FORT LARAMIE – A large crowd of people, including representatives from Goshen County Economic Development Corporation and the town of Fort Laramie, turned out for the Fort Laramie Community Center business after hours event Thursday evening.
Attendees enjoyed touring the former Fort Laramie-Lingle Middle School, as well as conversing over drinks, soup and cornbread.
“We’re very impressed with what the space has to offer,” GCEDC CEO Ashley Harpstreith said Thursday, referencing the building’s basketball court, commercial kitchen, bar, dining area, potential for meetings and events – a “very successful” black tie gala was held at this location on New Year’s Eve – and more.
Earlier Thursday, GCEDC met and agreed to grant Fort Laramie’s neighboring municipality, Lingle, $40,000 to assist in building its own community center. The county’s .25-cent sales tax made the grant possible, according to Harpstreith.
“We’re very pleased to award $40,000 to the Town of Lingle,” she said.
Following the meeting, GCEDC board members toured the Fort Laramie convenience store, set to open later this month.
“The convenience store will offer ice cream … lots of unique items and gifts,” Harpstreith said.
The busy day in western Goshen County capped off with the business after hours event.
“Today was an excellent showcase for the potential of Fort Laramie,” Harpstreith said. “It’s always great to see the community, and it was an excellent time to get my board out of the box.”
GCEDC Board President Bob Taylor agreed.
“This is great for this community,” he said.
The Town of Fort Laramie held an official ribbon cutting for the community center in July, after acquiring the building at 102 West Otis St. with the assistance of GCEDC and the U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development.