Rooted in preserving the past while celebrating the present, Sanctuary Events Center is a unique space for cultivating memories, sharing experiences and contributing to the cultural growth of downtown Fargo. Inquire about your event today!
First founded in 1886, St. Mark’s was the first English-speaking church in Dakota Territory. The church was started by Lutheran missionary William F. Ulery, who raised $2,000 for the original structure by going door-to-door throughout Fargo-Moorhead to raise funds. Across the country, the Lutheran church had been in crisis mode after church leaders refused to change the language of the church to English. Thousands of young people who did not understand German, Swedish or Norwegian services were flocking to other English-speaking/non-Lutheran churches. Ulery’s quest was to show that the Lutheran faith could be taught in English.
The current St. Mark’s church was completed and dedicated in 1912. As St. Mark’s congregation and Sunday School program, additions and improvements were completed. The education wing was added on the east side of the church and dedicated in 1952. The 10,950-square-foot addition added amenities like chapel and overflow seating for the sanctuary, offices for pastor and staff, lounges, a kitchen, a Luther League/Choir Room and multiple classrooms for Sunday School.
Through the years, St. Mark’s became known for its downtown ministry, which included helping the homeless and others in need. It was also a Reconciling in Christ church, which means it declared itself welcoming to all people, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.
After hearing rumors about the church’s demolition, but seeing its potential to be an economic solution contributing to the vibrancy of downtown Fargo, local redeveloper Kilbourne Group purchased the late gothic revival structure in 2013. The group called on the community to provide input and ideas for potential uses of the space, and proceeded to partner with local investors Aaron Duma, Cam Knutson, Jade Nielsen, and Jon Rustvang in 2014. Since then, Kilbourne Group and the owners of the Sanctuary Events Center plan to invest over $5 million into the renovation plan and designs to revitalize a vital piece of Fargo’s landscape and historical fabric through one of its oldest buildings.
Sanctuary Events Center is proud to host an in-house "event ecosystem" made up of the region's most skilled retailers eager to help you plan your special event. We encourage you to visit their websites to learn more about their services.
To request more information on what we have to offer for weddings or private events please click one of the buttons below. Our team will be in touch with you as soon as possible.