Anderson family dedicates art museum plaza in honor of daughter Brooke

Rose Aristeo

Rose AristeoReporter

The South Dakota Art Museum, in conjunction with former Brookings residents Lynn and Diane Anderson, celebrated the dedication of the newly constructed Anderson Plaza to honor their daughter, Brooke Anderson.

“It was a beautiful fall day, the weather was beautiful, it was a good turnout. It was a nice event,” said Jeanne Manzer, information supervisor of University Relations, speaking on the Oct. 22 dedication ceremony.

In June of 2005, Brooke Anderson, 1997 Brookings High School graduate and University of Illinois graduate, passed away due to cardiac arrhythmia.

Landscape architect and Lance Meyerink, owner of Groundwater, Inc., designed the 5,500 square-foot plaza.

Meyerink, of Sioux Falls, worked with SDSU Facilities and Services to create the plaza and its surrounding scenery, which consists of a 2,700 square-foot paved area, various greenery and eight benches dedicated on behalf of Brooke’s 1997 graduating class and members of the Anderson family.

“We are ecstatic to have the Anderson Plaza as part of the museum grounds. It will be a place for contemplation and conversation for visitors,” said SDAM director, Lynn Verschoor, in a press release.

President David Chicoine and SDAM Board of Trustees member and artist Dorothy Morgan were among the speakers during the event.

In 1986, the Anderson’s moved to Brookings, where Diane became actively involved with the SDAM. She spent a great deal of time volunteering for the art museum as well as for the art-in-the-schools program. Since the mid-1990s Diane has served as a museum board member.

Out of appreciation to the museum and its hard working staff, the Anderson’s aspired to give back. The dedication of the Anderson Plaza fulfilled their desire to not only honor the SDAM, but to honor their daughter’s memory as well.

SDAM Marketing Specialist, Dianne Hawks acknowledged the help of SDSU fraternity Delta Chi. Hawks said the fraternity volunteers their time to SDAM assisting with receptions and various other events put on by the museum.

Jason Mack, senior business economics major and Delta Chi treasurer says that the fraternity has a long time relationship with SDAM and that he fully enjoys his time spent volunteering there.

“The people are really nice, they joke with us, and I really enjoy it,” Mack said.

The Anderson Plaza is currently still under construction and has plans for future landscaping. The Anderson’s hope the SDSU and Brookings communities will utilize this new development to their benefit, essentially as a place to gather for receptions, celebrations and presentations.

#1.1743589:1104597843.png:Anderson Plaza 11-03-2010 78:The newly dedicated Anderson Plaza will be used for outdoor events and presentations. Currently there are plans for additional landscaping.:Collegian Photo by Rachelle Sather