The state’s oldest regional economic development corporation is moving to new ground and is setting up a contest to promote it.
Paul Tuss, executive director of Bear Paw Development Corp ., said in a press release that Bear Paw is holding a drawing for a basket of Montana-made items once its new Facebook page hits 400 “likes.”
Tuss said the social networking site has become a fast, effective way to get information out to people, and Bear Paw will use it to let people know about important happenings in its economic development region.
“It is our goal to utilize this online tool to inform residents of our region about the services we offer, share stories about projects we are working on and inform our Facebook followers about trends and statistics in business development, community vitality and economic diversification,” he said in the release.
Bear Paw Development’s economic development region was recognized by the U.S. Economic Development Administration in 1969.
Since then, the corporation has administered programs to help improve regional economic conditions in Blaine, Chouteau, Hill, Liberty and Phillips counties and the Rocky Boy’s and Fort Belknap Indian reservations.
Bear Paw’s services include providing community planning and community development, administering loan programs, hosting the Havre Small Business Development Center; working on value-added agriculture as a host of the Montana Food and Agriculture Development Center Network; hosting an Environmental Protection Agency Brownfields program to identify and remediate properties containing hazardous substances, pollutants or contaminants; and providing administrative and fiscal support for the St. Mary Rehabilitation Working Group that is working to find ways to repair and rebuild the system that provides much of the water in the Milk River each year.
Once the site hits 400 “likes” — it had more than 300 this morning — one name will be randomly selected to receive a basket of Montana-made items donated by Sweetgrass Music and Phil and Patty Aaberg of Chester.
The basket includes two Sweetgrass Music pint pub glasses, caramels from BeQuet Confections of Bozeman, a slate keychain from Ardosia Stonecraft of Hamilton and three music CDs produced by Sweetgrass Music: “Live From Montana” by Philip Aaberg, “Montana Wild Cats” by Jack Walroth, Philip Aaberg and Kelly Roberti and “Movin’ At Midnight” by Perry and the Pumpers featuring Aaberg, Perry Welsh, Steve Ehrmann and Paul Revelli.
“In order to provide an incentive for folks in northern Montana to like Bear Paw Development on Facebook, we have teamed up with Sweetgrass Music of Chester to offer this unique basket of Montana-themed items that will be enjoyed by one lucky winner,” Tuss said. “It’s the easiest way I can think of to be in the running for some great music, nice gifts and delicious treats, all from Big Sky Country. Plus, no one has to spend a dime. Simply go to http://www.facebook.com and search for Bear Paw Development Corporation and ‘like’ our page to be eligible for this wonderful collection of great gifts.”
Bear Paw Development’s Facebook page can be found at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Bear-Paw-Development-Corporation/434282393281182.