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R E A D E R S’ C H Best of the Lakes Area 2016


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Best of the Lakes Area 2016

The votes are in. The people have spoken. The best have been chosen. R E A D E R S’ C H OI


Jody Hanson Publisher

Echo Press • (320) 763-3133 A publication of the Echo Press Special Projects: Jessica Sly Cover photo: Lowell Anderson Layout and Design: Rae Betterman

What does it mean to be the best? It means you’re a leader, a champion, a pioneer. It means you’re the jewel of the crown, the cream of the crop, the crème de la crème. And you, our valued readers, have selected the best of the best. The Lakes Area is home to some of the best establishments and individuals around, everything from eats and arts to shops, services and providers. The 2016 Best of the Lakes Area is a chance to celebrate them and to celebrate the diversity, the success and the dynamic community of Douglas County. When we at the Echo Press invited the Lakes Area to give credit to your favorites, you didn’t disappoint. Hundreds of you responded to the call. Without you, this opportunity to recognize the greats of our community wouldn’t be possible. Throughout the pages of this magazine, you’ll learn about many of the people and businesses who consistently pave the way for a county full of growth and unity. You judged. You voted. These are your 2016 Best of the Lakes Area.

Contact your Echo Press Multi-Media consultant to reserve Contact your Echo Press Multi-Media consultant for all yourtoday advertising needs. your space!



Andy Erickson 320-763-1226 arerickson@

LeSha Massmann Izzy Rusch 320-763-1225 lmassmann@

320-763-1227 irusch@

Thank you

Shelly Beaulieu 320-763-1212 sbeaulieu@

Randy Jansen

320-763-1224 rjansen@


Karen Jennissen, Sales Assistant


320-763-1215 kjennissen@

for voting us your #1 Website!

PO Box 549 | 225 7th Ave. East Alexandria, MN 56308 320.763.3133 Best of the Lakes Area 2016


Reader’s Choice



How you voted ...

k s n i r D & s Eat Bakery




Fast Food


Bloody Mary

Fine Dining






Happy Hour

Sandwich Shop


Ice Cream




Outdoor Dining





Liquor Store

1st – Roers Family Bakery 2nd – Elden’s Fresh Foods

1st – DJ’s Tap House 2nd – Angelina’s Restaurant and Bar

1st – DJ’s Tap House 2nd – D. Michael B.’s

1st – Jan’s Place 2nd – Travelers Inn

1st – DJ’s Tap House 2nd – Raapers Eatery and Ale

1st – Great Hunan 2nd – China Buffet

1st – Caribou Coffee 2nd – Dunn Brothers Coffee

1st – Elden’s Fresh Foods 2nd – Cub Foods

1st – Doolittles Woodfire Grill 2nd – Travelers Inn


1st – McDonald’s 2nd – Culver’s

1st – Culver’s 2nd – Jimmy John’s

1st – Doolittles Woodfire Grill 2nd – Bello Cucina

1st – McDonald’s 2nd – DJ’s Tap House

1st – Raapers Eatery and Ale 2nd – DJ’s Tap House

1st – Dairy Queen 2nd – Culver’s

1st – Bello Cucina 2nd – Angelina’s Restaurant and Bar

1st – Rudy’s Redeye Grill 2nd – Elks Lodge

1st – Mi Mexico 2nd – Qdoba

1st – Zorbaz 2nd – Pizza Ranch

1st – Doolittles Woodfire Grill 2nd – D. Michael B.’s

1st – Corral Saloon and Eatery 2nd – Tennessee Roadhouse

1st – Jimmy John’s 2nd – Subway

1st – Doolittles Woodfire Grill 2nd – La Ferme

1st – Zorbaz 2nd – Bug-A-Boo Bay

1st – Stephanie Gaulrapp of Doolittles 2nd – DJ’s Tap House staff

1st – Cash Wise Liquor 2nd – Downtown Liquor Best of the Lakes Area 2016

Shopping Antiques

Downtown Shopping




Building Supplies

1st – Yesterdays 2nd – Past and Present Home Gallery

1st – Kindred People 2nd – Magpie


1st – Arnquist Carpet Plus 2nd – Cullen’s Home Center

Car Dealership

1st – Alexandria Motors 2nd – Juettner Motors

Used Car Dealership 1st – Juettner Motors 2nd – Diamond Buick

Car Wash

1st – Woody’s Car Wash 2nd – Mills Fleet Farm

1st – Magpie 2nd – Kindred People

1st – Anderson Florist and Greenhouse 2nd – Colorful Seasons Garden Center


1st – Cullen’s Home Center 2nd – Douglas Furniture

1st – Ace Hardware 2nd – Menards

1st – Menards 2nd – Hilltop Lumber


1st – Karrow Jewelers 2nd – Hedine Jewelry

Gas Station/Convenience Store

Sporting Goods/ Outdoors/Boating


Thrift Store/Discount Store

Meat Market

Tattoo Parlor

1st – Holiday 2nd – Cenex

1st – Elden’s Fresh Foods 2nd – Cub Foods

1st – Lake Country Meats 2nd – Miltona Meats

1st – Dunham’s Sports 2nd – Mills Fleet Farm

1st – Goodwill 2nd – Someplace Safe

1st – RM Tattoo 2nd – TNT Tattoo

Customer Service 1st – Bell Bank 2nd – Target

Thank You ...

Lakes Area Readers ~ You are the Best! Thanks for voting. The choice was yours. Winners of the 2016 Best of the Lakes Area Chamber Bucks Patricia Gould, Alexandria Lois Swanson, Garfield Roberta Strom, Kensington Best of the Lakes Area 2016


Fitness & h t l a e H Chiropractor

1st – Godfrey Chiropractic and Wellness 2nd – HealthSource Chiropractic


1st – Prairie Lakes Dental 2nd – Einerson Family Dentistry


Golf Course


Massage Therapist

1st – Dr. Deb Dittbener of Alex Clinic 2nd – Dr. Jennessa Warzecha of Alex Clinic 1st – Trumm Drug 2nd – Target/CVS

Rehabilitation Facility

Eye Doctor

1st – Eye Associates of Alexandria 2nd – Randy’s Family Optical

1st – Heartland Orthopedic Specialists 2nd – Knute Nelson

1st – Geneva Golf Course 2nd – Alexandria Golf Club

1st – Sarah Roers of Ella’s Salon 2nd – Michelle Lien of Living Tree Massage

Tanning Salon

1st – iBeach Tan and Nails 2nd – Allure Tan and Spa

Fitness Club

1st – Alexandria Area YMCA 2nd – Snap Fitness

nment Arts & Entertai Lakeside Destination

1st – Arrowwood Resort and Conference Center 2nd – Bug-A-Boo Bay

Local Celebrity

1st – Brock Lesnar 2nd – Tom Lehman

Local Theater

1st – Alexandria Area Arts Association Theatre 2nd – Midway Cinema 9


Local Singer/Band

Local Sports Star

Local Artist

Local Park

1st – Blonde & the Bohunk 2nd – Alisa Star

1st – Leanne Larson of Art Bar 39 2nd – Alisa Star

1st – Tom Lehman 2nd – Brock Lesnar

1st – Alexandria City Park 2nd – Noonan Park

Local Sporting Event

1st – Alexandria Blizzard 2nd – Viking Speedway

Best of the Lakes Area 2016

Services Accountant

Hair Salon/Barber

Real Estate Company/Agent


Home Builder

Retirement Community

Auto Care


Memory Care Facility

1st – Silbernick Accounting, Inc. 2nd – Alex Tax and Business Services

1st – Chris Karpan 2nd – Tom Klecker

1st – Cenex 2nd – Tiremaxx

Tire Store

1st – Tiremaxx 2nd – Cenex

Bank/Credit Union 1st – Bremer Bank 2nd – Bell Bank

Child Care

1st – Alexandria Area YMCA 2nd – Little Learners Academy


1st – ServiceMaster 2nd – Grothe ProSteam


1st – Ellingson Plumbing, Heating, A/C and Electrical 2nd – Lennes Bros. Electric

1st – Ella’s Salon 2nd – Salon LaBelle

1st – Northwoods Construction 2nd – HighPoint Homes

1st – Arrowwood Resort and Conference Center 2nd – Holiday Inn

Insurance Agent

1st – Counselor Realty 2nd – Randy Fischer Real Estate

1st – Knute Nelson/Grand Arbor 2nd – Ecumen Bethany Community

1st – Ecumen Bethany Community 2nd – Knute Nelson


1st – Soderholm Insurance 2nd – Martinson Insurance

1st – Lakes Area Humane Society 2nd – United Way of Douglas and Pope Counties


Website (Local)

Pet Care/Grooming

Best Small Company to Work For


Best Large Company to Work For

1st – Colorful Seasons Garden Center 2nd – Alex Irrigation and Landscaping

1st – Alexandria Veterinary Clinic 2nd – Douglas County Animal Hospital

1st – Ellingson Plumbing, Heating, A/C and Electrical 2nd – Greeley Plumbing, Heating and A/C

1st – Echo Press 2nd – Voice of Alexandria

1st – Ella’s Salon 2nd – Bell Bank

1st – Douglas Machine 2nd – 3M

Garbage Service

1st – Alex Rubbish and Recycling 2nd – West Central Sanitation

Best of the Lakes Area 2016


Bakery Roers Family Bakery (320) 763-4741 430 Broadway St., Alexandria “Being sweet to you is our business.” And Rory Roers, who owns Roers Family Bakery with his wife, June, said, “You can take the sweet part however you want!” Rory and June bought the bakery in 1995, but Rory said he’s been working in the backroom since 1978. And even though the Roers purchased it in 1995, the name change didn’t come until 2001. “We changed the name,” Rory said with a laugh, “when we ran out of bags with the Braun’s Bakery name on them.” Currently, there are four full-time employees, Rory and June, along with their two sons, Casey and Quincy, and two part-time employees. The busiest time of year for the bakery, Rory said, is during the summer months with all the summer visitors and summer residents. During that time, Rory said the bakery goes through a ton of flour each week.

