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Business and Industrial Appreciation Day event fast approaching

The 2010 Business and Industrial Appreciation Day (BIAD) event is fast approaching and will honor Gardonville Cooperative of Brandon and Alexandria.

The 2010 BIAD event is Friday, October 15 at 11:30 a.m. at Arrowwood Resort and Conference Center. Tickets to attend the event are currently on sale at the Alexandria Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce and Alexandria Area Economic Development Commission.

The BIAD award is presented annually to a local business by the Alexandria Area Economic Development Commission and the Alexandria Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce. Criteria for selection of the receiving company is based upon factors including:

•Jobs the company creates for the community and/or region

•Investments the company has made to facilities within Douglas County

•Community contributions that the company makes.

About the recipient:

Gardonville Cooperative Telephone Association has been in operation in the communities of western Douglas County since 1943 and was formed by a group that had a vision and understanding of how important telecommunications would be to the region's future. From its humble beginnings as a consolidation of small farmer-owned rural telephone line systems to the highly integrated and cutting edge system that is in place today, Gardonville has acted as a catalyst for technological innovation and access throughout the region.

In addition to telephone services, today Gardonville provides Internet access, web hosting, digital television, cellular phone, and local broadcasting services to citizens and businesses throughout Douglas County and the region.

To support and encourage the economic and community development activities of communities throughout western Douglas County, Gardonville Cooperative is actively engaged in the Brandon Economic Development Authority and has worked with a number of local businesses to secure both private and USDA funding for construction and expansion projects.

In 2008, Gardonville expanded and relocated their business offices in Brandon into a 21,900 square foot facility at 800 Central Avenue North. In April of 2009, a retail sales location was opened in Alexandria to provide increased customer access in the growing Alexandria marketplace.

Gardonville Cooperative provides residential and commercial services throughout nearly all of Douglas County and portions of eastern Grant County. The company currently employs 30 individuals and is continuing to aggressively grow the range of services provided to businesses and residents throughout the region.

About the event:

Every year, starting in 1984, an Alexandria-area business or organization has been selected as the BIAD recipient and has been honored for their significant contributions to the social and economic vitality of the Douglas County region through creation of jobs, business investment, and community development efforts.

The local celebration has become one of the largest Greater Minnesota events with consistent attendance ranging from 250 to 350 area citizens, businesspersons and government officials.

The BIAD program is a joint effort of the Chamber and the AAEDC, and is focused on providing an opportunity for the Alexandria regional community to say, "Thank you for being a vital part of our community." Community citizens and business representatives are invited and encouraged to attend this year's event and honor the efforts of Gardonville Cooperative.

For more information on the 2010 BIAD Award Program or to purchase tickets for the luncheon event honoring Gardonville Cooperative, contact Patrick Kalina at the AAEDC, (320) 763-4545; or Kathleen Lindenberg at the Alexandria Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce, (320) 763-3161.