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Grand Forks leaders observe 20th anniversary of flood

Homes in the Lincoln Drive area of Grand Forks were evacuated hours before the dikes gave way April 18, 1997, inundating them with at least 8 feet of water on the main floor. (Grand Forks Herald/Jackie Lorentz)

Grand Forks city leaders issued a resolution to mark the 20th anniversary of the Flood of 1997 on Wednesday, joining the Legislature and Gov. Doug Burgum in remembering the devastating effects of the floodwaters that topped dikes that spring.

The resolution, signed by Mayor Mike Brown and City Council President Dana Sande, states that the flood "changed our community not just physically, but psychologically and emotionally" and thanks local and federal leaders who helped the community recover.

"Now, therefore, the Mayor and Grand Forks City Council do hereby resolve to mark the 20th anniversary of the 1997 Flood with an acknowledgement of the painful memories, the uplifting acts of generosity, the tireless work along the road to recovery, and the unrelenting determination of Grand Forks residents in rebuilding a community stronger than ever," the resolution states.

Both Brown and East Grand Forks Mayor Steve Gander plan to meet at the Sorlie Bridge on Saturday to recognize the flood in an event described as a chance to connect 20 years after the disaster.