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Colfax approves agreement with Holden Church for fairgrounds food stand

By LeAnn R. Ralph

COLFAX  —  The Holden food stand has been a fixture at the Colfax Free Fair for decades.

And now that the food stand is being replaced, the Colfax Village Board and the Holden Church Council have decided a written agreement about use, ownership and maintenance of the food stand would be a good idea.

The Colfax Village Board approved an agreement with Holden Lutheran Church at the October 12 meeting.

Scott Gunnufson, village president, noted that he had brought it to the village board’s attention at a previous meeting that Holden was planning to rebuild the food stand.

The village board wants to know that the village is honoring the same obligation as it had before, he said.

“The question was — what are those details?” Gunnufson asked.

Lynn Niggemann, village administrator-clerk-treasurer, worked with representatives from Holden Church to write up the agreement, he said.

Niggemann had looked through the village’s records but was unable to find any previous agreements between the village and Holden Church.

According to the agreement approved by the village board October 12, the landowner at the fairgrounds is the Village of Colfax, and as the landowner, the village is granting permission for Holden Church to rebuild the food stand in the same location.

The agreement also states that the Holden Church has the right to full use of the fair stand, and the Village of Colfax agrees that any income generated by the food stand belongs to Holden Church.

Regarding maintenance and insurance, the agreement states that all maintenance and insurance costs are the responsibility of Holden Church.

And the church must receive approval of all events from the village administrator-clerk’s office to confirm the availability and use of the fairgrounds.

If Holden Church ever decides to sell the food stand, the agreement gives the Village of Colfax the right of first refusal.

The agreement also states that any sale of the Holden food stand would require approval from the Colfax Village Board, and if the food stand were sold, it must be used for a similar purpose by a non—profit organization.

The agreement “reflects past practice,” said Rita Sundstrom, a representative for Holden Church.

“It’s a great agreement … The Holden food stand agreement is necessary for the board to approve or deny so Holden can move forward with the understanding of long-term intent,” he said.

“I think it protects us and you,” Sundstrom said.

Bruce Fransway, president of the Holden Church Council, will sign the agreement, she said.

Niggemann said she would have the agreement notarized.

“That way you’ll have a record, and we’ll have a record, and there won’t be any issues in the future,” Sundstrom said.

Mark Halpin, village trustee, asked about the timeline for completion of the new facility.

The new food stand will be built this fall. Church members do not want to wait until next spring because that is cutting it too close to the fair in June, Sundstrom said.

The new Holden food stand will be the same color as the refreshment building, beer garden and arts and crafts building, she noted.

The Colfax Village Board unanimously approved the agreement with Holden Church.

In addition to Gunnufson and Halpin, Village Trustees Carey Davis, Dave Wolff, and Jeremy Klukas voted in favor of the motion.

Village Trustee Annie Schieber was absent from the meeting.