The development at the former Gander Mountain, now Gander Outdoors, site in Baxter is coming into focus.
The Thrifty White Pharmacy's exterior appears complete as work continues on the interior of the new store on the corner of Washington and North Second streets in Brainerd. Thrifty White is opening Nov. 12 and plans a grand opening Nov. 12-17. As that construction work ends, projects are underway or just beginning. And one is still a bit of a mystery.
Want to have input on what Brainerd will be like in the future? This weekend marks last opportunity to take part in an community survey on imagining the future of Brainerd. "The city of Brainerd is looking to its residents to help craft a vision for 2035. Anyone with a passion for Brainerd's future is encouraged to participate. The following survey will focus on the community character and the livability of the city," the city reported.
PINE RIVER—Long before sustainable living was a catch phrase and podcast topic, it was part of Paul and Lynn Hunt's investment in resiliency. Their resilient living campus in Pine River focuses on energy conservation and reducing greenhouse gases, efficient building design and ways to help people use resources so they can live well during economic booms and busts.
Employees are in short supply and that's not going to change anytime soon, forcing employers to be more flexible in order to keep workers and find ways to automate where possible.
There were those who wondered if a second $50,000 prize to get a startup or a business expansion off the ground amounted to the idea that lightning never strikes twice in the same spot. Good thing for Brainerd lakes area entrepreneurs the National Weather Service already debunked the myth by noting lightning often strikes the same place—repeatedly. When the idea arose to tap into the energy created with the first Destination Downtown Business Challenge with a sequel, there were skeptics.
Ordering groceries just got a lot easier. And the appeal should cover a wide range of people from parents of young children, busy single workers and older retirees. Instacart arrived in the lakes region this summer. It allows customers to shop Cub Foods and Costco without ever leaving their couch. Online orders may be placed from a smartphone, tablet or computer. I tried it in August to get an idea how the service would work.
Life is busy. And the number of online options in the lakes area presenting time-saving convenience is growing, and perhaps offering a way to reduce at least one area of stress. Instacart, (which is featured in Tech Savvy this week) offers grocery delivery from Costco and Cub Foods and is one of the new offerings as of this summer. Another new service that started last week is Food Dudes. Food Dudes offers delivery from certain restaurants in the community that don't have that delivery feature on their own.
Small and mid-size business owners in retail and service industries and manufacturers in the lakes area agree the economy is cooking. While motorists may remember the summer of 2018 for its challenges with major road arteries closed for construction, business owners may think of it as an indicator of investment confidence, job creation and record revenue.
BAXTER—Customers will be able to order groceries online and pick them up at Walmart in the future. The Baxter City Council approved a conditional use permit for the grocery pickup and a variance to allow a drive-thru lane between Walmart and Isle Drive. The issue was on the city's agenda previously, but pulled from consideration.