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Local Business

Cooper’s big break

Dan Dix, general manager of NEW Cooperative, admittedly wasn’t sure what the name of the little town off in the distance was when he eyed an existing Morton shed along Iowa Highway 4 as the place from which to stake a claim on the local anhydrous ammonia market. The town was Cooper (pop. ...

Rising up

In her practice, Heidi Smith strives to help people become better versions of themselves. A tattoo of a yellow-orange phoenix that she has inked on her left forearm is a continuous reminder that people can overcome trying times in their lives. The words, “Get up & Rise” are ...

Up and running

Since March, the COVID-19 pandemic has led to the permanent closure of multiple businesses in the Fort Dodge area. But in some cases, the pandemic has led to the formation of new ones. After Fort Dodge Motors closed in October, Ajae Arndt decided to open his own auto repair ...

The HairLoft finds home downtown

Five friends who got to know each other during their time in beauty school now work together at a salon in Fort Dodge’s downtown district. Erica Trudeau-Adams and Brittany Kirsch opened The HairLoft, 14 N. 11th St., in May. “Brittany and I have worked together in the past before with ...

Bowling through a pandemic

HUMBOLDT — When Shawn Sturtz returned to school after Christmas break in 1983, he was thrilled to tell his friends what Santa brought him. It wasn’t the latest gadget or gizmo, though. In fact, it wasn’t really a toy at all. Rather, it was a place. His parents, Roger and Jackie ...

Economic impact

Koch Fertilizer’s $140 million investment in its ammonia plant east of Fort Dodge will have a ripple effect throughout the Webster County economy, according to local officials. The company announced last week its intentions to increase production capacity at the plant, 3162 200th St., ...

Assessment helps CJ Bio America start smart with tech upgrades

Editor’s note: this article is being reprinted with permission from the Iowa State University Center for Industrial Research and Service (CIRAS). A Fort Dodge feed ingredients company expects to save millions of dollars by implementing technology upgrades identified through a CIRAS Industry ...

A hidden gem

A long-standing tradition of business in the city of Fort Dodge continues on with the third generation. For over 125 years, the Kirkberg family has been offering jewelry merchandise and service in Fort Dodge and the surrounding areas. Cary Estlund and her husband Steve Estlund have owned ...

Hand crafted for the holidays

Handcrafters prepare unique and personalized items. Some do it as their full-time job, for others it is their side hustle. Regardless, local support of their businesses could make for some fun gift giving and even better gift receiving. Farm Gal Soaps HARDY — Farm Gal Soaps features ...

Back to her roots

One of Rebecca Reitmeier’s first high school jobs was working at Bloomers, a coffee shop that has been a mainstay in Fort Dodge since the early 1990s. She worked for the original owner, Michelle Elbert, before eventually working under JoAnne Peterson and her daughter, Kristen Utley, ...

Active Health Clinics celebrate 10 years

A decade after Dr. Josh Mason started his one-provider chiropractic practice in the commercial building at the intersection of Second Avenue North and North 15th Street, Active Health Chiropractic has seen a lot of expansion and change. Six months after opening in October 2010, Mason was ...

Moving on up

Golf Central, where golf season never ends, has a new location not far from its old one. The Fort Dodge business recently moved from the first floor of the Boston Center, 809 Central Ave., to the second floor. “We went from about 4,000 square feet of usable space downstairs and we ...

But first, COFFEE

Scooter’s Coffee, best known for its convenient drive-thru specialty coffee and baked-from-scratch pastries, is the newest business to open along the city’s Corridor of Commerce. Scooter’s opened a coffeehouse and drive-thru location at 2949 Fifth Ave. S., which formerly housed Taco ...

Helping others find independence

Whether it’s a wheelchair, a lift chair or something as simple as a grab bar, the goal of Wheelchair Dynamics is to help people with special needs become more independent. “We are just trying to keep them independent and improve life as best we can,” said Tim Haupert, co-owner of ...

Ready for Halloween

One of the lines Mary Rivera likes to use on customers at Party Productions is, “It won’t cost you an arm and a leg.” She says that line while she’s holding Halloween props of an arm and a leg. Rivera, who has been an employee of the party supply and rental shop for five years, ...

Burritos on the move

HUMBOLDT — Joe Alvarez will soon be taking his increasingly popular quick-serve Tex-Mex restaurant on the road to places like Algona and Fort Dodge. Alvarez, a native of Mason City, opened Burrito Mexpress in Humboldt in January of 2018. Since that time, Alvarez has built a loyal ...

Our businesses: Faiferlick Martial Arts

What is the name of your business? Faiferlick Martial Arts Where it is located? 567 S. 25th St. When was it founded? January 2013 Who are the key leaders? Justin Faiferlick, Deann Faiferlick, Kelsey Felch, Michael Faiferlick, Jeff Cibert, Andrew Birzer, Brian Walsh, Steven Merrill How ...

Under one roof

When customers would ask Chris Staley and Tim Mapel at Optic Ink about custom vinyl signs or vehicle wraps, they would direct them to Creative Signs and Graphics, owned by Maddie Lind. And when Maddie Lind, of Fort Dodge, was asked about custom T-shirts, she would direct them to Optic Ink. ...

Our businesses: Peoples Credit Union

What is the name of your business? Peoples Credit Union Where it is located? Home office is in Webster City, with branches in Fort Dodge and Lehigh When was it founded? We first established roots in Webster City on May 25, 1962 operating out of the home of Don and Colleen Follett and ...

Still standing

Safety fencing surrounds most of Crossroads Mall this September as demolition on part of the structure is set to begin soon. The lettering of JC Penney, once a popular anchor store of the mall, has faded from the brick exterior. It’s a sign of the state of malls across the country — ...