According to the Roers, they are famous for their muffin bread, which is shipped all over the country, and for their world-famous creamhorns. The Roers have been making the same creamhorns for years, although Rory said they did go through a period of trial and error when the shortening they used became unavailable. Rory said an interesting fact that people may not know about is that shortening isn’t the same. He has at least six or seven different shortenings and that each one is designed to do something different. As for why they were voted a fan favorite in the Alexandria Lakes Area, Rory believes it’s because they try not to use any preservatives and that “if it’s sold at Roers, it’s made at Roers.”

Thank you for voting us

We are your

p o h S p o t S ne

O for all your needs!


It’s a privilege serving you.

Our Full Service Auto Center can help you get your car running smoothly - or if it’s tires you need, we can help there too. We will gain your trust with our honesty and service!




Cenex Convenience Store Auto & Tire Service



1705 Broadway, Alexandria, MN • 320-763-6557 Best of the Lakes Area 2016


Thanks for voting us the # 1 flooring store in the lakes area!



320-763-8050 805 1st Ave E Alexandria, MN 56308



ar y Bloody M Burger DJ’s Tap House (320) 335-2206 3007 Highway 29 S., Alexandria Opened in August 2015, DJ’s Tap House celebrates one-year in business with a vote for being a favorite in the Lakes Area in three different categories – favorite bar, favorite Bloody Mary and favorite burger.

Known for their hand-pattied black angus beef burgers and plenty of choices of craft beer, DJ’s is getting a reputation for its Sunday Bloody Mary. Only 25 of these are served each week and include everything from the typical beef stick, olives and celery to the not-so-typical bacon, chicken wing, cheese curds, potsticker, burger, grilled cheese and more. Serving only a limited number of Bloody Marys each week is what keeps the drive for this Lakes Area favorite going. DJ’s Tap House offers lunch and dinner with a variety of items including appetizers, burgers, sandwiches, soups and salads and lavash with havarti cheese.

Thanks for choosing us the Best of the Lakes Area!







Monday & Wednesday 8am - 5pm From left to right - Dr. John Hoven, Dr. Jenna Kryder, Tuesday & Thursday 9am - 7pm Dr. Melissa Hoven, Dr. Carie Stotesbery, Dr. Jeremy Anderson Friday 7:30am - 4pm 1610 Broadway St • Alexandria, MN

Thank you for voting us

Across From Douglas County Hospital

BEST BOUTIQUE and 2nd place Downtown Shopping



Best Drive Thru and Best Fries!

111 6th Ave E Alexandria 320.219.7880




Thank you for your vote!

North: 853 MN-29 N, Alexandria South: 4910 MN-29 S, Alexandria Best of the Lakes Area 2016





320-763-4556 1701 S Broadway • Alexandria, MN Follow us on...

Top Rated



3007 Hwy 29 South Suite 103 Alexandria, MN 56308

(320) 335-2206 Hours: Sunday - Thursday 11am-11pm Friday and Saturday 11am-Midnight Full Menu Everyday until 11pm Happy Hour: $3 off all apps, 4-6pm and 9-11pm Check us out on..


#1 for

• burgers • bloody mary’s • bar atmosphere


#2 for

• Fries • employees • happy hour



Breakfast Jan’s Place (320) 763-3877 612 Third Ave. W., Alexandria Known for its homemade blueberry pancakes, Jan’s Place celebrated 15 years in business this past February. Owner Jan Zarbok said the pancakes are definitely a favorite but that customers really like all of their breakfast items and their lunch items, too, including all of the homemade soups. Zarbok described the pancakes, which are homemade from scratch, as light and fluffy and deliciously good. Zarbok’s 12 employees include three sets of siblings. Over the years, that has happened frequently as Zarbok said she likes to recruit from the families who frequent the restaurant that she gets to know. She said one sibling will start working and then the next and then the next. “My employees are like my extended family,” she said. “Everyone is supportive and we get along great. We even hang out together outside of work.”

Thank You

for Choosing US as Your Favorite Karaoke Spot!



Members of Zarbok’s “real” family also work at the restaurant. She said her daughter currently works there and her two sons also worked there while they were in school. A combination of good, quality food along with a friendly, homey atmosphere is the reason Zarbok believes Jan’s Place was voted as best in the Lakes Area. “I love my customers. I have amazing, faithful customers. They are supportive and it’s fun to celebrate with them,” Zarbok said. “And my staff, I have an amazing staff. We love to welcome our customers with open arms and we like to think they are treated well when they come here!”

Thank You for voting us the

#1 Hotspsot for Breakfast in the Lakes Area


DJ/ Karaoke every Friday & Saturday


Breakfast, lunch & dinner daily

5637 MN-29, Alexandria, MN 56308 001502326r1

best steaks in town | walleye | pasta | sandwiches | famous pizza


Best of the Lakes Area 2016


Best of the Lakes Area 2016


Chinese Great Hunan (320) 763-6288 | 2919 Highway 29 S., Alexandria Great Hunan in Alexandria, which opened in 1993, is dedicated to offering the most memorable dining experience to its guests. The dishes offered there, including the sesame chicken, sweet and sour chicken, beef teriyaki, mo shu pork, shrimp egg foo young and so many more, are made from family recipes. The owners and their eight employees who work at Great Hunan love to greet their customers with the warmest welcome, whether you are a frequent guest or are there for the first time. The restaurant offers a wide variety of appetizers, soups, fried rice, chow mein, chop suey, lo mein, egg foo young, house specials and plenty of pork, chicken, beef and seafood dishes.

Thank you for your votes for the Area’s Best Chiropractor

Specials Daily: Monday - Tuesday: Lunch Specials #1 - #13

$5.99 Wednesday Special: Lunch Fajitas

Thanks for voting for us for the Best Mexican!

Changing the Way You View Chiropractic

108 15th Ave. E, Alexandria, MN 56308 14


(320) 762-1110


$6.99 Thursday Special: Lime Margaritas

all day $2.99 Super Burritos


HOURS: MON. - SAT. 11-10 | SUN. 11-9 401 N Nokomis St, Alexandria | 320-759-5686

Best of the Lakes Area 2016


tore Grocery S Elden’s Fresh Foods (320) 763-3446 707 Third Ave. E., Alexandria If you’re looking for a great deli or grocery store, then take a look at Elden’s Fresh Foods. With a complete bakery and deli, it hosts the largest produce department in town and offers certified black Angus beef, along with pork, chicken and value-added products. The main focus of its more than 180 employees is on the customer. Their goal is to have the freshest products and work hard to be friendly and courteous to make it a pleasant shopping experience. As an independent supermarket that’s had a personal stake in the community since 1982, it is committed to offering its customers the best value for their food dollar and offers the best quality products at the best possible prices.

Thank You #1 Deli

for voting us


Our Deli is Deliciously Different!

in the lakes area!

Fresh Platters for every occasion Rotisserie Chicken | Fresh Salads Box Lunches | Catering Olive Bar | Sushi | Hot Lunches Fried Chicken

and Friendly, Helpful Staff!

Only store in town that is LOCALLY OWNED & OPERATED

E IC R E A D E R S’ C H O Best of the Lakes Area 2016

Open 24 hours a day | 7 days a week! 320-763-3446 • Corner of 3rd & Nokomis, Alexandria


Restaurant Dessert Soup Fine Dining Doolittles Woodfire Grill (320) 759-0885 4409 Highway 29 S., Alexandria When customers walk into Doolittles Woodfire Grill, they are greeted by a casual atmostphere and a unique display of aviation memorabilia, but what they might not know is that it started as a humble little restaurant in Burnsville in 1981. Lynn Reimer established the restaurant because of his passion for flying, including building and piloting aircraft. He built a second restaurant in Eagan and ultimately converted it into Doolittles Woodfire Grill in 1989. The Alexandria location opened in 2001. The goal of Doolittles, according to chief operating officer and co-owner John Sheehan, is to create the best dining experience for any occasion. They do this by first focusing on the product, with a chef-inspired and created menu that includes “spectacular meals that are very approchable.” Second, Sheehan said that the company wouldn’t be anywhere without its staff, which pushes for great service and a love for hospitality, whether that’s serving food, busing tables or taking photos for customers. “It’s an incredible privilege to make that memory happen,” Sheehan said. Though Doolittles secured the Best Of designation for both soup and dessert, Sheehan had a difficult time deciding which was the best on the menu. “That’s like picking one of my children,” he said. “We have a cultlike following to our butternut squash soup … our chicken wild rice has also done really well. It’s tough to pick.” As for dessert, he said the mudslide pie has been on the menu for more than 25 years. It’s unique in that it is used for Doolittles’ Citizen for Life Campaign in which $1 of every dessert that’s sold is used to give back to the community.


Best of the Lakes Area 2016


...from casual to special... proudly serving Alexandria for 15 years!

Thank you for voting us #1! Best Restaurant Best Soup Best Fine Dining Best Dessert Best Server - Stephanie Gaulrapp 320-759-0885 | Hwy 94 & Hwy 29 S Best of the Lakes Area 2016



Fast Food


Culver’s (320) 763-2266 610 50th Ave. W., Alexandria

McDonald’s “I’m Lovin’ It”

(320) 763-5070 | 4910 Highway 29 S., Alexandria (320) 759-7272 | 853 Highway 29 N., Alexandria Voted as the Lakes Area favorite drive-thru and French fries, McDonald’s has two locations in Alexandria to serve its customers, one on the south side of town and one on the north side of town. Between the two locations, there are about 100 employees. The south side location was opened in 1975, while the north side location, which was recently completely remodeled, was opened in 2000. As for why McDonald’s was voted as a favorite in the Lakes Area, General Manager Dennis Poepping said, “We put a lot of focus on our drive-thru and invest in the equipment to make it successful.” As for the fries, Poepping said, “They are McDonald’s world-famous fries!”


