Business

Hayward Businesses Prepare for the Unknown as Birkie Week Begins

Participants of The 2021 American Birkebeiner Can Choose to Participate In-Person or Virtually

HAYWARD, Wis. – During an average year, the American Birkebeiner welcomes over 10,000 participants from around the world to the town of Hayward and surrounding communities. However, the COVID-19 pandemic is putting a damper on the normalcy of this year’s event. Not only are the participants feeling the impact, but local businesses are also adjusting to the new reality. “We…

KYN: Blue Rock Coffee & Wine Cafe

DULUTH, Minn. – Although the cafe struggled shortly after opening, now they are becoming a Northland staple. “People are knowing our name and coming in,” Blue Rock Coffee & Wine Cafe Barista, Molly Henderson says. With the cafe split in two- half of the building for coffee and the other a wine bar, customers have different choices of scenery. “It’s…

RJ Sport And Cycle Hosts First Annual Boat Show

Their supply of boats are typically showcased during the yearly boat show at the DECC, but the pandemic forced RJ Sport and Cycle to host their own.

DULUTH, Minn – RJ Sport and Cycle in Hermantown is helping boat enthusiasts fantasize about warmer weather and spending time out on the water. The shop hosted its first annual boat show. Their supply of boats are typically showcased during the yearly boat show at the DECC, but the pandemic forced RJ Sport and Cycle to host their own. A…

Businesses Have Moving Sale, Featuring Computers, Cables, Audio and Video Equipment

Sound Central along with T& E Concert Services and Audio Visual Resources of Duluth are having a moving sale featuring everything from computers to cables and a variety of audio and video equipment.

DULUTH, Minn. – Sound Central along with T& E Concert Services and Audio Visual Resources of Duluth are having a moving sale featuring everything from computers to cables and a variety of audio and video equipment. While the move isn’t COVID related, the businesses have experienced a big change because previous to the pandemic, 80% of what they did was…

Remembering Entrepreneur Joel Labovitz

"He was really larger than life and extremely optimistic," said daughter Anne Labovitz.

DULUTH, Minn. – Duluth entrepreneur and community leader Joel Labovitz passed away over the weekend at the age of 93 and now he is being remembered. “He was really larger than life and extremely optimistic,” said Anne Labovitz. Anne and Mark Labovitz go down memory lane expressing the type of person their father Joel Labovitz was just days after his…

Carlton Restaurants Continue To Adapt Amid Pandemic

CARLTON, Minn. – It was a roller coaster 2020 for restaurants like The Street Car in Carlton. “That’s when it really hit hard for us. That brought a whole different style of business. We had to essentially recreate how we do business,” Street Car Kitchen & Pub General Manager, Mike Walsh says. Going to only curbside the pandemic forced them…

City: Lester Park Golf Course Will Permanently Close After 2023 Season

DULUTH, Minn. – The city of Duluth has announced it is permanently closing Lester Park Golf Course after the 2023 golf season. Chief Administrative Officer Noah Schuchman said the failure to sell Lester Golf real estate, the COVID-19 pandemic, and the collapse of the economy has made it “painfully clear” Duluth can’t operate two golf courses anymore. “When we continued…

City of Duluth Offering Third Round of Free IT Support Classes

Anyone 18 and older, living in St. Louis County with a computer connected to the internet can register.

DULUTH, Minn.- Northlanders looking to start jobs in the IT field can now take a free class in Duluth to refine their skills and get them started. Duluth Workforce Development is once again partnering with SOAR Career Solutions to hold its third set of online IT Support Specialist Classes. Anyone 18 and older, living in St. Louis County with a…

Betty’s Pies Busy on President’s Day, Excited for Better Weather to Bring More Customers

The owner says even with limited dine-in seating takeout orders have remained steady throughout the winter.

TWO HARBORS, Minn.- One popular restaurant along the North Shore, Betty’s Pies has adapted to the pandemic well. But owners say they’re ready for the spring and summer months to bring more traffic again. Betty’s was bumping Monday, staying open an extra day for the President’s Day Weekend. The owner says even with limited dine-in seating takeout orders have remained…

Extreme Cold Keeping Some Property Managers Busy with Repairs on Houses, Apartments

At ShipRock Management maintenance staff offers to check on homes when tenants are away, to catch cold weather damage before it escalates.

