Synergy Nutrition Hub, Total Lawn Care awarded CHEDA B3 grants

Mike Christopherson

The two latest Crookston businesses to be awarded Building Better Business (B3) grants from the Crookston Housing and Economic Development Authority are Synergy Nutrition Hub, located on Robert Street downtown, and Total Lawn Care (TLC), which is putting the finishing touches on a new building on Bruce Street in the city’s industrial park.

The successful B3 program received an influx of $50,000 from the Crookston City Council this year to keep grant applications coming in and grant dollars going out. 

With the budget boost came some modifications to the program, including a subcommittee of the CHEDA Board members and members of the Crookston City Council hearing grant requests in person from applying business owners and recommending approval, or not.

Synergy owner Dillon Fenno asked for $3,000, but the B3 program does not fund grants to purchase inventory, and the committee determined that part of Fenno’s request involved adding to his inventory. So he’s being awarded $1,630. On his application, Fenno says the funds will be used for new signage, marketing and branding that will include a six-month social media marketing subscription, new branding with a logo, a new sign, and marketing materials.

TLC owner Morgan Terpstra sought and was awarded a $4,000 B3 grant, which in his application he indicates will be spent on signage and landscaping at his new facility, and the purchase of a computer and software.

Members of the new subcommittee said they liked the modified process of meeting with grant-seeking business owners in person in order to create a dialogue.

“It was a great process,” committee member and Ward 6 Council member Dylane Klatt said. “TLC is the perfect example of what this program is for.”

Committee member and at-large council member Wayne Melbye agreed.

“It was nice meeting with folks and seeing what they had in mind and what we had in mind,” he said.

CHEDA Executive Director Craig Hoiseth indicated that the committee also received a third B3 grant application, but the committee didn’t think it had enough information to forward it to the CHEDA Board for approval. It’s possible the applicant will appear before the committee a second time with the additional requested details, Hoiseth said.