Thank You - Voted Best Sporting Goods / Outdoors / Boating Store!

Big Names.....Low Prices.

20% OFF


Culver’s has a promise: Every guest who chooses Culver’s leaves happy. Many happy diners selected Culver’s, which was built in Alexandria in 2003, as the Best Fast Food Restaurant in the Lakes Area. The company’s roots go back to 1984 when Craig and Lea Culver, along with Craig’s parents, George and Ruth, opened the first Culver’s in Sauk City, Wisconsin. Since then, the Culver’s family has grown to nearly 600 restaurants. There are 40 team members working in the Alexandria restaurant. Every meal is handcrafted and prepared fresh, only after it’s ordered. It serves its famous ButterBurgers and Frozen Custard with a smile. Guests can dine in or use the convenient drive-through. Culver’s often scoops custard at community events and activities in the area. Also, its “Thank You Farmers” campaign supports local FFA chapters.

Thank You

We value your support and trust as we care for those with memory loss.




Regular Price Of Any One Item In Stock With Coupon

*Excludes: Firearms, ammunition, licenses, select Asics, Nike, Perception, & TaylorMade product. GoPro, Merrell footwear, Oakley, Ray-Ban, Spyder, TenPoint, Terrain Blinds, Ugg, Under Armour, Yeti, Columbia, Garmin, tennis balls, Titleist balls, bats over $149.98, KL Pro 120 boat /trailer, augers, shanties, bulk deer corn, Esky coolers, GPS/fish finders, motors, marine batteries, motorized vehicles, gift cards. Not valid for online purchases. Cannot be used with another offer, coupon, current sale or clearance item. Only one coupon per item. One coupon per customer. Not valid on previous purchases. Void if copied. Not for resale.



Coupon Expires November 23, 2016.


Viking Plaza • Alexandria (320) 763-5005 1020 Lark Street, Alexandria 320-762-1576


Best of the Lakes Area 2016

Ice Cream Dairy Queen

“Fan food, not fast food.” (320) 763-4556 1701 Broadway St., Alexandria Dairy Queen on Broadway opened its doors in Alexandria in 1969. Four years ago, the restaurant known for its tasty ice cream treats, was changed over to a Dairy Queen Grill and Chill and serves up not only tasty frozen treats, but hot food items including burgers, sandwiches, baskets, fries and more. Its great treats and great food is why it was voted as one of the Best of the Lakes Area favorites.


Alex Lakes Area!

T h a n k s for Choosing us as

BEST GOLF COURSE in the Lakes Area!

There’s no place we’d rather


27 Championship Holes A “Must Play!!!” • 27 Championship Holes • Head Golf Professional Grant Hanson • Assistant Golf Professionals Emily Roering and Brady Swedberg • Lodging Packages with golf on site • GPS on all carts • Scott Dirck Golf Academy is one of the top ranked golf Academies in Minnesota with year round teaching and training facilities.

Join our growing Team!


Visit to explore our current opportunities!

Email: Web: Geneva Golf Club is located 3 miles east on Hwy. 82, then north on Liberty Road about 1 mile. Open To The Public





Pro Shop: 320-762-7089 001502574r1

Best of the Lakes Area 2016


Italian Bello Cucina

“Come as guests, leave as friends.” (320) 219-7885 319 Broadway St., Alexandria Bello Cucina in Alexandria offers “a taste of old world Italy” and encourages diners to “come as guests, leave as friends.” Alexandria Lakes Area residents agree, voting Bello Cucina as the Best Italian restaurant. The first Bello Cucina was opened in May of 2006 in Morris, which unfortunately had a damaging fire Labor Day weekend and will take some time to open after an extensive remodeling project. In all, there are six Bello Cucinas. Bello Cucina employs between 120 to 150 people, depending on the time of year. The restaurant caters to any occasion and offers banquet service depending on the location. The Alexandria location has private dining for up to 99 people on the second level without any additional booking fees. A fun fact about Bello Cucina: All of its desserts are homemade. On the menu, it holds a place for a “dessert feature,” which is a competition between its chefs at each

location and company-wide. Founder and executive chef Jason Mueller sets a calendar of 12 months, each with a different focus, and it’s up to each restaurant’s executive chef to use his or her creativity to explore desserts with a particular flavor in mind. Flavors to look for in the coming months: November – pumpkin, December – peppermint, January – French vanilla, February – red velvet, March – Irish cream, and more to come.

Best of the Lakes Area winner




for Best Italian and Runner-up for Fine Dining

Best of West Central MN Readers Choice Winner for Best Wine and Most Romantic

Receive 10% back in a promotional gift card on every dollar spent on gift cards

(Example: Buy $20 gift card and receive $2, Buy $40 gift card and receive $4)

6 locations to choose from: Alexandria 319 Broadway St. Alexandria, MN 56308 320-219-7885

Fergus Falls 106 West Lincoln Ave. Fergus Falls, MN 56537 218-998-2221

St. Joseph 15 East Minnesota St. # 101 St. Joseph, MN 56374 320-363-4534

Spicer 194 Progress Way Spicer, MN 56288 320-796-0203

Marshall 100 College Drive Marshall, MN 56258 507-337-6600

Morris 506 Atlantic Morris, Mn 56267 320-585-7000 001499038r1


Best of the Lakes Area 2016

e Liquor Stor

Karaoke Rudy’s Redeye Grill

Cash Wise Liquor

(320) 763-6577 5637 Highway 29 S., Alexandria

(320) 762-2524 801 N. Nokomis St. NE, Alexandria

Chris Reed, general manager of Rudy’s Redeye Grill at the Holiday Inn, said customers have been singing karaoke at Rudy’s since about 2003. He said there are two full-time DJs and that the restaurant is looking to hire another one. Karaoke fun can be found at Rudy’s on Friday nights starting at 9 p.m. There is a liveBlack DJ both Friday and Saturday nights starting at 9 p.m. PMS 188 “We have a good system now,” Reed said. “There are at least 24,000 songs guests can choose from. There is everything from show tunes to country and from pop to death metal. There really is a broad range of music to choose from and people really seem to enjoy it.” Reed said Rudy’s used to contract its karaoke out, but because of its popularity still, the restaurant decided to purchase its own equipment last December. The system, he said, is upgraded and updated and is a “much better” system. Guests can download an app on their smartphone – Karafun – on which they can request songs.

A part of Coborn’s Incorporated, the Alexandria location of Cash Wise Liquor opened in 2011. As for why they’re best when it comes to liquor, it all comes down to the people working at the store. The 17 employees take great pride in what they do and do everything they can to make the store fun and accommodating. Cash Wise naturally stocks a wide range of liquor, but it also assists

customers in carrying purchases to their cars, gift wrapping and customer requests. Its mission is to empower employee owners to create unique shopping experiences, anticipate needs and exceed expectations for their guests.



Thank you for voting us the BEST Home Builder!

In choosing Northwoods Construction you can rest assured knowing that your custom built home or remodeling projects will be completed on time and of the highest quality. We take great pride in making sure the homeowner who trusts us with their future, is given the best service available by the highest industry standard.

Best of the Lakes Area 2016

“GOOD NEIGHBORS YOU’VE COME TO TRUST” “Local Family Owned for over 38 Years!” (800) 246-7630 •


Our goal at Northwoods Construction is to provide our customers with honest, quality service. We strive for customer satisfaction by developing quality relationships with our customers. We look forward to the opportunity to work with you in meeting your new home, remodel or maintenance needs.


Mexican Mi Mexico (320) 759-5686 410 N. Nokomis St., Alexandria

Located on the north side of town, Mi Mexico opened its doors in Alexandria in 2009. Offering a wide variety of Tex-Mex and authentic Mexican food, Mi Mexico also boasts a full bar. Serving lunch and dinner, customers can find favorites such as burritos, fajitas, enchiladas and tacos, along with authentic Mexican dishes such as Torta, Mojarra Frita, Coctel de Camaron and Caldo de Mariscos. It offers some American fare as well, such a variety of chicken dishes, and a kids menu offers tacos and enchiladas along with a hot dog, burger and chicken tenders. Many of the dishes available at Mi Mexico are made from family recipes.


ining Outdoor D Zorbaz (320) 219-7813 locationz/alexandria 2710 N. Nokomis St. NE, Alexandria Zorbaz is a go-to in summertime, and for good reason. The restaurant is known for its pizza but also the outdoor dining atmosphere and the docks that allow patrons to park their boats, Jet Skis and planes while they eat. The Alexandria location opened in 2013 and employs 30 in the winter and 60 in the summer due to the influx in restaurant goers during the summer months. A fun fact about Zorbaz? You won’t see any of the letter “S” in the restaurant. Instead, the letter “Z” populates its text. “Our alphabet only has 25 letters,” Zorbaz owner Kevin Hanson said.




Best of the Lakes Area 2016

Thank you for choosing us as your favorite

211 Broadway, Alexandria 320-762-1111


REAL ESTATE COMPANY , we are honored!