DULUTH, Minn.- The recent arctic weather has been harder on homes in the area, especially Duluth’s older, more heat-inefficient houses and apartments. And some property managers say they’re finding their hands full with maintenance. At ShipRock Management, maintenance staff says their 10 full-time crew members have been working around the clock to combat frozen water lines and drains. “This past…

Love, Much-Needed Business in the Air for Northland Restaurants on Valentine’s Day

Both Va Bene and New Scenic Cafe were open for limited dine-in options on the holiday.

DULUTH, Minn.- It seemed Valentine’s Day was the first, closest-to-normal holiday in almost a year, especially for restaurants in the Northland. For some, it was the first time opening up to dine-in customers during the pandemic. “Love is in the air and we’re happy to be a part of it,” said Patrick Moore, co-owner of Va Bene Caffe. The Italian…

Local Businesses Suggest Shopping Local For Your Sweetie This Valentine’s Day

Northland Chocolate and Flower Shops Encourage Customers to Order Early This Year

DULUTH, Minn. – The clock is ticking before time runs out to pre-order your significant other something special. If you’re unaware, Valentine’s Day is coming up this Sunday! Two local businesses in the Northland are doing all they can to make sure your experience is beyond excellent and easy. “You have that instant good feeling when you walk into the…

Walmart and Sams Club to Begin Offering Vaccines for Eligible Recipients

The two stores will begin administering the vaccinations in Minnesota starting on Friday

DULUTH, Minn. – Walmart and Sams Club Pharmacies will be yet another location for people to get Covid-19 vaccinations. The two stores will begin administering the vaccinations in Minnesota starting on Friday as part of the U.S Federal Retail Pharmacy Program. Any eligible customers are urged to schedule an appointment via the companies websites once they are available. For more…

Moose Lake Businesses Adapting During Pandemic

Managers are thankful that they don't have to rely on just dine-in during these times.

MOOSE LAKE, Minn. – Dee Jirovec  and her husband have owned Gampers in Moose Lake for eight years and are grateful to be back open following a second shut down. “It’s wonderful to be open again and have the customers come in to be able and talk and have a good time with them,” Gampers Owner, Dee Jirovec says. And…

Local Gym Finds Pandemic Changes Help Business Flow Better

Over at Impact Sports Training CrossFit gym in Duluth, management says they made a few changes during the pandemic that are now permanent.

DULUTH, Minn. – Over at Impact Sports Training CrossFit gym in Duluth, management says they made a few changes during the pandemic that are now permanent. To keep up with the restrictions on gyms, they dropped the size of classes from 40 people to 22, but then realized that actually makes it easier to coach and give clients more attention….

DECC, Range Recreation Civic Center Among Minnesota Convention Centers Receiving State Grants

The DECC was given $500,000 and the RRCC, $105,000.

DULUTH, Minn.- Convention Centers and Theaters across Minnesota received their own share of $13 million in grants from the state Monday, and two convention centers in the Northland say it is a much needed relief from the effects of the pandemic. The DECC was a recipient of the highest grant amount allowed by the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic…

DECC, Local Theaters Land Thousands in State COVID Relief Grants

It's part of more than $13 million in COVID relief grants, being spread out to convention centers and movie theaters across the state.

DULUTH, Minn.- The Duluth Entertainment Convention Center — hit hard by the pandemic — has finally landed some relief from the state in the amount of $500,000. The grant is coming from the Minnesota Department Of Employment And Economic Development (DEED). It’s part of more than $13 million in COVID relief grants from DEED, being spread out to convention centers…

Yellow Bike Coffee Cafe Expands To Lake Superior College

DULUTH, Minn. – Yellow Bike Coffee Cafe officially opened its new permanent location at Lake Superior College. The café offers a variety of beverages and food options made to order for students to grab while on campus. Yellow Bike Coffee Cafe has a flagship store in Hermantown. The general manager believes opening a location on LSC’s campus reminds people the…

St. Louis County Sees 900 Small Businesses Apply for Phase 3 Grants

The total amount of aid requested comes out to $16.4 million. The county has $3.8 million dollars in grant funding from the state to distribute.

