The best of 2013
By April Baumgarten
The Hazen Star is counting down the top 10 stories of 2013 in a two-part series. Here are the events that made the year indistinguishable.
10. Stanton School transformed into hotel
Few news things impressed the residents of Mercer County this year like the Coal Country Inn.
The 91-room hotel opened for business earlier this year, holding its grand opening late March. The $5.5 million project transformed the former Stanton Public School building into what residents would call a beautiful collection of rooms. But the most impressive was turning the dome-shaped gymnasium into a comfortable lobby.
“I had to see the gym,” said Kathy Miller, former cook and a 1981 graduate. “I can’t believe this is the gym.”
The Industrial Construction Inc. concept was approved by the Stanton City Council in November 2012. The Bismarck company plans to house Coal Country power plant workers in the fall and spring, which would allow tourists to stay in the facility in the summer and winter months.
The hotel originally met opposition from several Stanton residents, who voiced traffic and safety concerns. The majority of people during a public hearing raised their hands in favor of the project.
The final product came out better than anticipated but it still has that school-feeling, Mayor Ron Boyko said.