HOME COURSE OF TOM LEHMAN Congratulations Tom Lehman from Alexandria Golf Club on being voted the Lakes Area

“Best Local Sports Star” Tom’s professional golfing accomplishments include: Professional Tournaments •Open Championship - Winner (1996) •US Open - 2nd place (1996) •Masters - 2nd place (1994) •Charles Schwab Cup Champion (2011, 2012) •Ryder Cup Team Member (1995, 1997, 1999) •Presidents Cup Team Member (1994, 1996, 2000) •Multiple PGA & Champions Tour Wins Professional Distinctions •PGA Tour Player of the Year (1996) •World Player of the Year (1996) •Ranked Number One in the World Golf Rankings (1997) • Player of the Year (1991) •Champions Tour Player of the Year (2011, 2012) •Payne Stewart Award Winner (2010) •Byron Nelson Award Winner (1996) •American Ryder Cup Team Captain (2006) •American Ryder Cup Team Vice Captain (2010, 2016)

We appreciate Tom’s involvement and continued support of AGC For membership information Call: 320.763.3605

Email: Web: 001503940r1

Best of the Lakes Area 2016


Q Ribs / BB Corral Saloon and Eatery

Corral Saloon and Eatery’s ribs are some of the best. Its food isn’t from a bag or box. Rather, everything is homemade and home cooked, and according to owner Sue Hawkinson, it’s the same little 82-year-old lady who has been making the rib sauce for more than 50 years. The ribs are high-quality, they’re cooked well and they’re consistent, keeping people coming back for more. On top of that, the Corral cooks up full dinners, with catering and banquets offered on the side. With more than 60 years under its belt, the Corral has become one of the go-to dining spots in the area.

(320) 762-2416 117 Nelson St., Nelson

ho p Sandwich S Jimmy John’s

“Freaky Fast! Freaky Fresh!” (320) 762-8911 4617 Highway 29 S., Alexandria Thirty seconds is all is takes for Jimmy John’s 20 employees to create a sandwich masterpiece that’s both freaky fast and freaky fresh. The Alexandria Jimmy John’s, which opened in 2007, prides itself on speed and quality.

aitress Waiter/W Stephanie Gaulrapp of Doolittles Woodfire Grill


Jimmy John’s uses locally purchased vegetables in its sandwiches, as well as fresh meats and cheese that are brought in daily. The bread used is baked fresh daily in the store. In addition to in-shop sandwiches, Jimmy John’s offers delivery and catering for events of any size.

Hard-working. Traveler. Experienced. Humble. All this and more describes Stephanie Gaulrapp of Alexandria, who was named the Best Waitress in the Lakes Area. She grew up in Sauk Centre and started out at a small family-owned restaurant washing dishes, working her way up to server. In her four years at Doolittles Woodfire Grill, Gaulrapp has done a little bit of everything, from training new servers to closing to bartending to serving. “I love talking with people and getting to know everybody,” she said. “It’s crazy how much you

get to know them and then you see them outside of work too and get to connect with them.” Gaulrapp also works for Soderholm Insurance in accounting and marketing and is going to school to be an elementary school teacher. Though she’s young, she has accrued a wealth of experience in the workplace and with an Associate of Applied Sciences degree in marketing. The designation, she said, feels great. “To get something like that just shows that I love what I do and put in 110 percent.”

Best of the Lakes Area 2016

Dr. Deborah Dittberner 2016 Top Physician

Dr. Jennessa Warzecha Second Place, 2016 Top Physician

...andalsoSilver Congratulations to our Lakes Area Top Physicians! Our very own Dr. Deborah Dittberner from Alexandria Clinic was voted the 2016 Top Physician in the Lakes Area by readers like you.

Best of the Lakes Area 2016

And Dr. Jennessa Warzecha, also from Alexandria Clinic, came in with second place (and the “silver” medal).

If you’ve ever met either of these caring, talented physicians, you know why. And if you’ve ever come to Alexandria Clinic, you’re not surprised.

Our clinic is filled with outstanding professionals who go above and beyond to serve our neighbors here in the heartland.


Antiques Yesterdays (320) 762-8990 517 Broadway St., Alexandria Located in the heart of downtown Alexandria, Yesterdays, which is “not your typical antique store,” was opened in 1994. Yesterdays’ edge, according to owner Ron Moritz, is not only having a great variety of antiques, but also all the little extra things that complement them. “A new generation of customers are tuned into Pinterest, HGTV and television shows like Fixer Upper, and we get that,” Moritz said. “And we’ve responded to what they are looking for.” Yesterdays offers a wide variety of items ranging from vintage antiques and furniture to repurposed, recycled and reinvented furniture to clothing, jewelry and unique decorating items.

Congratulations Counselor Realty! We are honored to be amongst such g�eat company! Thanks to those that voted for us we are ver� g�atef�l. We love what we do!

“We also purchase items, help determine values or give suggestions that might work for what you are trying to sell,” Moritz said. “Our inventory changes on a daily basis and we try to keep things fresh and on trend.” After 23 years in business, Moritz said, “We have developed many loyal customers and a reputation to inspire them with unique ideas for their homes. We love to create and we love what we do!”

Thank you for your vote/nomination and thank you for this community’s participation and support in the Arts. -Leanne Larson Art Bar 39 is located at the Viking Plaza mall

“We offer a creative place for guests to sip, socialize and be inspired ” • Traveling Paint & Sip Parties


Thank You for Voting us

#1 in Landscaping/ Garden Center 1121 Broadway, Alexandria, MN 56308 320.762.1050 001499092r1






“the needs of the client come first…”

Stop by & See our new Products!

3400 Dakota Street, Alexandria


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Best of the Lakes Area 2016

Boutique Kindred People (320) 219-7880 111 Sixth Ave. E., Alexandria Started in 2015, Kindred People is on a mission to create a welcoming shop that celebrates unique fashion and locally made artisan gifts. The boutique, located in downtown Alexandria on Sixth Avenue, boasts four employees and offers a variety of clothing, shoes, accessories and gifts. The name Kindred People comes from the special bond between the mother and daughter duo that owns the boutique – sharing a love of cute clothes, local art and fun shopping experiences. Their hope was to create a shop that included other “kindred people” who enjoy these things, too. When asked why they thought they were named the Best Boutique, Kelly Falk, the daughter of the motherdaughter duo, said, “We believe this yet again shows

how awesome our customers are. They are always so kind and happy when they visit and continually choose to shop local.” Falk also said that it means a lot to both her and her mother, Marceia Andreasen, that their customers took the time to vote for them. And she also gave a huge shout out to their employees. “We also have very talented and creative employees who show a dedication to customer service that is above and beyond. We’re so lucky to have them.”

for making us

Alex Echo Press Readers’ Choice Awards voted Cash Wise Liquor the # in the following category

1 Best

Best Liquor Store View our ads online at HOURS: Monday-Saturday 8am-10pm 801 North Nokomis St. NE, Alexandria • 320-762-2524 REA 001502336r1

Best of the Lakes Area 2016





looring Carpet/F Arnquist Carpets Plus (320) 763-8050 805 First Ave. E., Alexandria

Car Dealer Alexandria Motor Company (320) 762-2114, 1-800-568-5944 3710 Highway 29 S., Alexandria

Mission statement:

“To be so effective that we are able to be helpful to others.”

ealer Used Car D Juettner Motors (320) 763-3126 1900 S. Broadway St., Alexandria

“We over-charge every third customer, so we can pass the savings on to you.” From humble beginnings as a hardware store in Hoffman in 1930, Arnquist Carpet Plus has grown into a fourth generation business specializing in flooring. Its show room is full of the latest samples, and its seven staff members have the knowledge and know-how to help each customer that walks through the door, whether for sales or installation. Arnquist seeks to treat you and your projects like one of their own. On top of all types of flooring – wood tile, carpet, vinyl, laminate and installation – it also offers design consultation.

Alexandria Motor Company’s 55 employees are committed to aiding their customers and the community as a whole. Since 2011, the company has raised more than $11,000 for families in need during the holidays. “One of our favorite things we do for our community is partner with Jingle Bells for our Cruzin’ for Toys Toy Drive,” employee Brooke Steinbring said. “Every November, we purchase $20 worth of toys for every new and used vehicle sold. We fill up truck beds in our showroom full of toys and deliver them to Jingle Bells the beginning of December, and they bring them to families in need in our community.”

When it comes to their customer service, employees at Alexandria Motor Company do their best to get customers excited about a new or used vehicle. The company provides a no-pressure, hassle-free environment with a non-commissioned sales staff, according to owner Nicole Nettleton. In addition to new and used car sales, Alexandria Motor Company also offers parts, service and body shop repairs for all makes and models of vehicles.

Juettner Motors takes pride in its longevity. With all the community support it’s had since 1976, it strives to find ways to give back. One of the ways it does so is by ensuring quality products at all times. The 47 employees stand behind what they sell. They go through a multi-point inspection, and if something isn’t good, they don’t put it on the lot. At Juettner Motors, you’ll find a mechanic shop, body shop and parts, and new car sales for Dodge, Ford and Chrysler, as well as a quality lot of pre-owned vehicles of all kinds.





Best of the Lakes Area 2016

Customer S


Bell Bank

“Happy Employees! Happy Customers!� (320) 762-3200 1001 Broadway St., Alexandria

Bell Bank has three core values: maintaining a family atmosphere, providing unequaled personal service to its customers and giving back to the communities it serves. It strives to be a company that puts people first and does things in the best interest of its customers. In terms of banking needs, it offers a full range of services, including retail banking with checking and savings accounts and personal loans, mortgage, commercial lending and wealth management. The bank opened as a mortgage loan office in Alexandria in 2002 but moved to a new location with a full-service bank in 2006.

