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March 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 March 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


You do not need to register to participate in the parade, just be lined up and ready by 5:15 PM.

CEO's Report
Sara Rankin, President & CEO

The Pierre Area Chamber is extremely lucky to have fantastic members!


Speaking of luck, do you ever notice how some people just seem to be luckier than others? Albert Einstein once said, “In the middle of every difficulty lies opportunity.” The last couple of years have presented much difficulty and the Chamber staff strives to give our members ample opportunity to set themselves and their businesses up for success. The more you get involved, promote your business, partner with others, and focus on good customer service, the better chance you will have of success. Growing your network is likely the most valuable thing you can do to consistently get yourself in front of opportunity.  


Here are a few ways that the Chamber can extend the proverbial four-leaf clover:

Now, we can’t guarantee you will be the luckiest person in the world, but you will be putting yourself in a position for success. Happy St. Patrick’s Day!


Thank you again for your membership and for your continued support of the Pierre and Fort Pierre communities!  




Why Network?
Chamber Blog Post

Did you know that it's possible to continue testing positive for COVID-19 for several weeks, even after you are no longer contagious? Find more information and tips for your business and employees by clicking HERE.

Pierre Mayor Steve Harding's Report

We have taken another big step forward toward building Pierre’s new outdoor swimming pool. The project is out for bid! The commission approved the action on Feb. 22.


Given the complexity of the project and nuances of the construction industry right now, we are taking a unique approach with this project. We’re giving the bidders the option of two different timelines.


They’ll bid the project with two different completion dates -  May 25, 2023 and Oct. 13, 2023. 


We know the pool project is an involved one; we know there aren’t a lot of contracting companies without work to do right now; and we know the materials necessary for the project might not be easily procured. To balance those challenges and their financial impacts, we’re offering contractors more flexibility than you’d typically see in a bidding process.


We will know how well that strategy worked by the end of the month.  The bid packages are due back to the city on March 31.


As you might remember, this is a two-phased project. The first phase, which has been underway since August, was the earth work portion. Since then, about 15,000 yards of soil was excavated and replaced. An additional, 20,000 yards of soil was brought in to elevate the construction site out of the water table and to compact the soil for stability.


Some of that soil, the part used for compaction, will be removed before the second phase, actual pool construction, begins. That will leave a retaining wall that reaches more than 10 feet on the west side of the complex.


Here’s the fun part! The plans for the new pool include a shallow water pool, a multi-purpose pool that can double as a competition pool, a lazy river, as well as a new bathhouse and snack bar. If fully realized, the new pool will also include a shallow-water play structure, a speed slide, a drop slide, a raft slide, a kiddie slide, a zip line and numerous other water features.


The details about the pool are available at I encourage you to check it out. 


The project has been supported wonderfully by the community. A giant thank you to all who have helped this project along. From the citizen committee that identified needs and design back in 2018, to the Capital Campaign Committee that’s been drumming up financial support since 2019, to the donors who are helping make the vision possible, and, of course, the staff who have worked behind the scenes to get us here! 


This pool has been a long time coming. It’s going to be awesome!

Fort Pierre Mayor Gloria Hanson's Report

One of my favorite landmarks in Fort Pierre is Cedar Hill Cemetery. Built in 1894 on beautiful wooded hills just a few miles west of the city (south of the water storage tank on Verendrye Drive) Cedar Hill is the final resting place of a variety of early residents, including outlaws, fur traders, military veterans of the Civil War, WWI and WWII, prospectors, Native American residents, suffragettes, murder victims and historic leaders. It also holds a great many children who succumbed to multiple epidemics.


Shortly after taking office as mayor almost 8 years ago, I received a complaint about the condition of the Cedar Hill Cemetery. I checked it out, and the complainant was right – maintenance of the cemetery had been neglected. So, in the spring of 2014, members of the Masonic Lodge, city employees, inmates from the women’s prison, City Council members and other volunteers spent a weekend trimming bushes and trees, mowing and trimming grass, and righting tipped headstones. That same year the City installed solar lighting for the American flag so it could remain flying 24 hours a day.


Every year since, the Masons, Doug Runge, and other volunteers have faithfully improved and provided maintenance of the cemetery. The city parks crew does a great job keeping the area mowed and trimmed.


The City Council made the decision a few years ago to cease selling burial plots until we could make sure the records were accurate. We hope to reverse the decision soon. We also want to offer self-guided walking tours of the cemetery to historians and the general public.


