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Williston Economic Development
March 3, 2017

1 Million Cups Williston draws Big Crowd


About 50 people gathered for the first 1 Million Cups Williston meeting. Pictured clockwise is the coffee (and pastries) table provided by the Smiling Moose Deli; a large crowd situated in the Teton Lounge on the WSC campus; Karissa Kjos, 1 Million Cups social media organizer; and Brandy LaDue, 1 Million Cups emcee. Williston Economic Development


There was hardly an open seat at Williston's  first 1 Million Cups session. The program launched five years ago in one community and has spread to 112 communities nationwide in the time since. "Your presenters are going to be new businesses that are five years and younger. They'll get up and talk about the process and the ideas that they had. Maybe some of the challenges that they had. And the hope is that we'll have entrepreneurs in the crowd that can take that discussion and build from there," says Shawn Wenko, executive director of Williston Economic Development. Read More   KUMV-TV: 1 Million Cups supports Entrepreneurship
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Williston gets Caffeinated at 1 Million Cups

Williston Herald
by Melissa Krause

The 1 Million Cups program allows startups to discuss their business (Tavish Vestal, owner/president of Arista Containers at left) and community members to provide feedback and questions. Williston Economic Development


Gauging from the unexpectedly high turnout at Williston's first 1 Million Cups event on Wednesday, caffeine looks to be the catalyst that will drive Williston's entrepreneurial community to grow. One Million Cups is a national initiative designed to provide a platform for something entrepreneurs want - a place to share their ideas, and a venue for feedback, guidance and support. The free, monthly gathering is intended to help build startup companies, and in a rapidly growing community, it's necessary. Read More

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Vanity Stores begin Liquidation Sale Today

Williston Herald
by Melissa Krause

The Vanity store in Downtown Williston will be going out of business soon.
The Williston Vanity location is expected to shut its doors by late March along with 140 stores nationwide after the Fargo-based company filed for bankruptcy on Wednesday.Vanity Shop of Grand Forks Inc. is seeking Chapter 11 protection, according to documents filed in the District of North Dakota U.S. Bankruptcy Court. "Unfortunately, all of our Vanity stores will be closing," Vanity CEO and President Mickey Quinn said to the Williston Herald on Thursday. "The liquidation sale will begin (Friday) and we're estimating that we will be operating through the end March approximately. Every store will be a little bit different. It's based on how quickly the inventory sells at each location." Read More

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Wenko releases Statement on Vanity Closing

Williston Economic Development

Downtown Williston expects to see some changes this summer as some businesses close or relocate and others open or expand. Williston Economic Development
Shawn Wenko, Executive Director of Williston Economic Development, issued the following statement after Vanity announced it is closing all of its stores: 
By now, you have probably heard in the news that Fargo-based clothing retailer Vanity will be closing all of its stores; including Williston.  Retail as a whole is facing a dramatic shift in the way it does business as online sales continue to increase, consumer preferences are changing, and the brick and mortar model is undergoing a facelift.  In Williston, the news of the closure is especially disappointing as Vanity remains a popular store for our residents and a staple piece of Downtown Williston.  In the coming weeks, my office will work diligently with the building's owners and city stakeholders towards finding a suitable tenant to fill the void.  With every challenge there arises an opportunity and Williston presents a lot of opportunity.

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Letter: Expect Good Things from ND's Oil Industry in 2017

Grand Forks Herald
Letter to the Editor
Kevin Black, president of Creedence Energy Services

Kevin Black, president of Creedence Energy Services in Minot. Minot Daily News Photo/Jill Schramm
North Dakotans should know that 2017 looks to be a promising year in the state's oil industry. With oil prices hovering above $50 per barrel, investment budgets are rising across almost every company, and this price point attracts new drilling rigs and the hiring of frac crews. The state is forecasted to drill more wells in 2017 than 2016, and the inventory of drilled-but-uncompleted wells is likely to shrink. Thus, production is positioned to increase. Read More

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Becker named GM/CEO of NCC

News Release

Ray native, Jeremy Becker, has been named new GM/CEO at NCC.
The Northwest Communications Cooperative Board of Directors has announced the appointment of Jeremy Becker as its new GM/CEO. Becker assumed responsibilities on February 20th. Becker has been involved with the industry since 1997 and has spent the past 11 years at SRT. Becker is a graduate of Minot State University and Bismarck State College where he earned degrees in business and electronics. He is originally from Ray. He and his wife, Krista, and two sons, Jace and Kyle, are planning a move to Ray later this year.