Best of the Lakes Area 2016

Through its Pay It Forward program, Bell Bank has had the opportunity to invest in its employees and the community. Every year since 2008, the company has given every full-time employee $1,000 and every parttimer $500 to pay it forward in any way they choose, whether to individuals, families or organizations in need. This year for the bank’s 50th anniversary, every employee received $2,500 and every part-timer received $1,000 to pay it forward. To date, company-wide, employees have given away more than $9 million in Pay It Forward funds.


ho p DowntownS Magpie

“Expect the Unexpected” (320) 846-1100 529 Broadway St., Alexandria Magpie. You might be wondering what a black and white bird that steals sparkly objects has to do with a downtown boutique. The answer: Everything. As a little girl, owner Judith Nemo used to sneak rhinestone buttons from her grandmother’s button box, earning her the nickname Magpie. So later, when she bought a downtown shop that stocked shiny trinkets, among other things, the name choice was simple. The name isn’t the only thing that’s special about Magpie. Judith tries to keep a full stock of fun and unique items including clothes, jewelry, books, gifts, food, candy, fudge and more to create a memorable Magpie experience fit for the Best Downtown Shopping in the area. Whether customers buy anything or not, she hopes they leave with a smile.



Thank you for voting Ella’s Salon as the #1 Hair Salon and Sarah Roers as the #1 Massage Therapist in the Lakes Area!

Book your appointment online at

619 3RD AVE. E • SUITE 102 • ALEXANDRIA • 320-219-7676 001502565r1


Best of the Lakes Area 2016

Florist Anderson Florist and Greenhouse (320) 763-5115 1610 Sixth Ave. E., Alexandria

With almost 100 years of experience in the business, it’s no wonder that Anderson Florist and Greenhouse won Best Florist/Greenhouse. It’s a full-service florist, garden center and greenhouse with flowers for all occasions, including weddings, funerals, birthdays and anniversaries. It grows all of its own bedding plants and vegetables in 11 greenhouses and also has a nursery and perennial lot.

Anderson Florist’s 11 employees strive to make each customer’s visit something fun and beautiful. They want everyone who enters the store to leave with joy in their hearts and a smile on their face. “Attention to detail is in every aspect of our business, always striving to provide new and exciting products and ideas for our customers,” said owner Lori Schultz. It’s not all about business, however. Schultz often teaches classes, and she describes their Palm Sunday and Christmas open houses as quite epic.

2510 South Broadway Street Alexandria, MN 56308

(320) 762-8645 Ellingson Plumbing, Heating, A/C & Electrical was established in 1980, and since that time has grown into one of the most respected plumbing, heating and electrical contractors in the area for commercial and residential. Quality products, dependable service, and most of all, highly-trained and dedicated employees are the keys to our success.


for voting us BEST in..




Electrical Contractor & Plumbing/Heating Contractor


Best of the Lakes Area 2016


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Furniture Cullen’s Home Center

“People you know, products you trust.” (320) 762-1249 1620 N. Nokomis St., Alexandria

Lake Country Meats

“It’s the way meat is supposed to be!”

The familiar slogan of Cullen’s Home Center is one that its 45 employees work to live up to each day, as they are dedicated to education and training for sales and delivery staff and outstanding customer service. The business, which began in 1976, has expanded over the years. Today, Cullen’s Home Center sells appliances, electronics, flooring, furniture, fireplaces, mattresses, lighting, home décor, cabinetry and building products.

(320) 759-2072 1700 N. Nokomis NE, Alexandria Lake Country Meats takes the time to do it right. That’s what makes it the Best Meat Market. It opened in July of 2013 and hasn’t wasted any time in establishing itself at the meat master in the area. Inside the store, you’ll find all kinds of fresh-cut meat, including steaks, chops, roasts, hand-twisted brats, bologna, hot dogs and more. Not only that, but it has won multiple awards for its products, such as Grand Champion in the five-state Meat Cutting Championship and Grand Champion awards for ham, summer sausage, bacon, beef sticks and pulled pork.

Mission statement:

“To improve the lives of all we serve; customers, employees, owners, vendors and community.”



Thank You for voting us #1 Appliances/ Furniture


• Invested in our Community. • Committed to providing knowledgeable sales people. • Your local home improvement store. • Committed to offering the best products at the best prices. • “People you know, Products you trust!”






HOURS ALEXANDRIA 1620 N Nokomis 320-762-1249

Monday–Friday .............. 8am-6pm Thursday.......................... 8am-8pm Saturday .......................... 8am-5pm Sunday .............. Home with Family

“People you know, Products you trust”

Thank You for voting us Runner Up In Carpet/Flooring 001503371r1

Best of the Lakes Area 2016

Hardware Ace Hardware (320) 763-5200 406 Broadway St., Alexandria Though it might not look it, Ace Hardware has been around the area since 1963, but at the time of its inception by current president Rocqui Gustafston’s parents, it was known as Hardware Hank and located in the Hello Beautiful and Audrey’s spaces until it expanded to the current location in 1972. Along with a myriad of hardware products, Ace Hardware also makes keys, cuts glass, mixes and matches paint and more. With 17 employees manning the company, Ace Hardware’s biggest commitment is to customer service. Gustafston said that they try to help everyone that comes through the doors as quickly and efficiently as possible. By doing so, they’ve gotten to know many of the clientele over the years. Ace Hardware is a co-op, which means that the store itself is not owned by Ace Hardware but that it stocks its shelves with Ace Hardware merchandise. The store is truly locally owned, Gustafston said.

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“Save Big Money at Menards” (320) 763-7569 | 215 50th Ave. W., Alexandria Menards’ mission statement says the company is dedicated to service and quality. A family-owned and family-run business that started in 1958 in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, Menards opened its Alexandria store in 2004. Menards sells all the tools, materials and supplies for all your home improvement projects whether just needing a light bulb, can of paint or household items to build a deck, fence, shed or new house. The store has many departments, plus a garden center, lumberyard with warehouse, appliances, pet and wildlife department, rental center, delivery service, free estimates, design-it kiosks and a line of convenience grocery items for a one-stop shopping experience. Menards was started in 1958 as a pole barn building business and expanded methodically throughout the years to include retail stores that would supply the materials for the business. It now has 300 stores in 14 Midwestern states.

Thank You for Voting Us





Dianne Doyle

Brandon Strouth

Jacob Cruze

Drew Paradis

Physical Therapists (PTs) are healthcare professionals who work with individuals of all ages, who have a condition that limits their abilities to move and perform functional activities in their daily lives. Heartland Orthopedic Specialists’ Physical Therapists are the only orthopedic exclusive physical therapists in the region. Our physical therapists, orthopedic surgeons, physician assistants and athletic trainers work as a team to help make us the leaders in sports medicine care serving 1 college, 9 high schools, and Alexandria Area Hockey Association.

800-762-1177 Hand to Shoulder | Joint Replacement | Hip & Knee | Foot & Ankle | Sports Medicine Best of the Lakes Area 2016



Jewelry Karrow Jewelers

“If you don’t know your diamonds, know your jeweler.” (320) 763-3334, (320) 763-5833 628 Broadway St., Alexandria Viking Plaza, Alexandria Customer service, trust and knowledgeable staff. Those qualities are the foundation of Karrow Jewelers. The retail jeweler opened in 1973 and expanded to Viking Plaza in 1977. It sells fine diamond jewelry and gifts, as well as offers ring, jewelry and watch repairs. In customer service, the 11 employees at Karrow Jewelers focus not only on servicing what they sell, but handling customers’ heirlooms with the utmost care. They also go out of their way to cater to each customer, whether it’s delivering a late Christmas gift or bringing wedding bands to a hotel. Though many people have left the Alexandria area over the years, solid trust and familiarity is what keeps them coming back to Karrow Jewelers. And finally, the knowledgeable staff combined has many years of experience, with two employees celebrating 38 and 25 years on the job. Among the staff are a GIA gemologist and licensed watchmaker. After making numerous trips to Antwerp, Belgium, to buy diamonds for its customers, Karrow Jewelers partnered with a diamond cutter in Antwerp 12 years ago to cut and create its own GRACE of Antwerp diamond, named after owner Jeff Karrow’s daughter, Grace. In fact, the very first GRACE diamond was set aside specially for her.


No. 1


Thank you! R

emember us for your Home Decor and Gift Ideas! 001503373r1

VISIT YOUR LOCAL CULVER’S RESTAURANT: Culver’s of Alexandria 610 50th Ave Alexandria, MN 56308 (320) 763-2266

CULVERS.COM © 2016 Culver Franchising System, Inc. 10/16 001499057r1


1610 6th Ave. East • Alexandria, MN 763-5115 • 800-669-6772 •

Best of the Lakes Area 2016

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Dunham’s Sports “Get in the Game”

(320) 763-5005 3015 Highway 29 S., Alexandria Dunham’s Sports’ slogan is “Get in the Game” and customers in the Alexandria Lakes Area are doing that, voting the store the best place for sporting goods. The Alexandria store opened in May 2011 and employs between 15 and 25 workers. Dunham’s prides itself on providing customers with a wide variety of top-quality, value-oriented, name-brand merchandise at everyday low prices. Dunham’s was founded in 1937 in Detroit as Dunham’s Bait and Tackle and has grown to more than 225 stores in 21 Midwestern and Southern states.



Thank You for voting us

BEST Jewelry Store in The Lakes Area!

2 Locations in Alexandria

Thank you

FANS for your support!

If you don’t know your diamonds, know your jeweler. See you in


628 Broadway, Alexandria 320-763-3334 Viking Plaza Mall 320-763-5833 www. k a r r owj e wel er s. co m


Best of the Lakes Area 2016



e Thrift Stor Goodwill

“Together, we prepare people for work.” (320) 759-2431 219 Third Ave. E., Alexandria

r lo r Tattoo Pa RM Tattoo (320) 310-3582 504 Broadway St., Alexandria

The ninth largest retailer in Minnesota, Goodwill opened in 1919 and sells a wide variety of preowned items such as CDs, furniture, clothing, housewares, accessories and more. The Alexandria location opened in 2014 and employs 45. Because the store is a nonprofit, a large part of its revenue goes into training people in different fields of work, such as banking, medical office, construction and automotive. It also offers job placement services.

