Prairie Heritage Center: Rotunda Exhibit Update

The Dan and Jean Struve Charitable Fund Benefiting the Prairie Heritage Center will provide funds to develop and enhance environmental and conservation education and is intended to be fully spent  on a major redesign of the main gallery at the Center over the next four years.

A design charrette, led by design team Kraemer Design + Production, Inc and M. Catton & Co., was held on June 24, 2021 at the Prairie Heritage Center with O’Brien County Conservation Board members and staff members. The purpose of the charrette was to determine goals and create a vision for refreshing and energizing the exhibits in the upper rotunda. During this meeting four main goals have been identified:

  • Freshening up the current experience at the Prairie Heritage Center
  • Adding in more interactive elements
  • Fostering an opportunity for learning that engages all guests
  • Creating an experience that you feel immersed in by using all your senses

The design team has taken those goals, with existing exhibits in mind, and have created a pre-conceptual design as represented in the sketches below. Not only did they come up with refreshed ideas for the first floor but they went beyond that and created some ways that the lower level and outside area can have even more interactive exhibits as well.

As part of the pre-conceptual design phase the design sketches, as you see below, are on display at the Prairie Heritage Center for people to leave feedback on as the process moves into the conceptual design phase. Please visit the Prairie Heritage Center over the next few weeks to view each design concept up close and share what you love, what you don’t, and any additional ideas you would like to see incorporated. Your feedback is an important part of the process.

Along with creating goals and an overall vision the design team helped create a road map to follow as the project continues along. The goal is to have design concepts and phases 1-4 completed over the next four years. To review this road map click here: Prairie Heritage Center Design Phase Road Map

O’Brien County Conservation Board along with the Little Sioux Valley Conservation Association will be writing grants, fundraising, and asking for donations to work through each of these phases to multiply the dollars from the Dan and Jean Struve Charitable Fund. For information on how you can give to the charitable fund or the endowment fund within the O’Brien County Community Foundation please visit We hope that you will join on this journey and help make this vision come alive.