Business

Salons Reopening To Clients After Governor Gives The OK

Since closing in March, The London Rayne salon owner has had to reschedule more than 50 appointments.

DULUTH, Minn. – Salons in Minnesota have been given the green light to reopen to the public, but they must follow a few safety protocols. The executive order requires hairstylists, barbers, and their clients to wear masks. And all services are by appointment only. But some salons in Duluth are taking a few extra precautions. London Rayne Salon is using…

Duluth Bar, Restaurant Owners Surprised, Disappointed at Walz’s Outside Seating Restrictions

Different issues arise with just outside seating.

DULUTH, Minn.- Minnesota Governor Tim Walz loosened restrictions on business beginning June 1st. Bars and restaurants can open on that date with outdoor only seating, serving no more than 50 customers at a time and with employees wearing masks. “That extends to how do we find that new normal, restart Minnesota’s economy and I should say grow it from where…

Mayor Larson, Councilors To Take Pay Cuts Amid Budget Crisis

DULUTH, Minn. – Duluth Mayor Emily Larson and city councilors are taking a 10 percent voluntary pay cut through the end of the year. Larson makes roughly $97,000 a year.  Councilors make close to $14,000. While the savings won’t be significant to the overall budget shortfall of a projected $38 million on the high end this year, Council President Gary…

Spirit Mountain Closed For The Summer; City Implements Task Force To Figure Out Future

To reopen for the upcoming winter season, the city is going to have to fork over $350,000 in assistance.

DULUTH, Minn. – Financial impacts of Covid-19 are continuing to hit hard for Spirit Mountain in Duluth. The popular tourist attraction will now remain closed all the way through the end of summer. Spirit Mountain is in bad financial shape as the Covid-19 Pandemic continues to create money problems. Due to the city’s own financial issues, this time around, supporting…

DTA Looking to Increase Services

"When we go back to our higher level service we will be at 83 percent or about 48 buses."

DULUTH, Minn. – “We made significant changes to our operations and the way we do business,” Duluth Transit Authority General Manager, Phil Pumphrey says. Since March, the Duluth Transit Authority has reduced services to just 24 buses running at only 43 percent of what is normal. “When we go back to our higher level service we will be at 83…

Eveleth Bar Owner: ‘June 1st is Really the End of the Wire’

Owners of bars, restaurants, and other businesses met in Eveleth to discuss opening strategies, and share frustrations with the state's handling of things.

EVELETH, Minn.- Businesses across Minnesota are anxiously awaiting the Governor’s announcement Wednesday authorizing them to open June 1st, including up on the range in the small town of Eveleth that has a population of 3,596. “Walz opening up on the first at a capacity of 25%? That’s. Not. Enough,” said one business owner. Bar and restaurant owners in Eveleth said…

Spirit Mountain Could Stay Closed Through Summer; More Cash Needed To Reopen In Winter

DULUTH, Minn. – The financially strapped Spirit Mountain could very well remain closed through the summer because of the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.  And Spirit Mountain officials say the only way to open back up this winter is if the cash-strapped city of Duluth hands over $350,000 before winter revenue at the Mountain starts rolling in again. This information…

A New Voucher Program Is Helping To Give Restaurants A Financial Boost

Vouchers can be used at any of the 40 participating restaurants. They expire on August 31st.

DULUTH, Minn. – Restaurants in the Northland are still feeling financial setbacks from the Coronavirus Pandemic. That’s why a new voucher program has now launched to help boost the local economy as businesses are still trying to rebuild operations, while they wait to reopen indoor dining to the public. Strong Northland is a collaborative effort to help economically restore local…

Miller Hill Mall Businesses React to Reopening

The Miller Hill Mall opened back up on Monday after being shut down for over two months. 

DULUTH, Minn.-The Miller Hill Mall opened back up on Monday after being shut down for over two months. “It was kind of sporadic. I think a lot of people were kind of seeing what’s open, who’s here and what’s going on,” Apricot Lane Duluth Owner, Wendy Meyers says. For local businesses like Apricot Lane Duluth, it was a breath of…

Boating Businesses Ready to Set Sail with Modifications for Safety

Vista Star and Pontoons out of Pier B are changing their operations to ensure passengers have a safe nautical experience.