DULUTH, Minn.- 900 businesses in St. Louis County have sought relief through Phase 3 of the county’s small business relief grants. The total amount of aid requested comes out to $16.4 million. The county has $3.8 million dollars in grant funding from the state to distribute. So 200 “first tier” businesses forced to close back in November that received no…

Sport and Recreational Vehicle Sales Growing

"They just wanted a place of their own where they could get away wherever they decided to go," Yost says. 

HERMANTOWN, Minn. – As winter continues, recreational vehicle dealers in the Northland are seeing a lot of people eager to hit the road for new adventures. It has been a wild year for RV dealers, like Bullyans in Hermantown as most of their inventory keeps selling out. “We’re just starting to get it trickled back in. After we sold it…

Bayfield Businesses Report Steady Sales as Pandemic Continues

From Lodging to Entertainment, Many Businesses in Bayfield Say Sales Have Remained Stable as the Pandemic Continues

BAYFIELD, Wis. – Nearly one year into the global pandemic and travel is still frowned upon by many health officials. However, there is one silver lining when it comes to folks avoiding longer vacations. Local businesses in Northland communities are seeing an increase in people taking smaller weekend getaways to escape for a few days. “Outdoor rec is the name…

MN Power Crews Head To NY To Help With Power Outages

The Northland crew is expected to return in about two weeks.

DULUTH, Minn. – Minnesota Power is helping battle power outages in New York, which were caused by the recent NorEaster that left behind about a foot of snow. On Thursday, a five-member crew loaded up and headed for the Big Apple to help restore power for hundreds of New York residents. Minnesota Power leadership says lending a hand is about…

End Of Year Tourism Taxes Made A Strong Turnaround

2020 ended with tourism in Duluth being down by about 30%.

DULUTH, Minn. – Tourism tax revenue in duluth took a hit over the past year as some bars, restaurants, and hotels were forced to close to protect public health during the pandemic, but Duluth’s estimated tourism tax drop ended up lower than expected. Based on trends shown throughout the pandemic, the City of Duluth projected a significant decrease in tourism…

Pandemic Prompting More People to Hit the Slopes at Lutsen Mountains

With Safety Precautions in Place, Staff at Lutsen Mountains is Ready to Welcome Visitors to the Slopes

LUTSEN, Minn. – It’s known as cabin fever, and this year, we may find ourselves letting it sink in earlier due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, many winter weather enthusiasts are embracing current restrictions and taking a trip up the North Shore. “If you would like an action-packed, nature-filled, beautiful landscape ski resort, come to Lutsen Mountains,” exclaimed Rhylee Octavion,…

The Duluth Superior Symphony Returns To Live Concerts

For the first time ever, the DSSO is offering the option to view the event from the comfort of your home.

DULUTH, Minn. – The Duluth Superior Symphony Orchestra is returning to live concerts after a two-month shut down due to the pandemic. Guests can attend a live showing starting this weekend, but due to COVID-19 restrictions, there is only a limited number of seating available. For the first time ever, the DSSO is offering the option to view the event…

Duluth Depot to Remain Closed To Public, Vaccinating Frontline Workers Until April

The vaccines are available to those specific group by appointment only. No walk-ins are allowed. 

DULUTH, Minn.- The St. Louis County Depot has transformed its Great Hall into a small-scale vaccination clinic for front-line healthcare workers – meaning it will remain closed to the general public until April, with no plans for shows or exhibits until then. “We feel like it’s very important that we really push forward with this vaccination effort,” said Mary Tennis,…

Two North Shore Lodges Finish Major Renovations

Mountain Inn at Lutsen and Cascade Lodge and Restaurant Recently Completed Extensive Renovations of Their Lodging Facilities

COOK COUNTY, Minn. – Recent stay-safe restrictions have given many Northlanders more time to tackle projects we couldn’t get done during the busy hustle and bustle of daily lives pre-pandemic. In this week’s Knowing Your Neighbors, you’re invited inside two lodges along the North Shore that are happy to welcome guests into fresh facilities after months of hard work. “There…

Second Harvest Food Bank Sees A Jump in The Number Of People In Need Of Food Assistance

More than 7 million pounds of food has been distributed this year, which equals over 6 million meals.

