We’re excited to be a sponsor of the Montana Multi-Cultural Fair that will be held on the 400 block of Central Avenue in Downtown Great Falls on August 18th.
GFDA’s Top 10
Here is our Top 18 for this week celebrating work and successes to grow and strengthen the Great Falls regional economy — Montana’s Golden Triangle. And, sharing business resources and skill-building opportunities to empower your success.
1) The Rib & Chop House this week announced their newest location in Downtown Great Falls, Montana! Their new location will be situated on the ground floor of the remodeled 1914 Wells Fargo building on 1st Ave. North. The restaurant will feature 225 seats and a 40 seat outdoor patio. We’re excited to welcome the Rib & Chop House community into Downtown Great Falls. Head over to KRTV to read more about the project and hear from the CEO of Rib & Chop House. Another new restaurant, La Cocina Mexican, is opening on Fox Farm Road; see The Electric.
2) We expect to soon launch a new low interest loan participation product in partnership with the Montana Department of Commerce that will provide 50/50 loan participations with your bank or credit union. These funds are limited and will be put to work very quickly to help our economy recover and come back stronger than ever. If you have a business startup or expansion planned that could benefit from a loan participation, contact Jill Kohles at JKohles@GrowGreatFalls.org.
3) Farm Power Malt in Power recently broke ground on their new facility. This new facility will focus on creating its own American Single Malt that is created from grain grown right on the 105 year old family farm in Power. Once the facility is complete it will house a distillery, bottling line, and tasting room. Farm Power Malt provides high quality malt to breweries across Montana and beyond.
4) Met with a company based that spun off from MIT. They are an aerospace/defense contractor creating shared situational awareness applications and hardware. They have plans to expand an engineering team in Great Falls Montana. Watch for more announcements in this industry sector!
5) Our Announcement of the Week features Lofts at the Station, a five-story apartment building connected to the Milwaukee Station in Great Falls. Lofts at the Station will offer city life perks and upscale living steps away from the Missouri River and Trail. This development is a great step forward for the Great Falls region!
6) Northwest Drywall and Roofing Supply will be moving to their new location 1800 Vaughn Rd. Great Fall on Aug 1st. We invite everyone to come out to our open house on the Aug 17th. Lunch for the first 100 customs with several door prize drawling available. A Family Dollar/Dollar Tree combo store is scheduled to open in Choteau on August 11th; see Choteau Acantha. The Missouri River Medical Center and the Benton Medical Clinic cut the ribbon on their new 4,500 square foot facility; see KRTV.
7) Why do entrepreneurs participate in peer-to-peer roundtables? Because there is no substitute for hearing about the struggles of others at a similar stage of business. We have received 8 applications for our new PeerSpectives roundtable for second stage companies, but need 2-4 more. If your company is second stage, this structured and confidential just-in-time-learning opportunity helps navigate the pitfalls of operating a growing business. Contact Jason at JNitschke@GrowGreatFalls.org to complete a participant application.
8) The Sun River Watershed Group won a $1.7 million grant from the U.S. Department of the Interior to make improvements on Muddy Creek, a tributary of the Sun River. See News Release for more details.
9) Jake and Jolene helped facilitate a pre-project planning meeting with a housing developer and the Great Falls City Planning and Development department. We always recommend that developers engage with the City early and often so that projects move along smoothly. If you would like to discuss your upcoming project, you can reach the Planning Department directly at (406) 455-8430 or reach out to Jake Clark to make an introduction at Jake@GrowGreatFalls.org.
10) The Montana Manufacturing Extension Center is offering some great workshops: Lean 101: Lean Lego on August 17th in Missoula; Demystifying Cybersecurity for Small Business live webinar on August 3rd; FSPCA Preventive Controls for Human Food (offered by TechHelp) at the University of Idaho in Post Falls on August 15-17; a CISA Region 8 Critical Manufacturing Sector Security Roundtable in Billings on August 30; and free Value-Added Product Sales Under the Local Food Choice Act workshops in Missoula on August 18, in Kalispell on August 19, and in Great Falls on September 30.
11) Do you have open government contracts? Is your SAM.gov registered due to renew in the next few months? SAM.gov continues to have issues with the transition from the DUNS Number to UEI SAM. It is recommended that businesses start early to renew their registration to keep from going inactive. If you are having trouble getting through the process, contact Shannon Clancy at SClancy@GrowGreatFalls.org for assistance.
12) The Montana Indian Equity Fund (IEF) business grant is now open and accepting applications. Members of Montana’s eight federally recognized tribes are eligible to apply for up to $14,000 of business funding. This highly competitive grant program closes August 31st. For more information on the grant visit the IEF website. If you’d like help applying for the grant or have additional questions, call or email Rich Gannon at 406-836-2078 or RGannon@GrowGreatFalls.org
13) We’re excited to announce that the US Bancorp Community Development Corporation has approved a $1 million low interest loan to GFDA to expand our available loan capital. This will enable us to move forward with providing a bridge loan for one of several new apartment developments in the works in Great Falls. Thank you US Bank!
14) As we continue our deep-dive strategic planning effort, our Health/Bioscience Steering Committee of met virtually with TrippUmbach, the consultants we retained to help us develop an Bioscience Economic Development Strategy for the Great Falls Region. We discussed their preliminary findings and potential areas that the strategy could focus on to take advantage of the region’s assets. We plan to bring TrippUmbach back to Great Falls in the fall for a daylong working session with the steering committee, partners, and GFDA investors.
15) Invest Downtown 2022 will be held on October 20th from 10 AM-Noon at The Newberry and planning is currently underway. If you know of a great Downtown businesses to highlight or if you have an opportunity that is ripe for development, please email Christian at CLeinhauser@GrowGreatFalls.org or call 406.836.0136.
16) The Biden-Harris Administration’s new Priority Programming Series is now live through the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). This monthly professional development initiative for economic development professionals nationwide trained 180 people on the topic of childcare. Jason Nitschke joined two other trainers from Texas and Connecticut, sharing best practices in advising childcare centers. This type of national exposure illustrates the quality of our efforts to support providers starting and growing. If your business wants to be part of the childcare solution, connect with Jason at JNitschke@GrowGreatFalls.org.
17) GFDA’s Small Business Navigator, Tony Peres, virtually attended the International Economic Development Council’s Entrepreneurial & Small Business Development Strategies Course this week. The knowledge and proven strategies learned in this course will be put to work right here in the golden triangle to assist entrepreneur/startup businesses and current small businesses achieve and find success. For assistance with your small business or small business idea please reach out to Tony Peres at 406-750-2099 or Tony@GrowGreatFalls.org.
18) The continued support we get from the community is paramount. They choose to invest their dollars into growing our economy. Recent investments include: Pacesetter Division—Eagle Beverage and Great Falls College MSU. These and other investors are actively helping to bring more opportunities to the region. If you want to join the team that is growing Great Falls, contact Investment Director Jenn Gallmeier at 406-781-9499 or Jenn@GrowGreatFalls.org.
President & CEO