DULUTH, Minn.- As summer gets closer, Duluth begins to shine as a waterfront destination again. After looking at summer with uncertainty, boating rental and tour services are excited to say they can provide people that gateway to the big blue lake. The Vista Fleet is missing the big Memorial Day opening, but owner Justin Steinbach expects to be open by…

Skywalk Re-Opens after Two-Month Closure, Businesses Hope for Foot Traffic Again

Frame Corner and Gallery looks to recover as long as people come in to shop.

DULUTH, Minn.- Downtown Duluth is reconnected once again with the Skywalk back open after a two-month closure due to COVID-19. The Skywalk was noticibly emptier than usual, but that didn’t stop businesses from swinging their doors open. Frame Corner and Gallery in the Holiday Center has been selling custom frames through curbside pickup but owner Sara Sarvella said she’s looking…

A Local Nursery School Is Offering A Summer Camp For School-Aged Children

The program is expected to begin this Wednesday and will run through the end of the summer.

DULUTH, Minn. – Many summer camps around the Northland are already choosing not open for the season to prevent the potential spread of the coronavirus. Fortunately, University Nursery School isn’t one of them canceling summer programming. University Nursery School’s location, in the Harbor Highlands community, has been transformed to offer a full-time summer program. It can accommodate up to 30…

Minnesota Power Plaza to Be Renovated This Summer

Plans include added seating, gardens, and solar lighting.

SUPERIOR, Wis.- More changes could be coming to Downtown Duluth this summer as the Allete Company is working to renovate Minnesota Power Plaza at the corner of Lake Avenue and Superior Street. Staff with Allete said the plaza will include increased accessibility including a sidewalk into Canal Park. They’re also looking to put in more seating, shading, gardens, and solar…

Portland Malt Shoppe Open for the Season

Customers say they're excited to taste summer again.

DULUTH, Minn.- A sign that summer is just around the corner–the popular Portland Malt Shoppe in Duluth re-opened Friday. People can once again stop in for sundaes, malts, and more frozen treats while walking the lakewalk by Fitger’s. “It’s nice to be able to support local businesses when we can. Just nice to be able to help out the community,”…

Superior Businesses Navigate Operating Safely After First Weekend Open

Douglas County officials urge businesses to follow guidelines, and they may shut them down if they receive complaints.

SUPERIOR, Wis.- It was the first weekend that businesses in Wisconsin were suddenly given the green light to open after the state’s stay at home order was thrown out by the Wisconsin Supreme Court–now business owners in Superior say it’s time to figure out how to open safely. The jingle of the door opening is a sound not heard at…

Scrubs Direct Moves to New Location

A local medical uniforms store is moving into a bigger location as business continues to grow

DULUTH, Minn. – A local medical uniforms store is moving into a bigger location as the business continues to grow. Scrubs Direct moved into the Duluth area about two years ago. The owners already had stores in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, and Woodbury, Minnesota. They tell us their Duluth store in the Burning Tree Plaza has done so well, they’ve run…

Payroll Protection Loan Program Helps Small Businesses Continue To Thrive

Bremer has already approved nearly 7,000 applications from small businesses amounting to more than $1 billion.

DULUTH, Minn. – As part of the CARES Act, the Payroll Protection Loan program was developed to help small businesses keep their workforce employed during the pandemic. Minnesota-based Bremer Bank is one of many bank institutions authorized to issue those loans. Bank-wide, including branches in Duluth, Wisconsin, and North Dakota, Bremer has already approved nearly 7,000 applications from small businesses…

Some Superior Bars and Restaurants Reopen to Public

Jimmy's Saloon and Gronk's Bar and Grill speak out about being open after the shutdown

SUPERIOR, Wis. – Some Wisconsin bars and restaurants are legally back open for business for the first time in nearly two months after the state supreme court threw out Gov. Evers’ Safer at Home Order. Superior bars and restaurants were gearing up to open on May 26th, when Safer at Home was set to expire. But many of them opened…

Maurices Lays Off 39 Employees

DULUTH, Minn. — Maurices has had to make cuts on the corporate level due to the pandemic. On April 27th, the company let go of 39 employees who worked in the Duluth office, the Design Center team in New York, and the field leadership team. A spokesperson with the company added that all employees who were laid off were offered…

Superior Bars React to Safer-at-Home Order Struck Down by Wisconsin Supreme Court

The order, as well as the six-day injunction, were rejected, leaving businesses free to open immediately.

