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Crookston Building Center, Real Good Bath and Body awarded CHEDA B3 grants

Crookston Building Center will apply their grant funds to a new parking lot project, and Real Good Bath and Body will purchase equipment to make more of their popular bath bombs.

Mike Christopherson
Crookston Times

The CHEDA Board has approved two more B3 (Building Better Business) grants, to Crookston Building Center and Real Good Bath & Body.

    The program was born a couple years ago with an initial allocation of $50,000. Consistent grant applications and approvals have marked the time since its inception, and the latest two grant awards will bring the balance to below $10,000. It’s expected that the CHEDA Board will soon have a discussion about replenishing the B3 budget.

    Businesses can apply for a maximum of two B3 grants, but not at once. If the applicant is a graduate of Crookston High School or the University of Minnesota Crookston they can be awarded up to $2,000 more, for a maximum grant award of $5,000. Applicants must also show an investment of their own money in whatever project they are pursuing to enhance their business. They are required to complete their project within six months of receiving B3 funds, otherwise they must return the money. If they cease to operate or leave Crookston within two years, they must give back half of their award.

The latest grants

    CBC owner Justin Cameron, a CHS grad, was awarded $4,000. The grant will go toward a new parking lot for the store, estimated to cost $60,000.

    Carol Simmons, owner of Real Good Bath & Body on South Broadway, was awarded $3,000 to go toward her project estimated to cost a little over $6,000. She’s purchasing a bath bomb press, commercial mixer, citric acid and baking soda, and a coconut oil and olive oil barrel.

    Simmons’ predominant aspect of her business is making and selling soap. While she has a customer base in Minnesota and North Dakota, she also has a market in China. She has a second location at West Acres Mall in Fargo.

    CHEDA Executive Director Craig Hoiseth said bath bombs are a big part of Simmons’ business, and the grant will allow her to increase her bath bomb-making capacity.