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Creating a Virtual Tour of Bonanzaville

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West Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) - A man who's been going to Bonanzaville his entire life is trying to preserve it online... In case something like the St. John's Lutheran Church fire were to ever happen again.

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He's creating a virtual tour of the Pioneer Village.

Brian Frank sets up a camera outside the Brass Rail Saloon.

It will begin to take hundreds of pictures automatically, a process that can take hours.

When it's done, Frank will download it to his computer, stitch it together, and put it online.

Brian Frank/Creating a Virtual Tour of Bonanzaville: "for what I've got, it does alright."

He's been out here all summer working on capturing everything Bonanzaville has to offer.

Photography is a hobby of his...only recently did he decide he could use it to preserve the exhibits, some of which are seeing wear and tear.

Frank: "I enjoy seeing old artifacts, I enjoy seeing how things were and learning about some of that, I'm hoping that this will be around not only for my children but for my children's children."

One of the finished products is a large, very detailed panoramic photo which can be zoomed in on for greater detail.

Frank uses a separate type of camera to actually put exhibits on Google Maps Street View, he says this could be useful for anyone with a disability who can't make it into a building.

Bonanzaville officials say they appreciate the work he's doing and hope it will draw more people in.

Emily Wehlander/Bonanzaville: "I think that this will just entice people, gives them a little bit to see, a little teaser, and then they'll want to come out here because there's so much detail, that you just can't get all that detail."

Using photography to make sure exhibits can be seen as they were...no matter what happens.

Frank says he'd also like to volunteer at Bonanzaville.

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