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Manufacturer's Week a success for Park Rapids

Last week was declared Manufacturer's Week throughout Minnesota. In Park Rapids, a local event turned out to be a great community showcase. Many manufacturers in town showed up at TeamWorks Thursday afternoon to display information about differen...

Last week was declared Manufacturer's Week throughout Minnesota. In Park Rapids, a local event turned out to be a great community showcase.

Many manufacturers in town showed up at TeamWorks Thursday afternoon to display information about different industries in town. It was a very well attended event, with standing room only. Kudos to members of the Hubbard County Regional Economic Development Commission for working hard to make the event a success.

Manufacturing is a vital part of the landscape of Park Rapids with several businesses providing higher-wage, high-skilled jobs for our community.

According to the Department of Employment and Economic Development, almost one out of every seven jobs in the state is in the manufacturing industry and the industry accounts for 17.3 percent of Minnesota's total wages. In 2007, manufacturing produced $33.9 billion for the state economy and is the largest share -- 13.3 percent -- of our gross domestic product, according to DEED.

Lamb-Weston/RDO Frozen, the largest manufacturer in Park Rapids employs nearly 500 people.

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Ron D. Offutt, founder and Chief Executive Officer of R.D. Offutt Co., spoke about the many benefits of manufacturing in Hubbard County as the featured speaker at Thursday's event.

Offutt described how he knew Park Rapids was the place to build the plant because of the excellent land and water supply. We feel fortunate for the original decision to build the plant in Park Rapids.

We'd like to thank all the manufacturers in the Park Rapids area for the jobs they have brought to the area and for their part in making this a prosperous community.

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