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South Dakota city mourns urban cornstalk’s brief life

UPDATED: Thu., Aug. 20, 2020

Associated Press

Associated Press

Residents of South Dakota’s largest city are mourning an urban cornstalk that briefly became a lighthearted beacon of hope during the coronavirus pandemic.

The Argus Leader reported Wednesday the stalk had been growing through a crack in the concrete at the intersection of 57th Street and Minnesota Avenue on Sioux Falls’ south side.

Dubbed the 57th Street Corn, complete with its own Twitter account during its brief lifespan, the plant was a symbol of resiliency and hope as the pandemic rages on, Mayor Paul TenHaken said.

“Finding joy in the small things will continue to help us get through what has been a challenging time in our country,” the mayor said. “It was ‘amaizing’ to see the community rally around the 57th Street corn as a sign of hope over the past few days.”

Residents reported Wednesday morning someone had ripped out the lone stalk, prompting an outcry on social media. Someone attached a sign to a traffic post where the stalk grew that reads “CORN RIP.”

The Stockyards Ag Experience, a group working to transform the city’s vacant stockyards into an interactive experience, is selling T-shirts commemorating the stalk.

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