Moorhead's water tower wins Tank of the Year competition

Iconic tower on former Seneca site was dubbed People's Choice in online poll

A view of the corn tower as a storm rolls into Rochester on Friday, Aug. 20, 2021. Traci Westcott / Post Bulletin
Traci Westcott
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ROCHESTER -- Being named the People’s Choice wasn’t enough for Olmsted County’s iconic ear-of-corn water tower to be named Tank of the Year.

The award, announced Friday, went to another Minnesota water tower -- Moorhead’s.

The honor pitted nearly 300 U.S. and Canadian water tanks against each other to see which had the most impressive use of coatings in the industry.

The annual competition is held by Missouri-based Tnemec Company, Inc., which specializes in coatings and linings that protect water tank surfaces and structures.


Moorhead water tower.jpg
This new water tower on the far southeast side of Moorhead features artwork design by Stephen Dorsey and Jack Lunde. (Barry Amundson / The Forum)

It was announced Oct. 18 that the ear-of-corn-shaped tower on the former Seneca site was named the People’s Choice after receiving 5,000 votes in online polling.

The Rochester tower, which was purchased by the county with the former Seneca site for $5.6 million in 2019, was repainted this year after the closed canning facility was demolished.

Being named People’s Choice put the Rochester tower in the running with 11 Tnemec-selected tanks for the annual honor.

Moorhead’s 750,000-gallon water tower features a colorful wrap-around mural that is coated by one of Tnemec’s finishes.

Randy Petersen joined the Post Bulletin in 2014 and became the local government reporter in 2017. An Elkton native, he's worked for a variety of Midwest papers as reporter, photographer and editor since graduating from Winona State University in 1996. Readers can reach Randy at 507-285-7709 or
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