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Holiday Winners – Free Gas for a Year!

During the NEW Holiday Station Store grand opening, we have been giving away free gas to a winner each week! Our winners are:

 


Jaden Dorn – week of September 30

Kathy Heier – week of October 7

Steven Stager – week of October 14

John Shaner – week of October 21

 

There’s still time to get free gas! Stop in to our new Holiday Station Store located near Aberdeen Regional Airport and enter for your chance to win!

Perfect Attendance Winners

We love to reward perfect attendance to our rock-star employees. Here are recent team members who received a cash prize for their perfect attendance.

Fulltime (Full time winners get $100)

  1. Andy Hase
  2. Austin Omland
  3. Elizabeth Moore

 

Part-time (Part time winners get $50)

  1. Hayden Erdman
  2. Maleah Eschenbaum
  3. Wade Uhrich

We appreciate your hard work and dedication to your job! Way to go!

Community-Wide Impacts of Miller Grocery Still Evident, Four Years Later

The intersection of Highway 14 and Highway 45 in South Dakota is neither just a stopping point on the journey from Huron to Pierre, nor the site of two historical steer statues that mark the gateway to Miller, a town of 1,366 people. Since 2018, this intersection has been the site of Kessler’s of Miller, a grocery store cherished by the community as the domino that has since kicked off a flurry of business activity in Miller, home to the Hand County seat.

As the regional hub for nearby towns, including Highmore, Harrold, Wolsey, and Wessington, Kessler’s isn’t the first grocery store to come to town, but it’s certainly a shining light in the region, says Kecia Beranek, Executive Director for On Hand Development Corporation, who, together with various partners, including Dakota Resources through a Capital Investment Fund loan, helped bring Kessler’s to town four years ago.

“It’s been a breath of fresh air to have a grocery store in town that cares about the products they’re selling and cares about the significant number of people they employ, both full-time and part-time,” Beranek said. “The little things that you expect from a grocery store, like offering quality produce and making investments in improvements to the facility, are often the things you take for granted, and we’re so appreciative here in Miller to have a grocery store in town that cares about our community.”

While the push to bring Kessler’s grocery store – and the grand opening itself – took place before Beranek took the helm at On Hand Development Corporation in 2019, the excitement and energy that the storefront brought to the community of Miller and to the region as a whole didn’t go unnoticed. Early renovations like installing new, state-of-the-art coolers and attractive lighting offered timely upgrades to the store’s environment, and the management team’s commitment to offering fresh, high-quality produce gave Miller residents all the reason to shop local.

Additionally, the installation of gas pumps and a customer loyalty perks program in 2020 further ensured the impact of Kessler’s would go beyond the city limits of Miller. Kessler’s prime location at the intersection of two major highways in South Dakota, as well as its proximity to other businesses, like Ace Hardware, which recently came under new ownership and subsequently expanded, and South Dakota Arms, a firearms dealer that has made significant investments in their facility, have made the case for travelers across the region to stop and stay awhile in Miller.

Kessler’s Grocery Store is conveniently located on the corners of Highway 14 and 45, allowing for easy access to people traveling through. Photo credit: Kecia Beranek

 

“I visit with business owners on a regular basis, and they’re all seeing an uptick of visitors coming from out of town; you see license plates that aren’t just ‘33’,” Beranek said, referring to the first two numbers on the South Dakota license plate that designates cars from Hand County. “People are coming to town to get their groceries and are staying to do other things. The impact of Kessler’s on the corner of Highways 14 and 45 has been contagious; they invested in their business, and it’s been a domino effect to see that all of this business activity started on that corner with Kessler’s.”

The grocery store’s impact is also making financial waves in Miller, with meaningful increases in sales tax the past three years, Beranek said. And while Beranek continues to see growth in the Miller business community, it’s the grocery store’s willingness to adopt the town’s history and traditions that makes Kessler’s special to Miller residents.