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Williston Boutique gives back to Community

by Brooke Williams

MODE gives 20 percent of its sales two weeks per month to qualifying nonprofit organizations.
It  might be common to hear the phrase Shop Till You Drop. But this week, many customers at Mode in Williston will be shopping for a cause. "It's a great way to give back to the community for the community supporting us. And so, I have this strong philosophy that it's everyone's job to make Williston great. So if it's just a little bit of us giving back, I think in turn the  community will give back to us as well," says Kim Wenko, co-owner of the Mode franchise in Williston. Twice a month, the business selects a local charitable organization to support. Read More
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WSC to host Career Expo March 15

News Release

The Great Northwest Education Cooperative will be hosting the 3rd annual Northwest Career Expo on March 15th at Williston State College, for 10th and 11th grade high school students in northwest North Dakota. Students will have an opportunity to learn about different career options, ask questions of the professionals, and gain a better understanding of the link between career goals and the education needed to achieve them. Read More
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Williston PD to offer Citizens' Academy April 4

News Release

Applications for the Citizens' Police Academy are due March 24. Contact Sergeant Rodney Dickerson at dickerson@ci.williston.nd.us or 701-577-1212.
The Williston Police Department is excited to announce the upcoming Citizens' Police Academy starting April 4. This is a continuing program to develop awareness, understanding and assistance of the role of law enforcement in our community. Classes will be scheduled every Tuesday night from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m., for 10 weeks. The students will have an opportunity to ride with a uniformed police officer from the Patrol Division during the academy. Read More

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WSC releases Preview of Spring Workforce Training, Community Ed Classes

Williston State College


Beginning and intermediate sewing will be offered during the spring and summer session of the community education program.

Williston State College and TrainND Northwest have released a preview of their spring and summer workforce training and community education classes. This year the lineup will feature safety, OSHA, transportation and crane training; computer and C.N.A. classes as well as a variety of community education workshops including sewing, painting, photography and babysitting boot camp.  Spring 2017 Community & Workforce Schedule

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Volunteers sought for WPRD Adopt-a-Park Program

News Release

If your organization or business is interested in the Adopt-A-Park program visit the District Office at the Williston ARC to register.
Williston Parks & Recreation would like to invite Williston Area Businesses, Civic Groups, and Volunteer Organizations to take part in our annual Adopt-A-Park Program! 
The primary purpose of this program is to assist Williston Parks and Recreation District with the assigned tasks and projects within a park in order to create a clean park environment for all to enjoy!  Tasks may include trash pickup, weeding/raking playgrounds, sweeping shelters, cleaning picnic tables, reporting vandalism, and some use of power tools (by adults only 18 years and older). Adopters can also help with special projects, such as painting and planting flowers.  Read More
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Williams County seeks Historical Photos for New Building

KEYZ Radio

Search your Grandma's attic and contribute to a new community project that future generations can enjoy. It's not the "Antiques Road Show," but it is a way for you to share old photos and memories that will illustrate the legacy of our region for years to come.  The Williams County Building Committee is searching for photos taken in Williams County to be used as art in the soon-to-be expanded County Administration Building. Read More

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Upcoming Williston Events

03/04              Legislative Forums in northwest North Dakota
Williston Regional Economic Development will host public legislative forums on March 4 in the communities of Crosby, New Town, Tioga, Watford City and Williston. March 4 Legislative Forums Agenda

03/09              Business After Hours
Mainstay Suites will host the Chamber's monthly networking social from 5:30-7:30 p.m.
03/10              Eggs & Issues
The Lignite Energy Council's Steve Van Dyke will be the guest speaker at the Chamber program held from 7:30-9 a.m. at TrainND Northwest. RSVP by 3/3 at 701-577-6000.

03/14              Williston City Commission
The commission meets the second and fourth Tuesday's of each month at 6 p.m. at City Hall. 
03/17              Shamrockin' the Bakken Taste of Williston
The Chamber's annual St. Patrick's Day event will be held from 6-10:30 p.m. at the Grand Williston Hotel and Conference Center. Tickets are on sale at the Chamber for $20 each.

03/20              Williston Planning & Zoning Commission
The commission meets the third Monday of each month at 5:30 p.m. at City Hall. Agenda

03/22              Williston Job Fair
The event will be held at the Grand Williston Hotel and Conference Center. Job Fair Flier for Job Seekers 
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