Hulett: Moorhead Business Association builds business strength
"The Moorhead Business Association will become even stronger as its membership continues to expand," writes InForum columnist Mike Hulett. "In turn, it provides essential support for the growth and vitality of the crown jewel among regional cities: Moorhead."
Created a decade ago by a forward-looking group of business owners and civic leaders, the Moorhead Business Association has grown to over 350 members dedicated to making Moorhead the ideal location to establish a business.
The large 56560 graphic on a store downtown is symbolic of the dedication of Moorhead business owners to “live local” and “do more in Moorhead.” Their goal is to increase Moorhead business visibility and do so by providing advocacy and networking opportunities that reinforce the vitality of Moorhead. They are creating an inviting landscape where new businesses can join in on the success.
Executive Director Sheri Larson proudly lists MBA’s significant involvement in a wide array of Moorhead activities. The New American Job Fair connects community newcomers with good employment opportunities. The MBA marathon water station annually demonstrates “Moorhead Proud” to thousands of runners as they cross the bridge into the city. Moorhead Cruise Night is a monthly summer gathering of motor vehicle enthusiasts at the Moorhead Center Mall featuring food, music and a traditional, family-friendly atmosphere. Frostival brings together the Convention and Visitors Bureau, Moorhead Parks and Recreation and MBA for a wide range of fun winter activities, including snow sculptures carved by nationally-known artists.
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Another MBA event that has gained huge popularity is the annual “Do More in Moorhead Bridge Bash” that welcomes students (future business owners!) at the start of the school year. Held at the Viking Ship Park and the Hjemkomst Center, students, moms, dads, grandparents, visitors and children of all ages are treated to live music, over 30 vendors and an array of fun activities that bring everyone together in a safe, friendly, warm, welcome-home environment.
Back in the day, Minnesota State University Moorhead hosted an Independence Day campus celebration with food, games and patriotic speeches. Former MSUM President Roland Barden dressed as Uncle Sam to warmly greet thousands of visitors. In the evening, the largest regional fireworks display took place at the football stadium. People came to Moorhead from miles around.
When that traditional Fourth of July event was no longer presented, in stepped the Moorhead Business Association with “Moorhead Proud 5656 OOH&AAH,” a huge fireworks display presented by dedicated MBA volunteers and generous business sponsors. To provide thousands of spectators more viewing options, MBA has moved the fireworks to an open area north of I-94 on the east edge of Moorhead. Three VIP parking lots are available along with family games and food vendors, if you choose, but the display can easily be watched from almost any part of east Moorhead. Thanks to MBA members, a great Moorhead tradition continues!
Now well established as the engine of business growth in Moorhead, MBA holds weekly Let's Talk Business events at the Moorhead American Legion that feature creative guest speakers, important business networking opportunities and significant insights for success. The Moorhead Business Association will become even stronger as its membership continues to expand. In turn, it provides essential support for the growth and vitality of the crown jewel among regional cities: Moorhead.
Hulett is a regular contributor to the opinion page.
This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Forum's editorial board nor Forum ownership.