SUPERIOR, Wis.- Just as quickly as some say it started, Wisconsin’s safer-at-home order is, for now, finished–struck down by the State Supreme Court. Businesses statewide, including bars and restaurants, now have the green light to “open immediately” according to a social media post by the Tavern League of Wisconsin. “Come on in!” said Cory Gatzke, triumphantly throwing open the shades…

St. Louis County Projects Budget Shortfall, No Layoffs So Far

The County is also waiving late fees for property owners who apply for an extension to July.

DULUTH, Minn.- COVID-19 has dealt a financial blow to St. Louis County in the form of a projected budget shortall. According to County Auditor Nancy Nilsen, the budget shortfall is expected to be at least $6 million. She said her office is not looking at layoffs or furloughs, but instead plan to save money with a hiring freeze leaving about…

Gary-New Duluth Businesses Impacted by COVID-19 Shutdown

Triple J Service Center and Family Dollar talk about how the pandemic has affected stores

DULUTH, Minn. – Businesses have struggled across the Northland during the pandemic. Some businesses have been closed for nearly two months under Minnesota’s Stay at Home Order. Other shops have remained opened during the pandemic. While some of those stores have seen an increase in business, for others it’s been much slower. Triple J Service Center has struggled during the…

Ashley Grimm Lands DFL Endorsement For St. Louis County Board

Ashley Grimm DULUTH, Minn. – Ashley Grimm has landed the DFL endorsement for St. Louis County Commissioner Dist. 3, which represents the western portion of Duluth. Grimm received more than 69 percent of the votes cast by convention delegates at the first-ever electronic virtual convention.  This came after a 2-week balloting period. DFL competitor Noah Hobbs received the remaining votes….

Bailey Builds Allows Customers to Shop from their Cars

Car-side shopping is in addition to curbside pickup and an online store.

DULUTH, Minn.- An arts studio and store on Grand Avenue in Duluth is changing the way they bring handmade gifts to customers. You can now shop Bailey Builds from your car. One of the staff members will meet you at your vehicle with a mask and gloves to find out what you’re looking for, come back with gift ideas, and…

Some Duluth Restaurants, Hotels Look Toward Uncertain Future

Hotels and restaurants try to stay afloat after decreased business for this long.

DULUTH, Minn.- As many local businesses in the hospitality industry make adjustments to continue staying open, for others that might not be an option. Dubh Linn Brew Pub in Downtown Duluth is changing their business model, offering delivery of growlers of their in-house brew, cider, wine, and food five days a week from 4pm-8pm. “People are looking for a reason,…

Lilac Hill Preps to Open Second Greenhouse

DULUTH, Minn.– Mother’s Day is right around the corner and greenhouses are opening back up just in time. Lilac Hill Greenhouse is getting ready to open a pop-up store in the parking at Super One on West Arrowhead Road in Duluth. The soft opening is tomorrow. 200 hanging baskets will be available along with annuals, perennials and more. The manager…

Big Top Chautauqua 2020 Season Canceled

BAYFIELD, Wis. – The 2020 summer season of entertainment and events at Big Top Chautauqua has been canceled. Big Top’s management announced Monday that they weighed countless scenarios but determined it was best to skip this season with the uncertainty surrounding the safety of large gatherings involving this pandemic. Big Top Summer 2020 Press Release There are refundable options available…

Crews Begin Removal Of Lake Avenue Steam Pipes

DULUTH, Minn. – Crews have begun removing a 100-year-old steam system on Lake Avenue during Phase 3 of the Superior Street project. With that comes the removal of pipes containing asbestos. The public is asked to stay within the marked pedestrian areas during this time. The first stage of phase three is scheduled to wrap up in July. Categories: Business,…

