NOT EVEN THE SHROUD of gray mist and gloom which wrapped around Fargo in the late afternoon of a bone-chilling Saturday in early November could quell my enthusiasm for this historic downtown in a city I’ve only begun to explore.
This is my kind of downtown with historic buildings and a vibe that is both vibrant and subdued. I’d feel as comfortable here glammed for an evening on the town as I would kicking about in my jeans and buffalo plaid flannel shirt.
In a brief walk of not quite two blocks—shortened by the drizzle and my desire to keep my camera out of the rain—I realized that I need to revisit this downtown when time and weather allow for a more intimate look.
A quick visual tour revealed well-kept brick buildings with great architectural detail, vintage neon signs, advertising painted on brick walls, art in the sidewalk and a general impression that those who live and work here care about this place.
It’s no wonder that in 2011, Forbes magazine recognized downtown Fargo as one of the nation’s top 10 most transformed neighborhoods.
If you want big box retailers and miles of cement and malls, all of which you could find in Anytown, U.S.A., Fargo has that too, over in West Fargo.
But the downtown, oh, the downtown, that to me holds the personality of Fargo as an historic river and railroad and farming community, appreciative of its past, adapting to the present and aware of its future.
© Copyright 2012 Audrey Kletscher Helbling