Kecia Beranek appreciates how Kessler’s not only provides a need to her community, but also has incorporated local culture and history. Photo credit: Kecia Beranek

 

“When people travel from city to city in South Dakota, Miller became known for the two steers on platforms near the intersection where Kessler’s resides,” Beranek said. “These steer statues were removed and restored in 2020. After they were restored, residents and travelers alike will notice when they drive through town now that one of these two steers is now part of the Kessler’s signage in front of their storefront. The fact that they incorporated the steer into their plans for new signage means that they understand the importance of our culture and our history.”

Dakota Resources’ mission is to connect capital and capacity to empower rural communities. Our Community Development Loan program, and specifically the Capital Investment Fund, provides the funding to assist local economic developers in getting projects done. Dakota Resources’ Director of Community Lending Terri LaBrie sees the impact that projects like this are helping create. “Helping the city of Miller and On Hand Development with the Kessler’s Grocery store project is very rewarding for our organization,” LaBrie said. “A grocery store is essential to the vitality of our rural communities, and we are thrilled we could be a part of the project. It is projects like this that help us work towards a thriving rural.”

Bob Ross Painting Contest Winner

Kessler’s recently had a painting contest among staff. Out of 7 other employees, Kyla won. The contestants were judged on two core requirements:

  1. How close to appearance they could get to iconic painter, Bob Ross
  2. Most inspiring painting

Owner Reed Kessler judged the contest at corporate headquarters. Lots of laughter and fun was had!

Thank you to Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 4

Fraternal Order of Police receive a donation check.

Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 4 Receives Donation

A big thank you to the men and women from the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 4–Aberdeen, South Dakota for stopping in this morning!

Members of our leadership team and bakery team presented them with a $1,500 check, which came from proceeds from our 2022 Donut Days event!

A BIGGER thank you to Aberdeen for supporting the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 4–Aberdeen, South Dakota, our fellow neighbors, and friends that serve and protect this community we love.

Our local FOP chapter is comprised of 73 Law Enforcement Officials from the Aberdeen Police Department, Brown County Sheriff’s Office, South Dakota Department of Criminal Investigation, Groton Police Department, South Dakota Game Fish and Parks, South Dakota Highway Patrol, Federal Bureau of Investigation, as well as our retired members. The non-profit advocates for law enforcement by working to improve the working conditions of law enforcement officers and the safety of those we serve through education, legislation, information, community involvement, and employee representation.

To learn more, you can visit the FOP Lodge 4’s Facebook page.

Employee Spotlight: Brittany Denton

A Brief Conversation with Brittany Denton

A Brief Conversation with Brittany Denton

What is your favorite part of your job?

Interacting with customers! It’s awesome being on a first-name basis with a lot of them. You get to know them and their families, share stories and experiences. There is always a good laugh involved! I also love putting a smile on their face when you get something special that they are looking for and can’t find anywhere else. Getting involved with events whether it be at the store or in the community is also a fav. This community is very close and it’s amazing to see them all pull together.

What do you like to do in your free time?

On my days off I like to go back to Aberdeen and spend time with my boyfriend and his family. We like to travel when we can and I like to be able to spend time with my son, whether it’s riding bikes, taking the dog for a walk, having a bonfire, or just hanging out at home with him. He’s currently teaching me all about how to build Legos!

Tell us a little about your family:

I have a 5-year old son Jaxon who keeps me on my toes! My boyfriend Justin and I have been together going on almost 6 years and he is back in Aberdeen. I also have one older brother Chris who lives in Florida with his wife Jasmine and two beautiful girls Auralia and Evangeline.

Miss Amazing Fundraiser is a Success!

Miss Amazing Fundraiser Totals Over $4000.

A huge thank you to the Aberdeen community for supporting our Miss Amazing Day fundraiser! It was a fabulous day.

We raised a total of $4,213.05; all funds raised were matched by the Kessler family, allowing us to give a grand total of $8,426.10 to Kessler’s own Whitney Rauscher. The money allows her to travel to Nashville to compete in the Miss Amazing national competition.

We’d also like to extend a HUGE thank you to Beyond the Balloon, Hub City Radio News – Aberdeen, SD, our local Coca-Cola and Cass Clay Creamery vendors for helping make this possible!

Nationals, here she comes!