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January, 2022 Newsletter
Promoting prosperity, growth, and our way of life in the lower Oahe region.

Hello [First Name],


This is the Pierre Area Chamber of Commerce, Pierre Convention & Visitors Bureau, and Pierre Economic Development Corporation's January 2022 E-Newsletter.


Take a few moments to enjoy an update from the Chamber as we promote prosperity, growth, and our way of life in the lower Oahe region.


-Your Pierre Area Chamber of Commerce Staff

CEO's Report
Sara Rankin, Chamber Chief Executive Officer

Happy New Year! I have always been a fan of New Year’s; a time to reflect on the past twelve months with enthusiasm for the blank canvas and new opportunities a fresh year provides. 2022 will be the beginning of my first full year at the helm of the Chamber, adding another element of excitement to the new year for me. The Chamber team has been discussing and planning the contents of 2022 since my first day. We are continuously working to keep the Chamber relevant and provide excellent services and value to our members.


This year, albeit still a bit off, has been a year of recovery. Our tourism numbers were up, our hoteliers saw numbers that rivaled, if not surpassed, 2019. Restaurants, although battling a workforce shortage, have continued to provide exceptional service to patrons eager to dine with family and friends once again, and area retailers were excited to see customers filling their stores. Thank you to those of you who have continued to stay Loyal2Local by supporting the Pierre/Fort Pierre retailers, service providers and Chamber members all year long.


The new year will hold some exciting things; new events, added programs, the reorganization of Chamber committees, and a quest toward accreditation. Throughout these first few months I have had the pleasure of meeting and working with so many of you, and I am looking forward to meeting many more.


As we move into the new year, remember, you are the driving force behind the Chamber. Please let us know how can best serve you in 2022 and beyond.


Best wishes for a happy and healthy new year!

Your Business Fuels You - So Why Are You So Tired?
Chamber Blog Post

The Pierre Area Chamber of Commerce will be closed on Friday, December 31 to ring in the New Year with our loved ones. Happy holidays to you and yours!

Pierre Mayor Steve Harding's Report

Whenever a new year is nearing, I like to set aside some time just to try to recall the whole year. Every time I do this exercise, I think how soon we forget. Each year brings big challenges, big opportunities, and a series of accomplishments.


Here’s a look at some of the big projects that are pushing Pierre forward.


Our skyline along the western side of Pierre has changed a number of times. This is thanks to the large dueling crane operations along the Missouri River.


In March, ground was broken on the Missouri River Bridge project. This project is driven by the S.D. Dept. of Transportation, but nonetheless it will have a major impact on Pierre. I like to think that the finished project will provide a beautiful new welcome mat to the capitol city. At last check, that welcome mat is expected to be complete in 2024. As part of this effort, the city will build a plaza adjacent to the new bridge.


In 2021, major strides were made on the city’s drinking water treatment facility. Nearly all of the exterior work at the treatment facility is complete. Operations have primarily moved to piping and electrical work on the inside of the structure. But for me, the most awesome piece of the project this year was the floating and subsequent sinking of the 714 foot intake pipe into the Missouri River! 


This fall, we also flushed more than 100 miles of water main to clear the pipes for the new treated water. If all stays on track, by this fall, you’ll have treated water flowing to your faucet.


The silhouette is also changing on the east side of the community. We’re in the midst of $15 million modernization project at the wastewater treatment plant. It will change how wastewater is treated from the time it is received at the plant until it is fully treated and discharged. A number of buildings will be decommissioned during the process and eventually demolished. The project is expected to be complete in early 2023.


If you cruse past Griffin Park, the changes are very apparent! Earthwork is well underway for the City’s new outdoor pool. We have removed about 15,000 yards of poor soil and brought in another 20,000 yards to replace that soil and elevate the pool out of the water table. If all goes according to plan, the pool will be done in time for the 2023 swim season.


This year, the City also rehabilitated 660 feet of storm sewer under River Road, rebuilt Airport Road, added a parking lot at the airport, built a new skate park, remodeled the sand volleyball court, installed a new bathroom at the Griffin Park swim beach, made improvements to nearly 200 blocks of city street, and stood up a medical marijuana licensing program.


And that’s just some of what was accomplished - it’s no wonder it’s hard to remember all that happened this year.


Cheers to a successful 2021. May our 2022 be just as productive!

Fort Pierre Mayor Gloria Hanson's Report

Looking Back at 2021


As I write my last column for the year, I am tempted to leap forward into all the exciting things coming up for 2022. But it’s also important to take a look at where we’ve been and what the good folks in Fort Pierre have accomplished in 2021. Here are some high points:


REVENUE. I hate to put money in the #1 spot, but a city can’t do much without it. Revenue, in all categories (sales tax, BBB, and occupancy tax) have all exceeded budget projections. In fact, the sales tax receipts the first 9 months exceeded the 12-month projections.