To address the need for updated historical records and to make sure the cemetery gets the attention it deserves, I decided to reinstate the Cedar Hill Cemetery Board, which had been inactive for a decade or more. Last fall, the Council approved the appointments of Doug and Jeff Mortenson, Steve Likness, Jody Heemstra, Ken Stewart, Carl Rathbun, and Doug Runge. The Board meets monthly; it has organized, elected officers, adopted bylaws, and established priorities. I agree with Ken Stewart’s description of the board members: “fun people, passionate about Fort Pierre and Cedar Hill.”


I am so grateful for dedicated individuals in this community who volunteer their time and talents to preserve our rich history for generations to come.

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

This month, the Pierre Convention & Visitors Bureau launched the new 2022 Pierre Visitor Guide. The guide is distributed to lodging, sport shows, convenience stores and the airport. It also goes out to convention attendees, interstate rest stops and other cities throughout South Dakota. If you are interested in having the Pierre Visitor Guide available at your business, or as handouts for your meeting, convention, or conference, visit or by calling 605.224.7361.


Every year the Pierre CVB takes part in the South Dakota Tourisms’ Great Get-Aways program, which generates thousands of sales leads for visitor-related businesses in our area. A visitor guide is sent to each individual who expresses interest in visiting Pierre. Every year, we send out thousands of guides to interested travelers. 


We are excited to have some fun events in the area this month. The State Amateur Billiards 8-Ball Tournament is March 2 – 6, 2022, the Special Olympics basketball tournament, March 12 – 13, 2022, the St. Paddy’s Day dart tournament March 17 – 20, 2022, and the SD state cornhole tournament will be March 25 – 26, 2022. Show your hospitality to everyone you meet; small interactions can be the pivotal influence of a positive or negative experience for visitors in our lovely community.

Membership Report
Katie Johnson, Membership Director
New Members

Pierre Closets

29307 Gary St. Suite A

Pierre, SD 57501


Pierre Closets has storage solutions that will transform your disorganized, catch-all closet or pantry into a functional, organized, even beautiful space. Let us help you reclaim your time, organize your space nd live happier.

Fort Pierre Motel

211 S 1st Street

Fort Pierre, SD 57532


Locally owned-family operated motel with all outside entrances. The Fort Pierre Motel is the closest motel to the Fort Pierre National Grasslands. Located 300 ft from the Missouri River boat dock.

Member Highlights
We Are Better Together

Ever wonder why we use the number 2 instead of the grammatically correct word, 'to,' in our #Loyal2Local campaigns and promotions? It's for the same reason that we are named the Pierre 𝗔𝗥𝗘𝗔 Chamber of Commerce.


The '2' represents our two cities, Pierre and Fort Pierre, in which the Chamber represents and promotes. We are a resource and voice for our members; and with unity comes strength! When there is teamwork and collaboration, wonderful things can be achieved.

We encourage the Pierre and Fort Pierre residents to continue to be #LOYAL2LOCAL between our two municipalities, so that we can continue to grow and prosper as a community.

#Loyal2Local #Pierreadise #FortPierreLife #BetterTogether #PierreFortPierre

Chamber News, Events & Reminders

Chamber Changes

Winter Business After Hours

The Pierre Area Chamber held its Winter Business After Hours on Thursday, Feb. 10 at River Cities Public Transit. Co-Hosts included (from top L to R) Elleworx Massage and Wellness, Lynn's Dakotamart, Pierre Closets, Dakota Plains Federal Credit Union and TEAMMATES Mentoring Program of Pierre.


Participating businesses and attendees enjoyed food provided by Lynn's Dakotamart of Pierre, beverages provided by RCPT, and getting back to building relationships in person. 


Thank you to all who joined us! If your business would like to participate in a future Business After Hours, contact Katie via email ( or call 605-224-7361.

Legislative Coffee's 2022


Thank you to Jodie Anderson for moderating our first Legislative Coffee in 2022 with our District 24 Legislators on Saturday, January 29 at the Pierre Area Chamber of Commerce. We encourage all residents to stay informed during the 97th Legislative Session.


Thank you to Steve Willard for moderating our second Legislative Coffee in 2022 with our District 24 Legislators on Saturday, February 12. We encourage all residents to stay informed during the 97th Legislative Session.

Leadership Pierre 2021-2022

 Leadership Pierre enjoyed their sixth session on Feb. 3, which focused on criminal justice and emergency management in the Pierre area. The objective of the session was to gain insight into the justice system, and understand how those services and programs impact our community and its residents.


