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Special Events

Stormwater Quiz Show

Monday, June 4, 2018
5:45 – 6:30 p.m.

Students & New Professionals: Come test your knowledge on stormwater, drinking water and wastewater! This is a social event to learn about the projects the Water, Wastewater, Stormwater Council is doing, how we integrate with other councils, and opportunities to get involved. Light refreshments will be served.

Key Social at the Mill City Museum (ticketed event)

Wednesday, June 6, 2018
6:00 – 9:30 p.m.
Price: $75.00/person

Busses for key social will stage at 5:15 p.m. in front of the Hyatt Regency Hotel on Nicollet Mall.

The EWRI Congress is excited to hold the key social at the Mill City Museum this year. The museum features exhibits about the history of Minneapolis, flour milling machinery, a water lab and a baking lab. The centerpiece of the exhibit is the multistory Flour Tower, where visitors sit in the cab of a freight elevator and are taken to different floors of the building, each designed to look like a floor in a working flour mill. Voices of people who worked in the Washburn A Mill are heard throughout the show. Visitors exit on the 8th floor, where extant equipment is interpreted by staff, and are then led to the ninth-floor observation deck to view St. Anthony Falls.

The first Washburn A Mill, built by Cadwallader C. Washburn in 1874, was declared the largest flour mill in the world upon its completion, and contributed to the development of Minneapolis. On May 2, 1878, a spark ignited airborne flour dust within the mill, creating an explosion that demolished the Washburn A and killed 18 workers instantly. The ensuing fire resulted in the deaths of four more people, destroyed five other mills, and reduced Minneapolis’s milling capacity by one third. Known as the Great Mill Disaster, the explosion made national news and served as a focal point that led to reforms in the milling industry. In order to prevent the buildup of combustible flour dust, ventilation systems and other precautionary devices were installed in mills throughout the country.

In 1991 a fire nearly destroyed the old mill, but during the late 1990s, the city of Minneapolis, through the Minneapolis Community Development Agency, worked to stabilize the mill ruins. After the city had cleared the rubble and reinforced the mill's damaged walls, the Minnesota Historical Society announced plans to construct a milling museum and education center within the ruins.

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