STREET PROJECTS. Thanks to a nice, long fall and good weather, we were able to complete the three projects:  2nd Street, School Alley, and Rowe Lane. The last two were funded with TIF revenue, and fulfilled a long-time desire to improve our downtown area.


NEW AND EXPANDED BUSINESSES. Through ribbon cuttings and open houses, we celebrated Floyd’s Trucking’s expansion and new Kubota dealership; Shane’s Pharmacy’s beautiful new building; and Fun Time Rentals. Coming up this spring we will cut ribbons for Bad River Furniture’s big new warehouse, new office buildings at AGE and Morris, as well as Teton Arms Gunsmiths’ new location.


REDISTRICTING. With the completion of the 2020 Census, it became obvious that our City’s growth created some population inequity in the three Wards. Ward 1 had 450 registered voters, Ward 2 had 506, and Ward 3 (to the far north) had 670. With the assistance of the staff of the Central Enhancement District, we created several options for the Council to consider. The one that was adopted equalizes the numbers without making any changes in the incumbent council members’ representation. A copy of the new map will be available on the web site after it becomes effective January 1.


EVENTS. Fort Pierre wouldn’t be Fort Pierre without our events. From multiple big rodeos to horse races, from Trader Days and 4th of July activities and First Thursdays, our little City hosts thousands of visitors. None of these events would be possible without a multitude of dedicated volunteers, a talented and helpful City staff, and leadership from Fort Pierre Tourism, Fort Pierre Chamber, Fort Pierre Development, and Stanley County Fairgrounds. It truly does take a village.


Next month, I’ll focus on plans and priorities for 2022. In the meantime, you have our warmest wishes for a blessed Christmas holiday, and a safe and fun New Year.

Jim Protexter, COO
Capital City Economy
CVB Report
Tia Kafka, Convention & Visitors Bureau Director

The Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB) has a busy January planned. Our office helps to coordinate the sport shows supported by the Pierre Business Improvement District. Annually, the CVB attends four sport shows. The Pierre Area will be represented at sport shows in St. Cloud, MN, Eau Clair, WI, Denver, CO and at Pheasant Fest in Omaha, NE. Attendance at these events helps bring fisherman and hunters to our area to take advantage of the many resources Pierre has to offer.


This month the CVB will also be attending the American Bus Association (ABA) Marketplace held in Grapevine, Texas. The ABA conference is the premier business event for the group travel industry. The Marketplace event provides the opportunity to meet face-to-face with bus tour operators from all over the country to talk to them about Pierre and what we have to offer visitors. In addition to the marketplace, the conference offers professional education seminars and numerous networking opportunities.


Last but not least, he South Dakota Tourism Conference will be held at the end of January. This conference is a great opportunity to visit with other tourism industry associates about activities in the coming year that will potentially draw visitors to and/or through our community. The Pierre and Fort Pierre communities will be vying for the Cacklin’ Community Award. Pierre was awarded the title in 2018 for our Rooster Rush promotional efforts, and we hope to reclaim the title again this year.


2022 is off to a great start. Happy New Year!

Membership Report
Katie Johnson, Membership Director
CTE Career Fair RSVP
T.F. Riggs Career & Technical Education Department
Chamber Events & Reminders

Light Up the Pierre Area


There are only a few days left to cast your vote for the best Light Up the Pierre Area display!  View the map of participating locations, and then VOTE online, or by texting (516) 253-2565.

You can also view the displays online here, although a photo just doesn't do them justice!

Winners in four categories will be announced on Jan. 30.

2021 Annual Celebration


The Pierre Area Chamber is proud to announce the first of six award winner's from the Chamber's 2021 Annual Celebration! Congratulations to the Neuharth family of Prairie Paradise Farms on being named the 2021 Farmer/Rancher of the Year!


Congratulations to the 2021 Outstanding Hospitality award winner, Kory LaFurge from Jake's Good Times Place, on this well-deserved honor!


The Pierre Area Pride award was created in the 70's to recognize those who go above and beyond to improve our communities. This year, we recognize the Oahe Family YMCA as the 2021 Pierre Area Pride award recipients - Congratulations! A very well-earned honor.


The Pierre Area Chamber recognizes Meredith Lee of Lee Real Estate as the 2021 Ambassador of the Year. Thank you for your never ending support of the Chamber and Pierre area!


Family businesses are the backbone of our economy. We are proud to announce the 2021 Family Business of they Year award recipients, Midwest Construction & Development - Congratulations on this deserved recognition!


The Pierre Area Chamber is proud to announce that the 2021 Pierre Area Business of the Year award went to... Lariat Lanes! Congratulations on this fantastic achievement, and thank you for your steady commitment to the Pierre area residents and visitors.

The Chamber and its attendees had a fantastic time watching our fellow member employees get hypnotized by comedy hypnotist Kellen Marson! Thank you to the volunteers for being great sports.

The Chamber's Annual Celebration entertainment was sponsored by BankWest - Thank you!