Why was RM Tattoo selected as Best Tattoo Parlor in the Alexandria Lakes Area? “We’re always trying to improve and get better, learn more. We care about our customers and make sure their experience is a good one!” said owner Randy McKernan. The business, offering tattoos and body piercing, started in 2008, and there are currently three people working in the shop. It’s won more than 35 awards in the last three years.

Thanks for Choosing RM Tattoo as

Best Tattoo Parlor!! TATTOO & BODY PIERCING

• Cover Ups • Custom Tattoos • Piercings

THANK YOU for Choosing us Best Ribs!

• Award Winning Artists


Downtown Nelson • 320-762-2416


504 Broadway, Alexandria



We look forward to continuing to serve you!

Best of the Lakes Area 2016

Best of the Lakes Area 2016


r Chiropracto Godfrey Chiropractic and Wellness (320) 762-8185 119 Sixth Ave. E., Alexandria


Godfrey Chiropractic and Wellness has a few factors going for it that make it a favorite for receiving chiropractic care in the Lakes Area. “Patients compliment us on being straightforward, our effectiveness, and having a genuine love for what we do,” Dr. Justin Godfrey said. “Having three docs is a nice perk too.” Dr. Marc Godfrey started the office in 1977 and his sons, Justin and Dr. Jon Godfrey, later joined the clinic, providing the finest quality care through the use of modern chiropractic techniques and up-todate technology. Their goal, as well as their staff’s, is: Helping people lead healthy, pain-free lives. The clinic offers several types of adjusting techniques and supplementation to help fill the void of any deficiencies patients may have. Patients range from newborns to those more than 100 years old. The clinic offers treatment plans ranging from pain management to wellness/stability. “We let the patient decide what level of care they want and they really appreciate that,” Justin said. Having a doctor and two sons all in the same practice together is an advantage. “We are a genuine family chiropractic office,” Justin said. “This is probably why so many families are drawn to our office.”

Prairie Lakes Dental p.a. k e l l y

Prairie Lakes Dental

“Providing gentle and caring dentistry for the whole family.” (320) 762-1717 2633 Jefferson St., Suite 801, Alexandria

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Dentist Kelly Bumgarner started Prairie Lakes Dental in 2008 with zero patients and a vision. Years of hard work and dedication have grown the business to eight employees and a myriad of services, including preventive cleaning and gum therapy, crowns/bridges, fillings, extractions, root canals, implant restorations, cosmetic restorations, dentures/partials, Invisalign and MTM Clear Aligners. “My staff are wonderful people who love what they do, which makes our job even more enjoyable,” Bumgarner said. Though it’s a dental office dedicated to oral health, the Prairie Lakes Dental break room is brimming with sugary treats. But don’t worry. Staff always makes sure to floss.

Prairie Lakes Dental p.a. k e l l y

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Eye Doctor Eye Associates of Alexandria

“Leading the way with innovation, professionalism, and personal service.” (320) 763-4321 1610 Broadway St., Alexandria


After two doctors retired from the Bloomquist-Bakewell Eye Clinic, Dr. John Hoven and Dr. Jeremy Anderson went into business together in 2001, paving the way for Eye Associates of Alexandria. Today, Eye Associates employs four ophthalmic technicians, five opticians, five customer service specialists and five doctors of optometry. In fact, four of its doctors, John, Melissa, Jeremy and Carie, attended school together at Pacific University College of Optometry in Forest Grove, Oregon. Eye Associates excels in care of the visual system and treating eyes that don’t look, see or feel well due to injury or disease for all members of the family, from infants to the elderly. It also fits frames, lenses and contact lenses. Best of the Lakes Area 2016

Thank You

Thank You,

for voting us the

#1 Hardware Store in the Lakes Area REA


to all who voted for D. Michael B’s as your favorite restaurant. We have an incredible loyal staff who have worked hard for us over the past 32 years. We couldn’t do it without them or you. We very much appreciate your business.


Dave, Debbie Bistodeau and Crew

convenient • local • helpful service • great selection

Best of the Lakes Area 2016


406 Broadway • Alexandria 320-763-5200


Albertville Premium Outlets • 320-762-2697



Dr. Deb Dittberner of Alex Clinic

Pharmacy Trumm Drug

“Caring for you and about you.” Downtown (320) 763-3111 600 Fillmore St., Alexandria

No matter where you are in your walk of life, Dr. Deb Dittberner is there for you. As a family physician and chief medical officer at Douglas County Hospital and Alex Clinic, she sees all aspects of the medical world. She takes care of everyone from newborns to the elderly as a family doctor and supports physicians and nurse practitioners on the administrative side as chief medical officer. She grew up in St. Paul but lives right in Alexandria today. Both of her parents were in education, and she sees that affect how she works because being a physician is also being an educator, whether teaching staff, patients or yourself. Dittberner is also caught up on the tech side of things, as she loves using Twitter. Another fact people might be surprised to know is that she avidly plays Pokemon GO and share tricks of the trade and shows off new Pokemon with two of her partners at the clinic.

In 1951, Alexandria gained a new pharmacy that offered personal customer service by friendly, caring, professional staff. The business is now in its third generation of Trumm pharmacists serving the area. Along with its traditional pharmacy products, Trumm also offers gift department and store events, rewards card program, monthly newsletter, flu shot clinics, biometric screenings, medication therapy management, medical equipment and much more. Trumm Drug’s mission is to meet customer needs, exceed customer expectations, and assure satisfaction by providing superior customer service and offering safe, quality products and services at fair prices, while maintaining a positive, safe, challenging, satisfying and growth-oriented environment for employees, and achieving continued positive results for the company.

Clinic Pharmacy (320) 763-3116 610 30th Ave. W., Alexandria Locations also in Parkers Prairie, Elbow Lake and Glenwood

ty Rehab Facili Heartland Orthopedic Specialists (320) 762-1144 111 17th Ave. E., Suite 101, Alexandria


At Heartland Orthopedic Specialists, which opened in 2004, its physical therapy team is committed to providing patients with exceptional care. Its goal is to return patients to their active lifestyles quickly and safely through its extremity orthopedic physical therapy and close integration and communication with orthopedic providers. The team is made up of four physical therapists, two athletic trainers, one patient access representative and one clinical director, in addition to close coordination with seven orthopedic surgeons, one podiatrist, one physiatrist and five orthopedic physician assistants. Heartland serves as the only orthopedic exclusive physical therapy location in the region.

Best of the Lakes Area 2016

b Fitness Clu Child Care Alexandria Area YMCA (320) 834-9622 110 Karl Drive, Alexandria In 2004, a group of concerned citizens got together to discuss the local interest of bringing a YMCA to the Alexandria Lakes Area, and in April of 2009, ground was broken for the 56,000-square-foot facility. In order to open its doors, a local board of directors was formed, and a founding members campaign was developed to help raise the funds needed for the initial start-up. In a short length of time, $430,000 was raised, and in 2006, the Alexandria Area YMCA received its National Charter. The Y’s mission, “To put Christian principles into practice through programs that build a healthy spirit, mind and body for all,” was put into place, and on June 1, 2010, the YMCA opened its doors to the Maynard “Bud,” Sylvia, Diana, Neil and Bruce Peterson Program Center.

Currently, there are 150 employees – 125 part-time and 25 full-time. The YMCA offers everything from health and wellness programs like group fitness and personal training, state-of-the-art cardio equipment and indoor walking track to child care and youth sports programs. A fun tidbit shared by Jackie Peters, senior program director, is that the YMCA was founded in London in 1844. Reportedly, London offered a bleak landscape of tenement housing and dangerous influences for the young men who migrated to the city to find jobs. George Williams, a 22-yearold farmer turned department store worker, was troubled by what he saw and reportedly joined with 11 friends to organize the first Young Men’s Christian Association – YMCA.

Thanks for choosing us

Best Meat Market in the Lakes Area!

1700 North Nokomis NE Alexandria, MN 56308

320-759-2072 Best of the Lakes Area 2016

Full Service Meat Market featuring Hand twisted Brats & Hotdogs, Award Winning Beef Sticks, Jerky, Ham and Summer Sausage, Fresh cut Pork Chops, Steaks & Roasts 001499045r1


Golf Course Geneva Golf Course (320) 762-7089 4181 Geneva Golf Club Drive, Alexandria Geneva Golf Course, known as the “fastest growing golf club in Central Minnesota,” offers 27 holes and five sets of tees. “We have a variety of scenery and a tee box that fits all levels of proficiency,” Grant Hanson, golf professional, said. “All of that at a great value!”

herapist T e g a s s a M Sarah Roers of Ella’s Salon

on Tanning Sal ibeach Tan and Nails (320) 219-7774 307 N. Nokomis St., Suite 107, Alexandria


The club started in 2000 and has grown to 45 employees. Besides golf, if offers dining, golfing leagues, corporate events, simulators, winter driving range and lessons. “Whether you are a golfer or not you can experience our social activities,” Hanson said.

As a massage therapist, Brandon resident Sarah Roers isn’t afraid to pull tricks out of a hat to bring people relief. She tries to listen closely and zone in on her clients’ needs, which are some of the reasons why she was voted Best Massage Therapist in the area. “That’s an honor,” she said. “It says a lot for the community. It shows a lot that your work pays off.” Roers works for Ella’s Salon, where she offers a multitude of massages such as pregnancy, geriatric, deep tissue, Swedish, sports medicine and reflexology. Not only that, but she works on people of all ages, from children all the way up to adults age 96, and she adjusts accordingly to each one. “Sometimes people just want to come and relax,” she said. “Nowadays, people use it (massage) for helping with their health.” Roers used to work with a chiropractor, so she is no stranger to issues such as frozen shoulder, spine fusions and more. In those areas where other therapists might be nervous to work, she said she feels very comfortable.

