Randall, Minn., looks toward recovery after flooding forces evacuation of 30 homes

An aerial view of flooding in Randall, Minnesota
An aerial view of flooding in Randall, Minn., on Friday, after heavy rain sent the Little Elk River out of its banks. This view is from the north side of the community, looking southeast.
Morrison County Sheriff's Office

The mayor of Randall says his central Minnesota town is recovering after major flooding over the weekend.

The Little Elk River runs right through Randall, a town of about 600 people just northwest of Little Falls.

Nearly a foot of rain deluged the town during a storm last Thursday night and early Friday, sending the river out of its banks.

Residents of about 30 homes had to be evacuated, some by rescue boat. Some stayed in three emergency shelters set up at local churches and an elementary school.

Mayor Danny Noss said the water has receded, but there's still clean up to do. City staff have been working nearly around-the-clock, he said, and people have offered to help provide food and clothing to those affected.

An aerial view of flooding in Randall, Minnesota
An aerial view of flooding in Randall, Minn., on Friday. This view is looking east toward U.S. Highway 10 on the north side of the city.
Morrison County Sheriff's Office

"Like any small town, especially in Minnesota, everybody hangs together and helps everybody,” he said.

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City streets and U.S. Highway 10 have reopened. Noss said it will probably take another week for the river to return to normal levels.

The city has declared an emergency due to the flooding, and plans to apply for state and federal aid, Noss said.

The Morrison County Sheriff’s Office has been urging people to use caution when driving in the area, due to the potential for road washouts. It’s also asking the general public to stay away so recovery efforts can continue.

An aerial view of flooding in Randall, Minnesota
An aerial view of flooding along U.S. Highway 10 near Randall, Minn., on Friday.
Morrison County Sheriff's Office

Displaced residents are being allowed to return to their homes once they’ve been verified to be safe.

Noss said Randall will recover. The city’s annual Independence Day celebration will go on as scheduled on Saturday, including a parade, music, food, a baseball game and a street dance.

“We're not going to let this get us down,” he said.