Thank you to our 2021-2022 Leadership Pierre sponosors:

Champion Sponsors, Avera and BankWest

Session Sponsors, American Bank & Trust, Lynn's Dakotamart, Sanford Health Pierre Clinic and Walmart

Lunch Sponsors, Aflac Pierre, Anderson Nill & Associates, and First Dakota National Bank

Get Involved in What's to Come


You can email specific candidate questions to 

March 2022 Calendar of Events

2022 Chamber Board of Directors


Executive Board

Aaron Fabel - Chair,

Oahe Family YMCA

Jodie Anderson - Vice Chair, Strategic Association Services

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


Jaymason Bramblee - TreasurerOahe Federal Credit Union

Thomas Allerdings - Past Chair, 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


Kari Bauman
State Farm Insurance


Ex-Officio Members

Andy Hubbart, PEDCO Chairman

Pierre Mayor Steve Harding

Ft. Pierre Mayor Gloria Hanson




Pierre Area

Chamber Staff


Sara Rankin

President & CEO


Katie Johnson

Membership Director


Tia Kafka

CVB Director


Mallory Benbow

Vice President of Marketing


Anne Norden

Office Manager

Pierre Economic Development Corporation

2022 Investor List

(As of 2/23/22)


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

Avera St. Mary's Hospital/Avera Medical Group Clinic


First National Bank

Montana-Dakota Utilities

SD Intrastate Pipeline Co.


Gold Investors - $600

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

First Dakota National Bank

Midwest Development Inc.


Silver Investors - $300

Allied Plumbing and Heating Inc.

Anderson, Nill & Associates Inc.

Bartlett & Weaver Eye Clinic

Dairy Queen

Delta Dental

Fischer Rounds & Associates Inc.

Northridge Plaza

Nystrom Electrical Contracting Inc.

Robins Water Conditioning Inc.
Slumberland Furniture

Stulken Petersen Lingle Walti & Jones LLP


Bronze Investors - $150

Acorn Trust Company, American Family Insurance – Brittney Schiefelbein Agency, AmericInn Hotel & Suites, Anderson Rumpca Dentistry, Black Hills Federal Credit Union, Branding Iron Bistro, Butler Machinery Co., Capital Journal, Central Dakota Eyecare LLP, Chandlers Inc., Chase Auto & RV, Clausen & Rice Inc, Clubhouse Hotel & Suites, CommTech, Cone Ag Inc., Country Carpet & Flooring, Cowboy Country Stores, DJ’s Convenience Store, Dakota Radio Group KGFX – KPLO – River 92.7 – 1001.1 The Eagle, Dakota Storm Roofing, Rick Dockter/Ameriprise Financial, Drifters Bar & Grille, East Pierre Landscape & Garden Center, Envirotech, Feigum Funeral Home, Ferding Electric Inc., Fine Line Auto, Floss Dentistry, Fort Pierre Development Corporation, Fort Pierre Livestock Auction, Friman Oil & Gas Inc., Grossenburg Implement, Hughes County Abstract, Ingram Pest Service, Isburg Funeral Chapels, Jake’s Goodtimes Place, Jerome Beverage Inc., Krueger Contracting Inc., La Minestra, Leingang Home Center, Mad Mary’s Steakhouse & Saloon, May Adam Gerdes & Thompson LLP, McDonald’s, MicroFix Inc., Midcontinent Communications, Missouri River Dentistry, Bachand & Hruska PC, Morris Inc., Mustang Aviation, My Place Hotel, Nagel Agency Inc., Northwest Pipe Fittings Inc., Oahe Federal Credit Union, Oahe Veterinary Clinic, Olinger Law Firm, Olson Plumbing Inc., Palmer Currier & Hoffert LLP, Peitz Heating & Cooling, Pepsi-Cola Bottling Company, Perkins Restaurant, Pierre Area Chamber of Commerce, Pizza Ranch, Puetz Corporation, Ramkota Hotel & Conference Center, Reinke Gray Wealth Management, Richie Z’s Brickhouse BBQ, Riter Rogers LLP, Runnings, SDN Communications, Servall Uniform & Linen Supply, ServiceMaster of Pierre, South Dakota Community Foundation, State 123 Theatre, State Farm Insurance – Becki Potrzeba, Sunnyside Daycare LLC, Swenson & Cowan Dental, Thielen Surveying & Mapping, Titan Machinery Inc., TMA of Pierre, Wheelhouse Plumbing, Willard & Associates Inc., Willow Creek Wildlife, WW Tire Service


Individual & Non-Profit Investors $60

Capital City Campus, Charles P. Schroyer, SD Bankers Association, SD Chamber of Commerce & Industry, Rev. Jon B. Urbach

2022 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


Board Members

Karl Richards
Avera Medical Associates Clinic

Dustin Christopherson

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

Mary Lehecka-Nelson
Office of Sen. Mike Rounds

Kristi Honeywell
Pierre City Administrator

Tom Rounds

Hughes County Commission


Jim Protexter
Chief Operating Officer

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