Flowers coming to Keystone’s Winter Street businesses

By Jeff Smith


Keystone will be adding flowers to Winter Street in an effort to draw more visitors to the businesses there.

Beth Buckwalter Miller with Presidential Hospitality talked about adding flowers on Winter Street for the summer tourist season at town board meeting on May 16.

“I think we could jazz it up with flowers and it will look a lot more appealing,” Miller said.

It was brought up that Keystone has done something similar before and it didn’t really work out.

If the flowers aren’t watered they could die and will make Keystone less attractive.

Miller told the audience and trustees that people with the businesses she represents will be pleased to take on watering the flowers.

“People are coming, let’s welcome them,” Miller said.

The Keystone Fire Department will need to help hang the flowers and the town will also need to find out if there are more hangers.

Miller said she is willing to take on the project and find the money.

Tammy Gilbertson with Battle Creek Lodge expressed concern about watering them and the placement of the flowers on Winter Street.

Gilbertson said it might be hard to pull off this time of year and the Keystone Chamber of Commerce has talked about adding flags to the main street area. She didn’t want flowers to detract the chamber board from their plan.

She also said that there should be some type of responsibility placed on Winter Street businesses to provide money or else they might not appreciate the flowers.

Miller said that she doesn’t want it to happen if it’s not going to be beautiful.

“I would love to see it happen and expand it every year if we can,” Miller said. 

The estimate on the flowers she received is $8,000. She was also going to figure out a solid plan and then see what businesses can contribute.

The town board decided to donate $1,000 out of the promotional fund based on if the Keystone Chamber of Commerce board wanted to donate funds too. The Keystone Chamber of Commerce decided to approve $1,000 for flowers too.

Another issue that came up at the town board meeting was the Keystone Community Center’s lack of policy on weapons and dogs in the building.

Trinity Rapp with the Keystone library board said the library board was looking from instruction from city attorney Mitch Johnson.

Johnson said the law clearly states that for dogs to be in public places they have to serve a purpose.

“They have to be designated service dogs. You can’t just bring in any dog,” Johnson said.

Businesses and people in other places can ask what service a dog provides but can’t ask about a person’s disability.

Senate Bill 119, which was signed into law, clarified the language for use of a service animal and what is required from owners. After the discussion last  Wednesday night, it was decided to post a sign in the library and elsewhere in the Keystone Community Center that states “service animals only”.

The weapons policy might be harder to enforce because the only places where guns are prohibited are county courthouses, bars, elementary schools and secondary schools.

Rapp realizes that a piece of paper is not going to stop people from bringing weapons in the building.

“I’m not against your rights. I’m only bringing this up because Hill City School District is requesting that we have a weapons policy so they can continue to tutor here,” Rapp said.

The question that Johnson wants to research is if the Keystone Community Center can be labeled as a school during times of tutoring.

Rapp wants to make sure tutors are able to come to Keystone in case other children need assistance in the future.

Rick Brandfas, Keystone town board president, asked why the tutoring has to be done at the community center. He said tutors can go to a home or a church.

Another point Brandfas made was that children face peer pressure to be cool or show off if there are other children around.

Mike Trike, a Keystone resident, brought up that the concern is not about a gun, but about knives and edged weapons.

“Let’s make sure it’s clear what started this to begin with so we can move forward to make a policy correct,” Trike said.

It was decided to table any motion about a weapons policy to the next meeting.

Justin Moss, trustee with the Keystone town board, made a motion to set the new meeting time for the town board meeting to 5 p.m. It was decided that for the summer the new time for the Keystone town board meeting will be at 5 p.m.

Temple Estrada, executive director of the Keystone Chamber of Commerce, said the chamber board voted to create a Facebook Jobs page for the community to post job openings. Since there is a shortage of workers the chamber board committed funding to advertise the page on XRock FM 101.1 and 103.5. They are hoping to reach the 18-35 demographic. The radio station also matched the funds set forth by the chamber board. The radio station will be pushing the jobs page for the next month.

Estrada was asked if she has been visiting businesses. She said this time of year when she is not at the Visitor Information Center she will be visiting businesses.

The Keystone Visitor Information Center opened on May 17. Estrada said the hours the center is open get longer as the season goes on. The center is staffed until September.

The Chamber of Commerce will also have a new website by mid-June.

The Keystone Historical Museum is also seeing the impact of the increase of visitors that are in the area.  Jeanie Kirkpatrick, director of the museum, said the first week the museum was open this year they had 80 visitors. Last year they had 19 visitors their first week.

Chris Plawman, deputy with the Pennington County Sheriff’s Department, said there has been an increase in the amount of thefts that have occurred in Keystone.

“I’m diligently working to find out who it it is or who they are,” Plawman said.

He requested the city to remind people to lock everything up before they leave their house. Plawman also told people not to leave valuables in their cars at night.

There wasn’t a lot of big value items being stolen but there is a trend going on.

“I’m trying to nip it in the backside as quick as possible,” Plawman said.

Jerry Przybylski, public works superintendent, said well number five is running and the first few days it was pumping 79 gallons a minute. Retrofitting the well number three is making headway. Przybylski said at a progress meeting the contractor RCS Construction is planning to have the project done the first week of July or sometime before Independence Day.

Gilbertson spoke about a complaint she received from her guests concerning this project. There were people working out in the spot in front of Holiday Inn around 6:15 a.m.

Deputy Chris Plawman said there isn’t a Keystone ordinance for quiet hours but there is just a county ordinance.

“However it is pretty vague,” Plawman said.

He said he would come across this problem in Rapid City and it was more about evening hours.

In Rapid City, he would enforce the quiet hours from the time people go to bed, around 9:30-10 p.m. to when they would wake up 6- 6:30 a.m.

Przybylski said he would talk to the project manager and ask them to not have any loud noises during the early hours of the day.