Holiday lights shine bright for Mandan, sparks questions about Bismarck

Published: Dec. 6, 2022 at 7:34 PM CST|Updated: Dec. 7, 2022 at 10:59 AM CST
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - The “Holiday Lights on Main” in Mandan have been a bright spot for the community so far this winter season. But the project has sparked questions from Bismarck residents, about why the capital city doesn’t have something similar to bring people together.

Mandan continues to add value to the downtown area, this winter its hope of bringing people together with a holiday wonderland came true and Mandan citizens are beaming about the results.

“I think it’s a super positive thing that came, my children love it, we’ve already been there a few times. Everyone that does come says it’s awesome,” said Annie Berger, manager at Copper Dog Cafe in Mandan.

Bismarck has a small display in Peace Park, sponsored by Bismarck Parks and Rec, but a city commissioner says finding space is a big snowy hill to climb.

”Well one of the things, just sheer space. One of the things, if you take a look back, some of the discussion was with the old depot and there’s been a few different owners since so we’ll have to take a look and see what the plans look like for that moving forward,” said City Commissioner Steve Marquardt.

Businesses in downtown Mandan say it’s not only added holiday spirit to downtown but brought in more business for them as well.

“Now it’s almost like okay, let’s not forget the Christmas lights are going so let’s make sure we’re staying on top of everything so that in case it gets busy,” added Berger.

Besides space, Commissioner Steve Marquardt says other issues are finding a service group with the energy to spearhead the project and raise money for a display. He says the city is open to those discussions. Right now, the Downtown Business Association of Bismarck is in charge of hanging the winter decorations downtown and has said if anyone is interested in donating or sponsoring a lighting project to contact them at