Construction was needed because of movement in the east and west walls, said Mark Hoven, Aberdeen's park superintendent. The renovation, which began in December, primarily was to fortify the walls of the castle.
"The castle doesn't look dramatically different; it just looks more open inside," Hoven said.
The first production of Storybook Land Theatre is June 17, the tentative date for all construction and cleanup to be finished at the castle, Hoven said.
Weather and the water in the castle's moat caused movement in the walls, Hoven said. The movement wasn't drastic but was enough to cause concern, he said.
During the construction, bricks purchased by donors and engraved with names were removed from the castle floor for safekeeping. These bricks will be put back once construction is complete.
The tower accessible to the public at the castle was unaffected by the construction, Hoven said. The wall to which it is attached was stable, and the only work the tower needs is cosmetic work, he said.
JDH Construction of Aberdeen handled the $43,200 renovation, said Doug Johnson, the director of Aberdeen's Parks, Recreation and Forestry Department. The money originally was to be used on Melgaard Park, but the castle was a more pressing matter, Johnson said. Funding also came from promotional funds allocated by the City Council, he said.
Future construction plans for the castle:
• In the fall, soil will be built up and rocks placed around the castle, Johnson said. Over the years, water has eroded soil from the base of the castle, he said.
• Possible structures to provide shade in the castle's more open design will be considered, Hoven said.
The castle is home to Storybook Land Theater performances during the summer. Performances are from June through August.
The castle also is available for the public to rent. Reservations can be made with Aberdeen's Parks, Recreation and Forestry Department at 605-626-7015.