Collin O'Beiglo, Joe Wathier, Andy Sollien and Justin Ward work on building the concession stand for the softball field at Steam Engine Park.  HEATHER KLEIBOER/NEWS-RECORD
Collin O'Beiglo, Joe Wathier, Andy Sollien and Justin Ward work on building the concession stand for the softball field at Steam Engine Park. HEATHER KLEIBOER/NEWS-RECORD
The Mabel-Canton building trades class has a worthwhile project this spring: to build a new concession stand and storage shed at Steam Engine Park. The structure will replace the one destroyed in the flood last June.

Instructor Paul Tollefsrud said the class usually builds a yard shed as part of the curriculum each year. The City of Mabel was going to have local contractor Orel Tollefson construct the concession stand when Tollefson referred the project over to the school.

"He let them (the city) know that I would probably be interested in doing it," Tollefsrud said.

At the time of this report, the project was about three weeks in the making but behind schedule due to several days of missed school. Tollefsrud hopes the structures to be complete and in use by the time softball begins in early April.

Tollefsrud said the students have been enthusiastic about the project. The students like building and hands-on learning more than being "lectured to," he added. "Kids are very receptive to this type of project."

Collin O'Bieglo, a student in the building trades class, added, "It's just fun to do, and a learning experience, too so if you ever have to build something like it you have experience in it."

"It's nice to know you are helping out the community," said student Noah Manning.

"I think it's great," said Mabel Public Works Director Bob Mierau. "It's great that the kids can build it. Obviously, that's one of the main reason we did that is to give them the experience rather than just going to purchase something."

The city is providing the materials for the projects, which will then be reimbursed by their insurance company.

"It's a good learning experience and it is something that they can do hopefully to learn some basic things - so when they have their own house they can maybe do a little bit of work on their own instead of having to hire somebody out," Tollefson concluded.