Blenders, Chuck Suchy, The Burning Hills Singers, Mitch Malloy, Robby Vee, Jessie Veeder, the North Dakota National Guard 188th Quintet, KittyKo, Penny and Pals, Keith Bear, Kevin Locke, Randi Perkins, Greg Hager, and Dakota Air, a variety show featuring talent and culture from across the state. Festivities kick off at 11 a.m. and continue into the evening. It will be a full day of exciting entertainment for the entire family.

“Under the Dakota Sky: An Exhibition Celebrating 125 Years of Statehood” will also be featured that weekend at the North Dakota Heritage Center on the east side of the Capitol grounds.

North Dakota is the land of legends, whether you are talking about the magnificent dinosaurs and sea life that inhabited the area millions of years ago, the mighty buffalo that have roamed the Plains for centuries or the legendary figures who made history here.

North Dakota’s strongest asset has always been our people. From the Northern Great Plains Indians and the early settlers who established our statehood, to the generations of people that solidified our reputation for hard work and integrity, North Dakotans are known throughout our nation as the best of the best.

Our position as the fastest growing state with the strongest economy was not attained by accident. Now is the time to reflect proudly on where we have been and continue the extraordinary work of writing North Dakota’s next great chapter.

Whether you’ve been a North Dakotan all your life or have only just joined us, we hope to see you in Bismarck on Aug. 16. Let’s celebrate North Dakota.

Drew Wrigley

Wrigley is lieutenant governor of North Dakota.

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