Minnehaha County to pursue legal action on Fair Grounds deed restrictions
State law allows land divestiture if it's impossible or impractical to use
Minnehaha County will pursue a civil action to determine whether there is legal authority to remove deed restrictions on land that was donated for the W.H. Lyon Fair Grounds.
In a 4-0 vote Tuesday, the County Commission authorized county legal officials to seek the civil action. It was one of the main recommendations of a 15-member task force that studied the fair from May 2022 to May 2023, when the task force issued its final report.
Minnehaha County acquired the land for the Fair Grounds between 1938 and 1942 through donations from Winona Axtell to honor her late husband, William H. Lyon. But the donations came with strings: The county is required to hold a fair on the site, and if a fair isn’t held for five years there, the land reverts back to the Lyon descendants.
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