A celebration of Storm Lake's growth in the 2000 census turned into a celebration of diversity yesterday afternoon. As one speaker put it, Storm Lake is on the forefront of the "New Iowa."
"Rural Iowa is almost all white, aging and decreasing in numbers," said Chuck Offenburger. "In Storm Lake, we're very diverse, much younger and we're growing."
Offenburger pointed out the tie he wore that had part of Iowa artist Grant Wood's "American Gothic," which depicts a farmer and his wife.
"I'm a guy who likes the old Iowa represented in Grant Wood's painting," Offenburger said. "But I'm also a guy who really likes the new Iowa."
The City of Storm Lake hosted a census celebration yesterday to not only to mark the first time its official population has topped 10,000, but to recognize all of the volunteers and businesses that helped make the Census 2000 count possible.
Mayor Jon Kruse compared 2000 census data with that of 1990. Growth was definitely apparent.
"Our growth came about due to the community's immigrants," he said. "Without it our numbers would look bleak."
Read the rest of this story in the 3/27 Pilot Tribune.