A man camp fit for a king: Public, commissioners tour Dunn County Lodge
DUNN COUNTY - Public patrons flooded the halls of a man camp near Dickinson for the first time Thursday to get a first-hand look at the fanciful accommodations for approximately 300 oil workers.
Boston-based Target Logistics hosted a ribbon cutting ceremony, during which people were free to roam Dunn County Lodge, located north of Dickinson along Highway 22.
Groups of observers admired the building's amenities, while oil workers and company representatives played host and toured curious spectators around the building.
Workers admit the quarters are fit for a king.
"It's probably one of the nicest man camps here," said Washington state native Jed Debord, who moved into Dunn County Lodge three weeks ago. "It's pretty nice."
The camp features single bedrooms that come with a vanity and flat-screen TV. There is also a collection of pool tables, two saunas, poker tables and a cafeteria capable of seating 200.
Debord had no idea what to expect for living quarters when he moved to Dunn County for oil field work.
Upon opening the doors to his new home, he was pleasantly surprised because he had heard "horror stories" depicting North Dakota man camps as unsightly and uncomfortable.
Dunn County Commissioner Daryl Dukart and a few other commissioners attended Thursday's event. Dukart admits he used to have "a lot of doubts" a man camp could be as accommodating as Dunn County Lodge, but he is pleased with how the facility turned out.
"It seems to be managed and run very well," Dukart said, adding that the possibility of another camp is likely.
Commission Chairman Glenn Eckelberg was also impressed with what he saw.
"Now that I've seen (Dunn County Lodge), it's quite an addition to live in," Eckelberg said. "What a welcome sight."
Travis Kelly, regional vice president for Target Logistics, welcomed all in attendance and thanked area residents for their support during the building's construction.
"It was no small feat to let us operate in your area," Kelly said. "We're really happy to be in Dunn County."
After thanking those in attendance, Kelly said Target Logistics will be donating 20 iPads to the Killdeer School Board.
"We're so gracious that you guys let us into your community," Kelly said.
Kelly added that the camp is only half finished. He said Target Logistics plans on completing the structure and hiring 300 more workers by April 15.
In January, Target Logistics President Joe Murphy told The Press he is interested in building another man camp near Dickinson soon.
"We're looking at different locations for a lodge," Murphy said, adding that the company cannot legally break ground until May 31.