White Spruce Market Seeing Spike in Business Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

The Locally Handcrafted Gift Boxes Are Proving to be Popular Gifts As Stay-At-Home Orders Continue

DULUTH, Minn. – Mother’s Day is less than a week away, and with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, it’ll most definitely look a little different this year. The ‘new normal’ isn’t stopping the tradition of gift-giving, however. Locally handcrafted White Spruce Market is seeing a big spike in business as consumers look to stay connected by gift-giving.  Bailey Aro Hutchence is…

Duluth Chamber CEO Adapts Advocacy For Businesses Through Pandemic

DULUTH, Minn. — The Duluth Area Chamber of Commerce is looking at all types of ways to connect with local businesses right now to help them through the pandemic’s financial crisis. Chamber President and CEO David Ross says he’s seen an increase in small businesses looking for guidance with grant and loan applications, among other needs. His team is in…

Duluth Stores Prepare for Curbside Pickup to Start May 4th

Zenith Bookstore and Dungeon's End Game Store among many statewide businesses to offer curbside pickup

DULUTH, Minn. – Retail and other non-essential businesses in Minnesota can reopen for curbside pickup and delivery starting May 4th if they take certain precautions. Many Minnesota businesses have been closed for more than a month under the state’s Stay at Home Order. While those shops still can’t open their doors to customers for at least two more weeks, they’re…

Northland Foundation, Area Partners Raise $2 Million for COVID-19 Financial Relief

Relief Funds Will Be Used For Multiple Programs, Local Businesses in Northeastern Minnesota

DULUTH, Minn. – The Northland Foundation has been serving seven counties including five tribal nations in Northeastern Minnesota since the 1980s. The foundation strives to economically support residents and businesses in the region, especially during financially difficult times. “We’re doing our best to connect our businesses and our people with those resources both in our region, in the state, and…

Silver Bay Grocery Store Offering Curbside Service to Elderly Residents

With Help From North Shore Area Partners, More Than a Dozen Silver Bay Residents Utilize the Service

SILVER BAY, Minn. – We’ve heard it before, coronavirus doesn’t discriminate. Although no cases have been reported in Lake County thus far, residents remain cautious, practicing social distancing and limiting trips out of the home. Many small-town residents are stepping up to alleviate stress while helping those in need. “I spend an hour in here just talking. It takes me…

Some Superior Businesses Relieved with Governor’s Loosened Restrictions

Gov. Evers's new emergency order allows no contact business.

  SUPERIOR, Wis.- Business owners in Superior are slowly getting back to as close to normal as they can be after Governor Tony Evers announced some non-essential businesses can open in a limited capacity. “It’ll be the new normal, whatever that is,” said Kat Senn. Under Emergency Order 34, certain non-essential businesses are allowed to start resuming business only through…

Coronavirus Pandemic Forces Closure of Lake County News Chronicle

DULUTH, Minn. – The economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic is shutting down one of the Duluth News Tribune’s sister newspapers up the north shore. The Lake County News Chronicle, which was founded in 1974, will publish its final issue on May 22. The announcement was made Wednesday evening on the publication’s website. The closure comes as newspapers, televisions stations…

‘Superior Gift Card Club’ Raises $50K For Local Businesses

SUPERIOR, Wis. – A Facebook gift card club in Superior designed to help local businesses during the pandemic has reached a big milestone. The club has raised $50,000 so far through daily online raffles. Councilors Craig Sutherland and Brent Fennessey came up with the idea just five weeks ago, and they never thought they’d be able to give this much…

Superior Mayor, Chamber CEO Talk Pandemic’s Financial Crisis

SUPERIOR, Wis. – Superior Mayor Jim Paine told FOX 21’s Dan Hanger on Tuesday why he doesn’t expect to furlough or lay off any employees during the pandemic, unlike the city of Duluth.  And we’re learning more about how the hit to the tourism industry is affecting the Superior-Douglas County Area Chamber of Commerce like it has never been hit…

Trump Set to Order Meatpacking to Stay Open As Plants Deal with Staff Shortage

If this continues, experts say it could drastially effect the nation's food supply chain.