DULUTH, Minn. – The Second Harvest Food Bank has seen a jump in the need for food assistance across the region this year. Second Harvest officials say this year about 8% more people throughout Northeast Minnesota and Northwest Wisconsin needed help feeding their families. That’s an estimated additional 13,500 people for the year. Also, 20% of the people using the…

Brewery Owners Sound Off Hoping To Make A Change To The Growler Cap Law

"Over 8,000 breweries in the country, we are the only five restricted from selling beer to-go to the consumer. That's crazy we need to make a change," said Lon Larson, the co-owner of Castle Danger Brewery in Two Harbors.

TWO HARBORS, Minn. – Some of the top beer makers in Minnesota are hoping to bring a change to restrictions preventing the sale of growlers. “We are actually the only five in the entire country. Over 8,000 breweries in the country, we are the only five restricted from selling beer to-go to the consumer. That’s crazy we need to make…

The St. Louis County Sheriff’s Office Warns Residents About Scams

It is recommended if you do not recognize a phone number, do not answer.

ST. LOUIS COUNTY, Minn. – The St. Louis County Sheriff’s Office is sending a warning about a recent uptick in scam phone calls and email impacting northland residents. A handful of complaints have recently been made to the sheriff’s about the attempted scamming. Law enforcement believe the increase in calls and emails may be a result of stimulus money being…

Beargrease Silent Auction Goes Virtual Ahead of Sunday Race Start

Until February 7th you can bid on a variety of Beargrease memorabilia as well as gifts, and weekend giveaways to local resorts and venues. 

DULUTH, Minn.- Preparations continue for the John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon ahead of the start just days away. Normally the big auction and opening ceremony takes place the first week, but this year the auction is virtual. Until February 7th you can bid on a variety of Beargrease memorabilia as well as gifts, and weekend giveaways to local resorts and…

A Twin Ports Mobile Detail Shop Gets A Storefront

Detail and Dash is located at 5913 Tower Avenue.

SUPERIOR, Wis. – A  local mobile car detailing company has opened a new storefront in the Twin Ports. Detail and Dash now has a permanent place in the South End of Superior. The company offers a variety of detailing services and cars can be dropped off or picked up from your home. The owner says opening a storefront best for…

Rural Wisconsin Town Welcomes Two New Businesses

Owners say their goal is to have the coffee and cones portion of the business open by March 1st.

WASCOTT, Wisc. –  “I just like people. I like to be around people,” Wascott Coffee, Cones and Cuts Co-Owner, Lynn Anderson says. She has 27 years of experience in the cosmetology industry. “Doing hair makes people feel good,” she says. Anderson saw a need to open a salon with other options being a thirty minute commute. “I thought it would…

Sacred Heart Music Center Struggling To Survive The Pandemic

"The pandemic has really hurt Sacred Heart," said Mark Nicklawske, a member of the board of directors for Sacred Heart.

DULUTH, Minn. – Sacred Heart Music Center and many other entertainment settings were among the first to shut down at the start of the pandemic. Now it is a big challenge to bounce back from the financial struggles. “The pandemic has really hurt Sacred Heart,” said Mark Nicklawske, a member of the board of directors for Sacred Heart. Sacred Heart…

Quilt Shops Seeing Boost in Business

The shop has a variety of local kits for sale, and owners say that people have also taken up mask making with fabrics flying off the shelves.

CLOQUET, Minn. – Despite the pandemic, one quilt shop in Cloquet is doing pretty well for themselves. The Quilted Dog Quilt Shop located on highway 33 in Cloquet has seen a boost in business thanks to people taking up sewing again during the pandemic. The shop has a variety of local kits for sale, and owners say that people have…

Zeitgeist Reopens Bar For Limited Indoor Dining

"I'm so excited to have people in here to make this place feel alive again. I think it's going to be really heartwarming," said Robert Lee, the owner of the pop-up restaurant Gumbo Boi.

DULUTH, Minn. – Many bars and restaurants have struggled to stay afloat during the pandemic. Zeitgeist is now welcoming customers back to test out demand for indoor dining with plans to fully reopen in the future. The Zeitgeist Arts Café shut its doors in August as a response to the financial troubles caused by the pandemic. Now the café’s bar…

City Wants Public Feedback for The Enger Redevelopment Project

The full 10 acres planned for reconstruction runs through a portion of the Enger Park Golf Course.

DULUTH, Minn. – The City of Duluth has selected a developer to help repurpose 10 acres of land in the area of Enger Park Golf Course. Before moving forward both the city and the developer are asking for public input on the best ways to use the site. City officials say this particular site is a prime location with endless…

KYN: Sew with Me

Zoom courses are held four to five times a week. 