If you’re looking for a place to be pampered, look no further than iBeach Tan and Nails. The tanning and nail salon opened in 2014 and offers 24/7 tanning in its high-quality beds. The salon offers three different levels of tanning packages, and prices vary accordingly. In addition to being a tanning salon, iBeach is also a full-service nail salon.

Mission statement:

“We strive to provide the most convenient, clean, and comfortable environment so our customers can have the best experience possible.” Best of the Lakes Area 2016




Silbernick Accounting, Inc. would like to say

Thank You to all our clients.

We appreciate your business.

Best Insurance Agency 2016 Thank you for voting! 623 Hawthorne St Alexandria 401 Kron St Evansville 320-763-9231

“5 Star Insurance Agency” -Life, Home, Auto & Umbrella Customer from Minneapolis, MN

“Excellent Service!”

-Health Insurance Customer from Carlos, MN

“Great people & great atomosphere. Best Insurance Company I’ve ever had in all my years of driving!” -Home & Auto Customer from Alexandria, MN

Silbernick Accounting, Inc. 505 22nd Ave E Suite 9 Alexandria, MN 56308 320-762-9749 001502563r1

Best of the Lakes Area 2016

Proudly Representing:



ina Lake Dest

ti o n

otel Hotel/M

Arrowwood Resort and Conference Center (320) 762-1124 2100 Arrowwood Lane NW, Alexandria

A lot of people agree with the slogan, “It’s just more fun at Arrowwood Resort!” It was named the Best Lakeside Destination Hotel/Motel. Arrowwood offers a casual atmosphere, great food, great service and it’s the only one in the area located right on the lake. A little example of the fun: At the Deck Bar, all the kids’ meals are served on a Frisbee.

Local Theater

The business started in 1971 and employs between 150 and 300 people depending on the season. In addition to its casual Deck Bar and fine dining in the Lake Cafe, the resort will fill boats and personal watercraft with gas while customers eat, offers dock service, marina rentals and more.

Alexandria Area Arts Association Theatre (320) 762-8300 | 618 Broadway St., Alexandria

There’s always something going on at the Alexandria Area Arts Association Theatre. It produces six to seven main shows a year, plus three to four others, with a new show every six weeks. It also offers an improv team, concerts, educational classes and a student theater program that puts on one to two shows with 50-60 kids on stage. The size of the cast can vary from play to play, from four members all the way up to 60, plus the orchestra and crew. An Oscar winner has also graced the stage. Since the late 1960s, the theater has thrived. However, it didn’t start with a physical location, instead performing at the Jefferson High School auditorium. It wasn’t until

1990 that it found a permanent home on Broadway. The building itself is about 100 years old and is made up of many different buildings. So to take care of it and produce each show, AAAA raises all of its funds through community support. In everything that it does, AAAA tries to keep everything local, whether it’s working with other local theaters or casting all local performers. The theater, after all, belongs to the community. “This belongs to you. This is your community theater,” said David Christman, associate director. “We have some neat things planned for the future. Stay tuned.”

d Singer/Ban Blonde and the Bohunk If you like traditional country music with a little flare thrown in, then Blonde and the Bohunk is for you. Sara Severson, the blonde, and Brian Chlian, the Bohemian from Forada, used to play in bands until work and family got in the way. Years later, they started to get the


itch to perform again, so Severson called him up and asked if he was interested. The rest is history. For the most part, they perform smaller, intimate gigs as a duo for restaurants, bars, festivals and other events. When it comes time for a

large performance, they enlist the help of a full band, complete with lead guitar, bass, drummer and sound man. Severson and Chlian perform for the simple reason that they love it. They’re not about lights and fame, instead gravitating toward low-key, traditional performances for the fun of it. Outside of the band, Severson is married with three children and works at Tastefully Simple. Chlian owns Klein Construction and is also married with a son. They treat each other like brother and sister. In fact, they were born only five days apart and joke that they were singing in the nursery together. Best of the Lakes Area 2016

st Local Arti Leanne Larson of Art Bar 39

Local artist Leanne Larson is a trailblazer. She was born and raised in Australia and came to the U.S. at age 18. A few years later, she married and moved to Alexandria, then settled in Garfield with her husband and three children. After she graduated from the University of Minnesota Morris in 2012 with a Bachelor of Arts in studio art painting and printmaking, she told herself she would make art her full-time work, not relying on other jobs to support her family. She developed Cane Toad Studios and set to work creating art and attending shows across Minnesota. In the fall of 2013, she started teaching painting classes through Alexandria Community Education. That led to the founding of Art Bar 39 in August of 2014. “It was my goal to continue to expose art to the Alexandria area by engaging the community in the process of painting.”

Art Bar 39 offers fun art experiences for everyone, both in the Viking Plaza studio and across the area, from weekly paint and sip events to private events and birthday parties. It also offers open studio in which adults and children can walk in and make a painting of their choice. Larson currently employs 12 artists and studio assistants. In addition to running Art Bar 39, Larson keeps busy with commissioned portraits and landscapes and her live wedding and event painting service, specializing in painting live at weddings as the ceremony is taking place. She said it feels good to be recognized by the community and hopes this designation will help her continue to share her passion with others.

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Chris, Lori, Tyler. Not pictured: Doug Thompson

Address: 1223 Broadway Street, Alexandria, MN Phone: 320-763-5473 Hours: Office: Monday-Saturday 6am-9pm Sunday 7am-8pm Carwash: Monday-Saturday 7am-8pm Sunday 8am-6pm 001503274r1

Best of the Lakes Area 2016


Alexandria Blizzard

vent Sporting E

(320) 763-7600 802 Third Ave. W., Alexandria The Alexandria Blizzard take local hockey to the next level. They’re the closest thing to a professional team that the area can have, and they make sure all spectators experience a professional environment. Even when fans are sitting in the stands and the boys aren’t on the ice, there’s

Tom Lehman

Sports Star Alexandria native Tom Lehman continues to be a popular figure in his hometown as the former British Open champion was voted as the area’s local sports star. Lehman, 57, grew up playing the Alexandria Golf Club before moving on to the University of Minnesota for his collegiate career. In 1982, he turned pro and has enjoyed a career on the PGA Tour and now the PGA Champions Tour ever since. Lehman won the one major championship of his PGA career in 1996 when he took the British Open by two strokes over Mark McCumber and Ernie Els. Lehman has five PGA Tour wins and 19 runner-up finishes. His résumé includes nine Champions Tour wins and 10 more


entertainment happening. While at the game, fans have access to concessions, a bar, giveaways and prizes, and full-on sports entertainment. The players try to put on the same show that the pros do so that spectators have something to cheer about during the whole game.

runner-ups since joining the tour and playing eight events in 2009. This past summer, he added the honor of being a vice-captain for the 2016 United States Ryder Cup team that beat Europe in Lehman’s home state of Minnesota at the Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska. “It’s an emotional time for me,” Lehman said in a press conference after the win. “When (U.S. player) Ryan Moore made that winning putt, I started bawling like a baby. Just to be a part of this, representing this state, trying to be part of the team that was going to bring the victory here back home, and then delivering, that’s really something.” Lehman played in 20 Champions Tour events in 2016, finishing with five top-10s and one runner-up.

Alexandria City Park 118 City Park Road, Alexandria

The origins of Alexandria City Park date back almost 100 years. On Jan. 16, 1922, the Alexandria City Council approved the purchase of a 3-acre strip of land between Lake Agnes and Lake Henry. The local Kiwanis Club worked together with the council to raise funds for the park, and after the building of a bath house and bandstand, creation of a beach, tree removal and grounds grooming, a formal opening took place on Aug. 10, 1922, with a water carnival put on by the Alexandria firemen. Though some of the features from that time are long gone, the park has thrived. Its individuality comes from


the amenities for all ages that fill its 18.5 acres. It has numerous picnic shelters, shade trees, water, fishing pier, walking trail, playground area, volleyball, tennis courts, a small ballfield and open space for flying kites or tossing a Frisbee. Along with recreation, City Park is a popular place for couples to tie the knot in an outdoor wedding ceremony. Some use the Bandstand Shelter for the ceremony and others use the beach area. It also plays host to outdoor worship services, the annual Art in the Park and more.

Best of the Lakes Area 2016

Accountant Silbernick Accounting, Inc. (320) 762-9749 505 22nd Ave. E., Suite 9, Alexandria Silbernick Accounting, Inc. has roots all the way back to 1968 when Ed and Shirley Silbernick moved their family to Alexandria. At that time, Ed was employed by a local accounting business. In 1996, Ed started his own business in which he employed his wife, Shirley, and their son, Chad. That’s when Silbernick Accounting, Inc. became known as the business it is today. Although it wasn’t the biggest accounting firm in the area, they were determined to out-service the competition.  Due to growing demands, Aaron Walsh was added to the staff in 2010. Their main focus is personal and small business tax returns. When tax season starts, they add parttime employees to their staff in order to keep up with the demand. In the off season, they focus on payrolls, bookkeeping and more.

With long hours and a steady stream of work, Chad said his clients make going to work enjoyable. “We become our client’s friend. We have the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of people around us.” Because of the longevity of their business, he’s been able to watch his clients’ families grow. “It’s nice to know people in the area value what we do,” he said.  “We have the best clients ever.”