SUPERIOR, Wis. On Tuesday President Donald Trump said he will sign a five-page executive order declaring meat processing plants critical infrastructure, ordering them to remain open–as facilities are dealing with a shortage of workers and an increase in demand. “We always work with the farmers,” Trump said. “There’s plenty of supplies, as you know this, plenty of supply, it’s distribution…

Duluth Council, Mayor’s Administration Discuss Budget Shortfall, Layoffs

City Council shared their thoughts and questions while the Mayor and her team outlined plans.

DULUTH, Minn.- Mayor Emily Larson made a rare appearance at Duluth’s virtual City Council meeting to give councilors a detailed outline, and uncertain look towards a grim future after she announced the city’s budget shortfall–which was unveiled to now be about $20.7-$38.2 million. According to city officials, due to the city’s “strong mayor system,” Larson can make any decisions she…

Superior Mayor Jim Paine: No Layoffs, Furloughs Expected During Pandemic

SUPERIOR, Wis. – Superior Mayor Jim Paine says he has no plans to lay off or furlough any employees right now or in the future. Mayor Paine told FOX 21 Monday while times are uncertain and he can’t fully predict impacts to the city’s finances, he does believe the city of Superior is fiscally healthy to withstand pressures from the…

Business Blooming for Duluth Flower Farm’s Mini Farmer’s Market

The florist is seeing success with his socially distant farmer's market on his parents' Proctor farm.

PROCTOR, Minn.- A local flower shop owner is seeing some success after adapting his business model during this pandemic. Duluth Flower Farm has been set up with a simple table outside the family’s farm in Proctor–and it’s been busy–selling out of flowers and products like homemade salsa. The owner said this new approach has done wonders while his store is…

Lake Superior Art Glass Offers Live Glass Blowing Demos Online During Shutdown

DULUTH, Minn. – A Duluth glass studio is finding creative ways to keep the community engaged in their artistic process during the shutdown. Every Monday through Friday at 10:00 a.m., Lake Superior Art Glass does a live glass-blowing demo on Facebook. Owner Dan Neff tells us the demo gives customers a behind-the-scenes look at how the shop’s art is created….

Video Vision Provides Curbside Movie Rental in Superior

Twin Ports' last video rental store open for curbside pickup

SUPERIOR, Wis. – The Twin Ports’ only remaining video rental store is open again for curbside pickup. Video Vision in Superior has been closed for the last month under Wisconsin’s ‘Safer at Home’ order. But now, the store that’s the last of its kind in the city is renting movies once again. Customers can order videos over the phone, pull…

Superior-Douglas Co. Chamber CEO Furloughs Self, Staff

It's a move the chamber hasn't made before in its 137-year history.

SUPERIOR, Wis. – The Superior-Douglas County Area Chamber of Commerce has temporarily laid off most of its staff because of the financial strain from the pandemic. It’s a move the chamber hasn’t made before in its 137-year history. Chamber President/CEO Taylor Pedersen told FOX 21 the decision to furlough was tough but a responsible one so his team can be strong…

Nearly 50 Full-Time City of Duluth Employees Laid Off

This latest round of layoffs comes after 45 temporary/seasonal employees were also laid off.

DULUTH, Minn. — The city of Duluth is laying off nearly 50 more employees on top of dozens of temporary and seasonal positions because of a massive projected budget shortfall. A spokesperson for Mayor Emily Larson said Wednesday that 49 full-time employees are affected in this latest round of layoffs. The positions range from housing inspectors within the fire department…

Duluth City Council President, Tourist Attractions Prepare for Tough Times After Budget Shortfall

So far businesses are allowed to open early May, but there's weeks of preparation involved.

DULUTH, Minn.- After Mayor Emily Larson’s announcement of the City’s tremendous 2020 budget shortfall due to COVID-19, tourist attractions navigate uncertain times through the most important dollar-making months Duluth sees all year. While Governor Walz’s stay-at-home order right now says businesses can start opening up the first week of May, owners of attractions told us they can’t just throw open…