DULUTH, Minn. – The Sew with Me brand name has been around for almost 10 years. “We started in Stillwater and expanded from there to meet the needs of sewers throughout the state,” said Laura Maki, owner of Sew with Me. Although the Piedmont neighborhood location has been open for several years, owners say fabric right now is a hot…

North Shore Businesses Reopen, Hopeful for Additional Snowfall

During Winter, Businesses Along the North Shore Rely Heavily on Traffic Brought in by Snow Conditions

BEAVER BAY, Minn. – Businesses along the North Shore are breathing a sigh of relief after months of being shut down. However, many owners now have to deal with another obstacle – a lack of snow this winter. “We opened in August anticipating that things were going to get better, and then we got a rude surprise in November, and…

Pandemic Forces ‘Art in the Alley’ to Leave Downtown Duluth, Focus on Miller Hill Mall

The owner says the pandemic is pushing more people to the mall, and therefore her business.

DULUTH, Minn.- A longtime retailer in Duluth, Art in the Alley was forced out of their location on East Superior Street by the pandemic. The owner, now focusing her attention on sales at the Miller Hill Mall — where she says business is booming. “The thing about being a small business owner, 13 years in may we’ve been through a…

Furniture Sales High in Demand During Pandemic

The local furniture market seems to be doing well during the pandemic.

DULUTH, Minn. – The local furniture market seems to be doing well during the pandemic. Over at Hom Furniture in Hermantown, demand has surged. 2020 was a very busy year and because of COVID-19, people have been purchasing more items for the home office and upholstery furniture for those stuck at home Netflixing. “You know, you want to come home…

High Temps Bring Many to the Slopes at Spirit Mountain

DULUTH, Minn.– Meanwhile Spirit Mountain has been making snow since before Christmas and the warmer temps are now bringing lots of skiers and snowboarders out to the slopes. Officials say all the hills and the Nordic Center are now 100 percent open. This winter has been an interesting winter weather wise we started off with those November temps fairly warm….

Bakeries Celebrate National Bagel Day

It's National Bagel Day and some Northland bakeries are celebrating the baked treat.

DULUTH, Minn. – It’s National Bagel Day and some Northland bakeries are celebrating the baked treat. Over at Positively Third Street Bakery, the bagel is held in high distinction and is made fresh every day. “It adds more flavor to the community instead of just having big box stores,” said Kathryn Elliott, a baker at the bakery. “You’re able to…

Opening Week At Great Lakes Aquarium Brings Strong Turnout

The aquarium is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily.

DULUTH, Minn. – The Great Lakes Aquarium reopened to the public this week after being shutdown due to state guidelines to prevent the spread of the COVID-19. During the shutdown, aquarium staff have been polishing up exhibits and making sure safety protocols were up to date in order to prepare for the reopening. Just in the last few days of…

Animal Allies Needs Help Paying For Heart Surgeries For Two Young Pups

The surgeries are estimated to cost $8,000.

DULUTH, Minn. – Animal Allies in Duluth is asking for some community support. A pair of recently rescued pups both need a pricey operation to help save their lives. Animal Allies is looking for donations to pay for the surgeries. Gus and Precious are two dogs waiting to have a life-saving procedure. Animal Allies is hoping community members can help…

A New Pop-Up Restaurant Set To Open At Zeitgeist

Hotbox Duluth is expected to open for takeout on January 27th.

DULUTH, Minn. – Hotbox Duluth has called Zeitgeist a home since January 27th. “Right now we’ll just to to-goes and try to give people a good time,” HotBox Duluth Owner, Rob Abrahamson says. The restaurant has a nostalgic, throwback feel. “We’re going to elevate the food a little bit. Like the term that we came up with at home is…

Antique Stores Experience Growth in Traffic During Pandemic

Antique stores throughout the Northland are experiencing an increase in demand.

SUPERIOR, Wis. – Antique stores throughout the Northland are experiencing an increase in demand. At Allouez Antiques in Superior, management says they’ve had their best sales in more than five years. They believe it’s because people want to get rekindled more with their past especially during the pandemic. “Nice to just kind of walk through and reminisce,” said Curtis Zamzow,…