By Chad Koenen


For a town of 300 people, receiving a grant for nearly $600,000 is nothing short of a big deal. The Deer Creek City Council couldn’t hold back its excitement recently after it learned the city had been chosen for a Small Cities Development Program grant.

The total amount of money the city will receive from the State of Minnesota is for $581,430 and the city will contribute another $44,000-45,000 to make necessary repairs at the water tower, as well as the adjacent well house. 

As part of the project, Deer Creek City Clerk/Treasurer Tom Parish said the city will complete both interior and exterior work at the water tower. Among the repairs will be to realign the water tower, which he said hasn’t been done in approximately 20 years. 

The project and grant came to fruition after city representatives hosted a tour of the water tower and well house area for state officials. That tour led to the state making several recommendations for upcoming repairs and enhancements that were needed in Deer Creek.

“They gave us an idea that we needed to do some repair work on the exterior (of the water tower),” said Parish. “We knew we had to do the interior, but then they said the well house and the chemicals had to be segregated from the rest of it.”

Parish kept the information about the repairs on file, and when the city learned of the potential to receive a SCDP grant, the city threw its name into the funding hat. 

“I’m just happy the city had very little cost in it,” said Parish of the grant and necessary repairs. He also credited the work of the city’s engineering company, Bolten and Menk, for helping the city to receive the grant. 

Construction is expected to begin as soon as next year on the new well house, which will segregated from the rest of the facility, as well as the water tower repairs. The final cost of the project is not known at this time, but is expected to cost in excess of $600,000. 

Minnesota State Senator Jordan Rasmusson congratulated the City of Deer Creek in receiving the large state grant to fund the repairs at its water tower and well house. 

“Congratulations to the City of Deer Creek on being selected as a 2023 Small Cities Development Program grant recipient. This funding will go a long way in making critical public facility improvements. Thank you to the local officials and stakeholders who helped secure this much-needed funding,” said Rasmusson.