New businesses in Pine City bring jobs and point to economic progress

A recent upturn in new business in Pine City could point to signs of an economic recovery.  The City of Pine City is delighted about the addition of two new businesses that rehabilitated and occupied otherwise vacant buildings, one in the industrial park and the other downtown.

Hoyt Lakes, Minn.-based Premier Plastics, an affiliated business of Premier Pontoons in Wyoming, Minn., purchased the building at 1020 Industrial Street NE (formerly Shafer Electronics) in Pine City’s Technology Park, to manufacture pontoon furniture there.

The president is Bob Menne III and Jamie (Teich) Miklya, a Pine City native, is vice-president of the company, which is branded Leisure Designs, Inc.  20 employees are anticipated to work at Leisure Designs, where they will perform customized, rotational molding and thermoforming of plastic goods which are sold primarily in the marine and recreation industries.

Pine City Mayor Jane Robbins hands a check for $50,000 to President Bob Menne IIII. Photo’d left to right are City Planner Nathan Johnson, Interim City Administrator Kim Moore-Sykes, Menne III, Mayor Robbins, and Vice President Jamie Miklya.

Additionally, Alto Cheese, Inc., owned by Tom Hegge and Alec Demos, is making its home at 300 1st Avenue SE (formerly B&D Repair).  There will be five employees to start and the cheese processing company, which is affiliated with Gourmet Products in adjacent Pine City Township, will add employees as needed.

Both Leisure Designs and Alto Cheese received loans from the City’s revolving loan fund as a part of their respective financing packages.  Each has received $50,000 from the gap financing fund, established by the City’s Economic Development Authority (EDA).  Leisure Designs opened earlier this month and Alto Cheese is planning an October opening.

Pine City Mayor Jane Robbins releases a $50,000 check to Owner Tom Hegge. Photo’d left-to-right are Interim City Administrator Kim Moore-Sykes, Mayor Robbins, Hegge, and City Planner Nathan Johnson

The City of Pine City EDA seeks to improve the economic condition of Pine City. Focusing on appropriate commercial and industrial development, the EDA works to establish a higher tax base and additional job opportunities for the citizens of Pine City. The EDA provides resources and tools, including loans and grants, to support this kind of development.

For more information about the EDA and its incentives, visit or call City Planner Nathan Johnson at (320) 629-2575, ext. 105.


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2 Responses to New businesses in Pine City bring jobs and point to economic progress

  1. Jake Olson says:

    Very cool, is there a URL for the new cheese company? I can’t find them in google or anything.

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