Top 3 Vibrant Communities | October 5 – 9
October 12, 2015 by Blandin Foundation
1. Bemidji: Now not only “the first city on the Mississippi,” but also, unofficially dubbed, “the emerging start-up city of Minnesota,” Bemidji has reason to celebrate — four reasons to be exact. From the Bemidji Pioneer, “A recent ranking of America’s fastest-growing companies included four from Bemidji.” The north-central Minnesota community has created an entrepreneurial culture by offering support resources like the Mayflower Building, which offers space for networking and offices, and mentorship programs through the Small Business Development Center.
2. Red Wing: Usually when we use “Red Wing” and “fiber” in the same sentence, we’re talking about rural broadband — not today! Five years ago, fiber farmers in southeast Minnesota were having trouble selling their wool for more than the cost to shear it. Instead of throwing in the towel, farmers came together to create the Sheep & Fiber Farm Tour to drum up interest and help with sales. Last weekend, 12 farms participated in the fifth tour.
3. Grand Rapids: $5,079,985. That’s the total economic impact of arts and culture organizations in Grand Rapids. This figure comes from the 2015 Creative MN Report compiled by Minnesota Advocates for the Arts. “Punching above its weight,”… “Grand Rapids was the 14th largest community in terms of population amongst the 17 studied, [but] it was fourth largest in terms of economic impact per resident, making it an anomaly within the state.”
Visit Blandin Foundation
Receive Outposts E-News
Sign up to receive stories about innovation and leadership in rural Minnesota.