American Crystal Sugar helps the U of M, Crookston Keep the Heat On

CSteam Patch-1.jpgrookston, Minn.  -  With the cool fall weather, the University of Minnesota, Crookston was grateful for the help of American Crystal Sugar Company in keeping the heating system working recently. On Tuesday, October 27, facilities staff on campus investigated an issue that led to the discovery of a break in the high pressure steam line near an expansion joint in the heating tunnels on the north side of Skyberg Hall, a student residence facility located near the Sports Center.

After checking with local vendors in Crookston, Grand Forks, and Fargo, and even a visit by the water department in Crookston--none of which led to a workable solution--Brian Christiansen, a maintenance supervisor on the campus, suggested a call to American Crystal Sugar Company. The call was directed to Tom Dravits, an employee of American Crystal, who located a high pressure steam line collar in their supply inventory.

Steam Patch-2.jpgThe high pressure steam collar was installed and helped the campus avoid having to rebury the line in order to continue to supply heat to the residence hall. The campus was able to maintain the heat thanks to the installation of the collar and to continue work on the line to prepare it for the cold months ahead thanks to the parts and expertise provided by American Crystal.

Tim Norton, director of facilities and operations on the Crookston campus, was appreciative of the help provided to the campus. "We are grateful for the Crookston Water Department who came out and tried to assist us," explains Norton, "and also to Tom Dravits and everyone at American Crystal who helped locate what we needed. We are fortunate to have such great neighbors in Crookston who were willing to help when we needed it."

Today the University of Minnesota, Crookston delivers more than 25 applied-science undergraduate degree programs and 50 concentrations, including several online degrees, in agriculture; arts, humanities and social sciences; business; math, science and technology; and natural resources. To learn more, visit

Contact: Tim Norton, director, facilities and operations, 218-281-8490 (; Elizabeth Tollefson, assistant director of communications, 218-281-8432 (