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Alex Ames and his Fifth Avenue Exhibit
Alex Ames explains one of the displays in his exhibit. Photo by's Jim Maurice

ST. CLOUD — There’s a new exhibit featuring the history of one of St. Cloud’s most historic streets. The “Paths to the Future” exhibit highlights Fifth Avenue and the cultural and economic role it played in shaping St. Cloud as we know it today.

St. Cloud State University student Alex Ames put the exhibit together.  He says Fifth Avenue served as a cultural divide.  The richer New England Protestants lived to the east of Fifth Avenue.

However, Ames says there was a much different neighborhood on the other side of the street.  That’s where the less well-to-do German Catholics settled.

Ames says the separation of the classes along Fifth Avenue started to break down by the 1940s and 50s.

AUDIO: Listen to Alex Ames talk about how Fifth Avenue influenced St. Cloud’s early days in this conversation with WJON’s Jim Maurice.

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Ames’ exhibit is in the brand new SCSU Welcome Center, which also happens to be along Fifth Avenue. It’s free and open for anyone to take a look at during the regular Welcome Center hours.

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