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Ringen retires after 38 years in dentistry

Local dentist Art Ringen retired June 30 after 38 years of practicing dentistry in Lennox.

Ringen, who came to Lennox in June 1982, decided he wanted to pursue dentistry when he was a junior in high school in Slayton, MN. After graduating from high school in 1970, he started his college career in Morris, MN before getting accepted into dental school in Minneapolis.

“By the time I was a junior, I kind of set my sights on that. I liked my hometown dentist. I can’t say that he was encouraging me on a regular basis. I guess I looked up to him and wanted to do something with my hands,” he said.

After graduating from dental school, he got his license and then went to work as an associate at a dental clinic in Windom, MN, and then in Worthington, MN. He and his wife, Tonya, decided to leave Minnesota and wanted to find something in the Sioux Falls area.

Ringen found the dental clinic in Lennox. The practice had been for sale when he wrote the owner a letter. It took a few weeks before he heard anything because the practice ended up being part of an estate since the dentist had died in a car accident around the time Ringen had sent the letter.

Once he purchased the practice, he had to get a temporary license from South Dakota before he could take the test. They got everything together and he saw his first patient June 4, 1982.

When he came to town, he operated his dental practice out of the Mayme Jane’s building and stayed there for almost 13 years. In 1995, he built the building on South Main.

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