Meet Santa's Reindeer Event


The Chamber was excited to once again able to host Santa and his reindeer at East Pierre Landscape & Garden Center for the second year in a row! Thank you to Leonard Management McDonald's for donating Santa's favorite snack (milk & cookies) with us to share with everyone who stopped out.

Leadership Pierre 2021-2022

 Leadership Pierre enjoyed their fourth session on Dec. 2, which focused on community services. The objective of the session was to learn about the various ways in which you can get involved in the Pierre area, and how those services impact our community and its residents.

Get Involved in What's to Come

January 2022 Calendar of Events

2021 Chamber Board of Directors


Executive Board

Aaron Fabel - President, Oahe Family YMCA

Jodie Anderson - Vice President, Strategic Association Services

Jessica Mefferd - Secretary, Mefferd Agency - Farmer's Union Insurance


Jaymason Bramblee - Treasurer, Oahe Federal Credit Union

Thomas Allerdings - Past President, ClubHouse Hotel & Suties

Board Members

Kellie Yackley
Avera St. Mary's

Ty Kinneberg

Meredith Lee
Lee Real Estate

Steve Bass
Delta Dental of South Dakota

Scott Neu

Reinke Gray Wealth Management

Kevin Tiger
Silver Spur Restaurant

Uriah Steber

Drifter's Bar & Grille


Jill Janecke
Rising Hope Counseling, LLC


Stephen Webb
Gateway Ford, Lincoln & Toyota


Shane Prunty******
Prunty Chiropractic


Ex-Officio Members

Andy Hubbart, PEDCO Chairman

Pierre Mayor Steve Harding

Ft. Pierre Mayor Gloria Hanson




Pierre Area

Chamber Staff


Sara Rankin

Chief Executive Officer


Katie Johnson

Membership Director


Tia Kafka

CVB Director


Mallory Benbow

Events & Communications Director

Pierre Economic Development Corporation

2021 Investor List

(As of 12/21/21)


Thank you to the following businesses, organizations and individuals who are supporting economic development in Central South Dakota through their PEDCO membership investment.
Platinum Investors - $1000

First National Bank

SD Intrastate Pipeline Co.


Gold Investors - $600

A-G-E Corporation
American Bank & Trust
Beck Motor Company
Brosz Engineering Inc.


Silver Investors - $300

Allied Plumbing and Heating Inc.

Bartlett & Weaver Eye Clinic

Delta Dental

Fischer Rounds & Associates Inc.
Slumberland Furniture

Stulken Petersen Lingle Walti & Jones LLP


Bronze Investors - $150

Black Hills Federal Credit Union, Chase Auto & RV, Clausen & Rice Inc, CommTech, Cone Ag Inc., Cowboy Country Stores, DJ’s Convenience Store, Drifters Bar & Grille, Floss Dentistry, Fort Pierre Development Corporation, Friman Oil & Gas Inc., Jake’s Goodtimes Place, Krueger Contracting Inc., La Minestra, May Adam Gerdes & Thompson LLP, McDonald’s, MicroFix Inc., Missouri River Dentistry, Morris Inc., Nagel Agency Inc., Northwest Pipe Fittings Inc., Oahe Federal Credit Union, Oahe Veterinary Clinic, Palmer Currier & Hoffert LLP, Perkins Restaurant, Pierre Area Chamber of Commerce, Ramkota Hotel & Conference Center, Riter Rogers LLP, South Dakota Community Foundation, Servall Uniform & Linen Supply, State 123 Theatre, State Farm Insurance – Becki Potrzeba, Sunnyside Daycare LLC, Thielen Surveying & Mapping, TMA of Pierre, Willow Creek Wildlife, WW Tire Service


Individual & Non-Profit Investors $60

Charles P. Schroyer, SD Bankers Association, SD Chamber of Commerce & Industry 

2021 PEDCO Board of Directors


Executive Board


Andy Hubbart - Chairman,


Ron Wagner - Past Chair,
First National Bank


Damon Wheelhouse - Secretary,
Allied Plumbing & Heating Inc.

Kim Easland - Treasurer,
American Bank & Trust

Trustee - Doug Abraham
May, Adam, Gerdes, Thompson Law Firm

Trustee - Rick Dockter
Ameriprise Financial


Trustee - Gordon Woods
SD Intrastate Pipeline

Karl Richards
Avera Medical Associates Clinic

Prakash Saripalli
My3Tech, 1 Stop Travel

Dawn Morris
Morris Inc.

Zach Clark
Clark Insurance

Bobbie Country
SD Dept. of Labor

Liaisons - Annual Appointment

Aaron Fabel
Chamber of Commerce

Jamie Huizenga
Pierre City Commission

Kim Olson
Area Director of Sen. Mike Rounds

Kristi Honeywell
Pierre City Administrator

Tom Rounds

Hughes County Commission


Jim Protexter
Chief Operating Officer

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