November 29 Downtown E-Newsletter

The Downtowners’

City Center Newsletter

November 29, 2012

What You Will Find…


□ Downtown Updates

□ Upcoming Events

□ Association News


Small Business Saturday Weekend a Success

Downtown Sales Strong…

The 3rd Annual American Express Small Business Saturday took place Nov 24, the day after Black Friday. Over 100 million people participated in 2011, and from the looks of Downtown Bismarck, 2012 was a huge success as well!  Downtown businesses reported strong sales over the weekend, many beating 2011 sales numbers.  There also was a marked increase in the number of shoppers for Small Business Saturday and Black Friday in Downtown Bismarck.  Senator-Elect Heidi Heitkamp also visited Downtown businesses to shop small on Small Business Saturday.

Restaurants also experienced a busy weekend with locals and visitors, some participating in the Downtown Turkey Pub Crawl, others hosting local live music or holiday specials.

With the emerging retail and restaurant district in Downtown Bismarck, the area was rife with shoppers stopping from store to store.  From new boutiques, shops, and restaurants, to veteran businesses, critical mass is building.

We want to thank all those businesses who participated in Small Business Saturday.  Special thank you to members Clear Channel Radio and Town Square Media for assisting the Downtowners with promoting SBS.Holidayshopping will continue throughout December with businesses extending hours and days of operations for shoppers’ convenience.

Be sure to come Downtown for 1st Thursdays on December 6, where many of our Downtown Businesses will be staying open late and offering great deals.  Consider booking your organization’s holiday party Downtown, purchase employee holiday gifts, or make a night of it with dinner and show at the Belle or Dakota Stage Theater.  Beyond the holiday season, we also encourage our community to continue to shop local in Downtown Bismarck.  Our independent business owners contribute more of their sales to the local economy, their profits stay here, they are our friends and neighbors, and they’re creating a unique destination in the heart of North Dakota.

Visit next week for all the specials for 1st Thursdays Dec 6.

Holiday Window Decoration Contest!

The Deadline is approaching fast!  The theme this year is Free for All! Decorate your Downtown windows in whatever creative theme you choose.  However, this year we will be having two winners!  We will have a Member’s Choice and a Critic’s Choice!  If you’d like to participate, simply send a picture of your window to us by December 12 to get on the ballot.  We’ll then send out a ballot to all the member businesses to choose their 3 favorite windows.  Awards and gift certificates will be given to the top 3 Member’s Choice and 1 Critic’s Choice.  Happy Decorating!


Downtown Updates

FireFlour Pizza is now open for take out and carry out in Downtown Bismarck.  Inside seating will be finished soon.  Call in your order at 323-9000 or stop in and carry it out.  Hours are Tuesday-Thursday 11am-9pm, Friday-Saturday 11am-10pm, closed Sunday-Monday. They are located at 111 N 5th St, east of Peacock Alley.

— At the September 25 Bismarck City Commission meeting, the city determined that the CORE Programs used for Downtown revitalization, can now be used again.  What does this mean?  Property and business owners can once again apply for the CORE Façade & Signage Grant for their property.  Owners or developers looking to create housing in Downtown Bismarck can apply for the Housing Incentive Grant.  There are also grants for Sidewalk Subsurface Infill and a Technical Assistance Bank.  Please contactBismarck’s Downtown Planner Jason Tomanek for more information.  701-355-1849.

— The Bismarck Parking Authority is offering free evening parking in the 3rd and Main Ramp from 4pm to 2am daily through the end of the year.  With all the new activity and nightlife in Downtown Bismarck, the ramps will allow the public to enjoy the city center and not have to look for street parking.

— Here’s a refresher on the snow removal policy for sidewalks.  All properties must have snow removed from sidewalks AND corner curb cuts 24 hours after snowfall.  Failure to do so can result in liability claims.  Please clean your sidewalks Downtown, since visitors use them to get to all our great businesses. Missing one sidewalk can make the difference in coming downtown for people who find it difficult to get around. Thanks!


Tax Increment Financing (TIF) Lawsuit Settled Favorably for City

On November 27, District Judge Foughty ruled in favor of the city’s use of Tax Increment Financing for a proposed Quiet Rail Zone and possible new parking ramp Downtown.  A lawsuit was filed by Erling Haugland in the spring of 2010, claiming the city’s use of TIF was illegal.  Mr. Haugland lost and appealed to the ND Supreme Court, where he also lost.  However, the issues of Quiet Rail and a ramp were remanded back to district court. This Tuesday, the court ruled in favor of the city.  The Bismarck City Commission has placed the Quiet Rail Zone and possible new parking ramp on a special meeting agenda for December 10.  There will not be a vote on these possible expenditures until updated costs are known.

The Downtowners want to thank the City of Bismarck staff and elected officials, Attorney Randy Bakke, and all those who’ve worked to ensure Bismarck’s Downtown continues to thrive.


Upcoming events

What’s Shakin Downtown…


Nov 27-Dec 21

BAGA Member Artist’s

Holiday Art Show, Rec: Nov 30


Nov 30-Dec 2

Pride of Dakota

Holiday Showcase


Dec 6

1st Thursdays Alive After 5

Shops open late with sales


Dec 6-16

Dakota Stage Presents:

Inspecting Carol


Dec 7-9

Northern Plains Dance Presents:



Dec 21

Holiday Live Music Concert

4 Local Bands Perform Live!


Downtowners’ Association News

Organization and member news …

You can find all of our member’s information at:

Welcome to our Newest Members!

*Midwest Gold Company & Grace Diamond Exchange

 *Laughing Sun Brewing Co. 

Member Bismarck Downtown Artist Co-op (BDAC) is hosting an exhibit title “A Second Foot In The Door” Dec 7-29 in the historic Tribune Bldg at 222 N 4th St.  The opening reception will be Friday Dec 7 from 5:30pm-8:30pm.  BDAC hours are Tues & Wed 10-4, Thurs & Fri 10-8, and Sat 12-4.  Call or email BDAC for more information at 701-202-3400 or

The Downtowners Annual Meeting will be January 9, 2013 at 9:05am in the KFYR-TV Board Room.  All members are welcome to attend the meetings.


Please send all member business news and events to:

Check the Downtown Business Association’s websites for updated news and events or

Please forward this on to people interested in Downtown news!