Category Archives: Economic Development

Lots Happening in Downtown Northfield

Upcoming Events

Defeat of Jesse James Days Sept. 6-10

It’s time again for the annual celebration of our loyal townsfolk who defeated the James Gang back on September 7, 1876. New this year is a Craft Beverage Festival at Armory Square, featuring beer, cider and cocktails from Imminent Brewing, Tanzenwald Brewing, Keepsake Cidery, Chapel Brewing and Loon Liquors. Other highlights include the Northfield Rotary Club Jesse James Bike Tour on the 9th (free beer or root beer at the After Pedal Party) and the Northfield Shares 5K Run/Walk on the 10th. Check out all of the fun including re-enactments, carnival, parade, rodeo and more at



Photo credit: Nick Gerhardt, Northfield News

J. Grundy’s Rueb ‘N’ Stein Farewell Party Sept 16

The Rueb will celebrate the end of an era with an all day party, capped off by a performance from members of The Big Wu starting at 9 pm. Joe Grundhoefer is looking forward to enjoying some time off after 36 years of restaurant ownership. He wants to invite all of his former employees and loyal customers to attend the celebration. A local business partnership,  Freetime Restaurants LLC, will begin a major remodel this fall and plan to open a new rustic, upscale casual restaurant in the summer of 2018. The new restaurant will have something for everyone: unique menu with locally sourced ingredients, outdoor seating, a bar/lounge and live music. The last day of business for the Rueb will be September 17th.

Business is Thriving in Downtown Northfield

Anniversaries and Goodbyes

Last month we celebrated with local businesses as Mainstream Boutique had a 2-year anniversary,  Paper Petalum had their 30th and The Rare Pair marked 40 years downtown. Also in August, after a 7-year run, Studio Elements closed its door at 16 Bridge Square. Thanks to Jill Enestvedt for her terrific efforts and fine shop. At the end of July, Mike Moyers closed Mike’s Bicycle Shop after a 25-year run on Grastvedt Lane. We want to thank Mike for being the go-to bike shop, not just in Northfield, but Rice County, for so many years and wish him well in his well-deserved retirement. Mike’s son Stu will be relocating the shop to Dundas and opening soon on County Road 1.



Hello and Welcome

Opening this month at 16 Bridge Square, new Naturopathic Practice Fine Fettle will bring health and wellness goods to the former Studio Elements space. Northfield Hospital & Clinics just announced plans to open an Express Care Clinic with convenient evening and weekend hours inside Sterling Pharmacy in early 2018.


Content Bookstore is moving!!

Have you heard the news? Content Bookstore is moving to a new location in Downtown Northfield. But don’t worry about having a hard time finding the new store, the owners are only moving it across the hallway in the same building!

The shop will open at its new location on Saturday, April 29th, as indie bookstores around the country celebrate the third annual Independent Bookstore Day.

“When we opened the shop, we knew this was a community that would enthusiastically support an indie bookstore,” says owner Jessica Peterson White. “We didn’t know quite how enthusiastic our customers would be! We already find we need more space to support our robust events schedule, to expand our offerings for kids and families, and to continue to cultivate the cozy, relaxed atmosphere and lovingly curated selection our readers appreciate.”

Customers will still find Content at The Shops at 314 Division St., in the heart of Downtown Northfield. In their new space, they’ll gain about 30% more square footage and a huge increase in shelf space. The shop already has a full events schedule set for the new space, including Lorna Landvik on May 1 and Kathleen Ann Kenney on June 22. Details of events are available at

Independent Bookstore Day has always been a favorite celebration at the store, and this year it will feel extra special,” says Peterson White. The shop will open at 10 am with free donuts and coffee for customers. At 11 am, local illustrators Aimee Hagerty Johnson and David Huyck will help young readers 4 and up make their own Little Golden Books, in commemoration of the iconic books’ 75th year in print. At 4 pm, the shop will host a celebratory happy hour in the shop.

From April 24-28 business will be anything but usual at Content. Don’t be surprised if you’re asked to pick up a box or two and carry it over the threshold!!

Quietly Training…Not for the Olympics, but for Crazy Daze

Those of you who have followed this website in recent years realize that I take Crazy Daze very seriously.  As you know, I undertake a vigorous training regime in preparation.  This year has been no different, and we’ve held the weekly NAUREP meetings at the Quality Bakery so that I could combine our Regional Economic Analysis with my Alaskan Doughnut Training.

Yeah, Crazy Daze…Alaskan Doughnuts at Quality Bakery.  Oh sure, there’s a whole bunch of other stuff too, like City-Wide Bargains and Sidewalk Sales Galore…and, of course, your family, friends, and neighbors, all gathering together in our community for some good times.  That’s this Thursday, July 26th, in Downtown Northfield, MN.  The Craziness starts at 7:00 a.m.

…and then it gets Tasty.  The (rescheduled) Taste of Northfield officially begins at 4:00 p.m.  But come on down(town) for some of the Craziness and I’ll bet you’ll find a little Tastiness too…maybe around lunchtime.  Oh, and a little later there’s local food, live music, a silent auction, a cash auction, activities for kids, the Sundowners Car Club, and the famous Beer and Wine (Tasting) Tent on the Bridge overlooking the wild and scenic Cannon River.

Carleton College Invests…in Downtown Northfield

Carleton College has invested in downtown Northfield for many years.  The college has supported groups and events that contribute to the downtown’s vitality, college staff and students have given of their time and talent through volunteering for organizations and initiatives that work for the downtown’s vibrancy, and the entire college community has significantly and positively impacted the downtown economy since its founding in 1866.  Now the college is taking their investment to a new level. Continue reading Carleton College Invests…in Downtown Northfield

Making Sense of Social Media: Northfield to Host University of Minnesota Extension Workshop Series

The Northfield Downtown Development Corp. (NDDC), in collaboration with its economic development partners the Northfield Area Chamber of Commerce (Chamber), the Economic Development Authority (EDA), and the Northfield Enterprise Center (NEC), will host the second in a series of University of Minnesota Extension’s workshops. This one will focus on making sense of social media as part of a marketing and sales strategy.


The workshop will be Tuesday, May 15th at the Northfield High School Computer Lab from 7:00 to 9:00 pm. This workshop, titled simply “Making Sense of Social Media”, is a broad strategic review of how businesses can and are using “social media” on the Internet. Social media, FaceBook and Twitter for example, are being used by more and more people, especially young people. Understanding how to use social media is critical for businesses wanting to reach these new customers and leverage their Internet presence using the many available tools, such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Flicker, blogs, and Google Places. Continue reading Making Sense of Social Media: Northfield to Host University of Minnesota Extension Workshop Series