Businesses receive development fund dollarsThe drawbridge is dropping and the castle gate is rising after the North Dakota Development Fund recently helped three area businesses with almost $600,000.
The drawbridge is dropping and the castle gate is rising after the North Dakota Development Fund recently helped three area businesses with almost $600,000.
The Enchanted Highway Inc. received $60,450 Regional Rural Revolving Loan Fund from the North Dakota Department of Commerce. The Enchanted Highway President Gary Greff said Friday the money was used to turn the former Regent school into “The Enchanted Castle.”
The Enchanted Highway features seven of the world’s largest metal sculptures, which were built by Greff.
The $500,000 project will transform the school into a 24-room hotel which will look like a castle, Greff said. The castle-like hotel is set to lower its drawbridge May 1.
“The Enchanted Castle” couldn’t have started without the loan, Greff said.
“A bank wasn’t going to loan us the money to do the castle in Regent because they didn’t believe in it enough,” he said.
Regent Mayor Terry Hartman said the city needed something to attract visitors other than The Enchanted Highway, which extends 32 miles from Interstate 94 at the Gladstone exit to Regent.
“Everybody says they travel down The Enchanted Highway and there is no place for them to stay,” he said. “I think it will be a good attraction to people.”
Like The Enchanted Highway, Hartman said he hopes The Enchanted Castle is a tourist attraction. Greff built the hotel for visitors and hunters, but he said he wouldn’t deny business to an oil field company.
The Theodore Roosevelt Medora Foundation also received $30,000 from the North Dakota Development Fund. Though TRMF President Randy Hatzenbuhler said he wasn’t sure where the money was being used, he said any amount helps.
“The Medora Foundation over the years, probably about 90-plus percent of support has come from individuals and corporations,” he said. “Occasionally there have been some grant programs we have been able to access, and they have been important to help finish projects off.”
Killdeer Mountain Manufacturing in Killdeer also received $300,000 from the fund. A KMM representative was unavailable for comment Friday.