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Historic Zumbrota Covered Bridge prepares to reopen after winter roof collapse

ZUMBROTA, Minn. (KTTC) — Nearly eight months after heavy snowfall and winds caused extensive damage to Zumbrota’s historical covered bridge, repairs are finishing up.

There’s definitely a light to the end of this tunnel. Back in late February, winter weather damaged the historic bridge, causing the roof to collapse. Right now, you can see the progress being made; the sheeting is being put on to finish the roof.

Because the covered bridge is such an important landmark to the community, residents have been stepping up to help. In fact, lumber for the new roof was donated by a local business.

“Besides being our town’s identity, it’s the only remaining covered bridge in Minnesota, so it draws people from all over the country,” said Mayor Bradley Drenckhahn. “Every day there’s somebody stopped in front of it, taking a picture, or walking through it. It’s still a vital part of our town, it’s a usable way to get into the park, out to our pools. It’s very important to us. And evidentially to a lot of people, too. Which is humbling.”

Insurance wise, the bridge is protected up to one million dollars in damages. The roof collapse is estimated to cost about a quarter of that.

The great news: the bridge is expected to be finished in mid-November, weather permitting. Mayor Bradley Drenckhahn is planning on throwing a re-opening party once that happens.

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Maddy Wierus

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