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119 6th Avenue East • Alexandria • 320-762-8185

www. 001499091r1

Best of the Lakes Area 2016



Chris Karpan Law, LLC (320) 298-4696 220 22nd Ave. E., Suite 104, Alexandria

Chris Karpan, the owner and sole attorney at Chris Karpan Law, LLC, practices exclusively in the area of criminal defense. Essentially, when people are accused of wrongdoing, he stands between them and the government. Having lived in the Alexandria area since 1996, Karpan was the Douglas County Attorney from 1999 through 2010, where he wore many different hats and represented many different government and law enforcement agencies. Karpan now represents only private clients, no government

agencies, and puts all of his skills and energy into protecting each individual client. While Karpan said he’s proud to be recognized as one of the best in the lakes area, he’s not all about business. Most Wednesdays and Fridays at noon, you can find him playing basketball at Lakes Area Recreation with whom he describes as “the other former semi-pro players in town.”


Auto Care

“Where the customer is the company.” (320) 763-6557 1705 Broadway St., Alexandria

For 61 years, Cenex Tire Pros and Auto Care Center has been providing reliable auto care – and it shows. The 32 Cenex employees are concerned about getting vehicles in and out in a timely manner and providing the best service possible. They do this without high pressure sales and by fixing what is necessary, nothing unneeded.

Tire Store

The company is a cooperative, meaning its profits are returned to customers. Since starting business, Cenex has paid about $5.5 million back to customers, which in turn went right back into the local economy. Cenex offers oil changes, brake repair, alignments, general auto repair, full-service tire sales and a service department.


“Tires? Of course, it’s in our name, but we do everything else too.” (320) 763-4111 | 801 Third Ave. E., Alexandria Alexandria’s Tiremaxx Service Center has been a locally owned family business for 28 years, and it shows in their quality and dedication to customers. The service center offers tires and also complete auto and light truck service and repair.

it Union Bank/Cred

Bremer Bank (320) 763-6622 | 720 Broadway, Alexandria 2210 Highway 29 S., Alexandria 113 E. Front St., Brandon

One reason Bremer Bank is the best is that it has served the Alexandria area every day since 1919 with banking, wealth management, investments, trust and insurance. Between the owner, Otto Bremer and Trust, and Bremer Bank, it donates approximately $1 million a week to the communities it calls home.


Bremer’s mission is to build trusted long-term relationships with businesses and individuals to help them achieve their goals. It does this by providing the right financial solutions and superior service, through empowered market leadership. Best of the Lakes Area 2016

eaning Carpet Cl ServiceMaster

“The clean you expect, the service you deserve.” (320) 763-5551 203 Lake St., Alexandria Why was ServiceMaster in Alexandria selected as the Best Carpet Cleaning Business in the Lakes Area? Because it uses the best products, equipment and procedures, and its knowledgeable technicians help ensure carpets are cleaned to their fullest potential, according to the business. ServiceMaster also offers a guarantee of satisfaction that gives peace of mind to its customers. Going above and beyond fits in well with the company’s slogan: “The clean you expect, the service you deserve.” As a full-service cleaning contractor, the business offers a complete line of residential and commercial services that include carpet and upholstery cleaning, construction cleaning, fall and spring cleaning, water and fire damage mitigation, mold remediation, janitorial service, tile and grout cleaning, vinyl floor refinishing and odor removal services.

The company’s mission statement contains three main goals: Being accountable to helping people develop (associates), excelling with customers, and growing profitably (shareholders). It achieves those results by focusing on caring about people, doing the right thing, valuing diversity and teamwork, doing what it says, delighting customers, being a learning organization, being committed to innovation and honoring God in everything it does. ServiceMaster has been an established business in Alexandria since 1972.  Since 1993, it has been operated by the Strong family. The company employees 40 fulland part-time staff members.

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for Choosing us Best Lakeside Destination and Best Hotel!!

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$10 OFF a bottle of wine.

320-762-1124 2100 Arrowwood Lane Alexandria, MN

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Best of the Lakes Area 2016


Ellingson Plumbing, Heating, A/C & Electrical

/ Htg. Elec. /Plumb.

(320) 762-8645 | 2510 S. Broadway St., Alexandria

Ellingson Plumbing, Heating, A/C and Electrical began in 1980 and is committed to providing convenience and efficiency when it comes to the services it provide. That’s why it provides commercial and residential plumbing, heating, a/c and electrical. The 120 employees pride themselves in customer service and ensure that every

Hair Salon

loyer Small Emp Ella’s Salon (320) 219-7676 | 619 Third Ave. E., Alexandria

er Home Build

single job is done effectively and efficiently each time. When driving through Central Minnesota along Interstate 94, it’s likely that you’ll see one of the nearly 100 Ellingson vehicles out and about. Even better: Since 2011, Ellingson has had approximately 90,000 service calls.

Hair, pedicures, massages, facials, eyelash extensions, manicures – Ella’s Salon does it all. Since 2009, its been providing salon and spa services for all occasions, and its large following is all thanks to the 21-member staff, according to owner Emily Regnier. Customer service is top of mind at Ella’s, and the staff is loyal to its clients and committed to providing them with excellent services. “The girls go above and beyond to make sure every service is performed

with high standards,” Regnier said. “They also build longlasting relationships with their customers.” Ella’s has also seen quite a bit of growth since its beginnings. The salon itself has been added on to twice, and it is now one of the top distributing accounts of Cosmoprof, a national salon products distributer.

Northwoods Construction (320) 766-8690 5815 50th Ave. SE, Alexandria

Getting its start in 2002 by Mike and Dan Klimek, Northwoods Construction has established itself as a go-to home construction company. With services spanning general contracting, windows, garages, remodels,

desks and more, the company has earned its spot as the Best Home Builder. It has a staff that gives attention to detail and customer service and provides qualified subcontractors to help in construction needs.

Thank You For voting us

#1 Dentist

We appreciate our patients & love seeing your smiles! “ B E I N G S W E E T TO Y O U I S O U R B U S I N E S S ! ”

Thank You for Your Vote for


430 Broadway St, Alexandria, MN (320) 763-4741







Easton Place II, Alexandria 320.762.1717

Best of the Lakes Area 2016

Soderholm Insurance

Ins. Agent

(320) 763-9231 623 Hawthorne St., Alexandria

For 13 years, three generations of the Soderholm family have been working to bring affordable insurance to area families. The company is an independent insurance agency and represents more than 20 different insurance carriers. When a client wants to find the most affordable insurance, Soderholm’s 15 employees do the shopping

for them, comparing not only price, but coverage and company history. Soderholm offers services for life insurance, home insurance, auto insurance, health insurance, business insurance, disability insurance, farm insurance and annuities.

Mission statement:

“To take time to accurately review and recognize all our clients’ insurance needs – we assist in helping clients determine how to properly insure their family’s assets.”

Landscaper Colorful Seasons Garden Center

“We’ve got a good thing growing!” (320) 762-1548 3400 Dakota St., Alexandria Within the landscaping area, they offer all kinds of amenities, such as plantings of trees and shrubs; paving stone sidewalks, patios and driveways; natural stone patios and walkways; steps; fire pits and fireplaces; retaining walls; night lighting, irrigation systems and more.


320-762-4057 3211 Hwy. 29 So., Alexandria 001491767r1

Best of the Lakes Area 2016



Thank you for voting us as your

#1 GARBAGE SERVICE in the Lakes Area!


With a top-notch landscape design and installation team, Colorful Seasons Garden Center definitely earned the Best Landscaper category. Started in 1989, it brings a long tradition of experience to its projects, and the professional installers perform all aspects of the installation process, transforming landscapes into beautiful outdoor living spaces.


Pet Care

Alexandria Veterinary Clinic (320) 762-8112 710 Third Ave. W., Alexandria

The Alexandria Veterinary Clinic opened its doors in 1917 and is still going strong nearly 100 years later. With 18 employees, the clinic works to provide compassionate, trusted, quality care for pets of all sizes. Its services include preventive health care,

orthopedics, cardiology, dermatology, dentistry, surgery, radiology, senior care, boarding/boarding suites/day boarding, grooming, self-serve dog wash, Four Paws rehabilitation, doctor oncall 24-hour service, laser surgery and behavior consultation.

Mission statement: “To provide companion animals with accessible,

genuine, high quality, compassionate health care that enhances their lives and enriches the lives of their human families.”

r v i ce Garbage Se Four hometown guys who were born and raised in the area, are committed to the community, have breakfast pizzas on Friday paydays and embrace the color red – it can’t get much better than that. Alex Rubbish started in 1969 and provides residential and commercial garbage service and recycling, as well as rollover rentals. It also has a demo land and transfer station by

C o. Real Estate

Alex Rubbish and Recycling “The Hometown Guys – Start Seeing Red” (320) 846-4669 | 1301 36th Ave., Alexandria Carlos Corners, which is open to the general public. With all that background, the four owners and 16 employees have gotten to know many people in the community. They prefer to do business the old-fashioned way, with a handshake and no contracts. “If we do what we’re supposed to, we should have gained your business and your trust,” said owner Shane Schmidt.

Counselor Realty (320) 762-1111 211 Broadway St., Alexandria

Counselor Realty is unique. It has 18 owners – all independent but united in purpose, which allows them to customize services to customers. “We are all invested as owners and we seek to attain the highest level of education,” noted Sandy Jackson, realtor. “We came to the company with experience and a well established client base. We are all united in our mission to provide the highest level of service and competency.” The company’s mission statement is “Experience Our Experience.” Located in a historic, 101-year-old red house, Counselor Realty was established in 1983. The company renovated the entire four-level building, paying close attention to preserving its historical charm and character by maintaining the original 1915 woodwork, fireplace, buffets, cabinetry, staircase, light fixtures and windows.


Within those brick walls is a real estate company that applies a partnership concept. Each realtor co-owns the business, shares in the expense and management of the business, and must reach the highest level of education by obtaining a broker’s license. This concept results in committed, full-time, knowledgeable and ethical agents. At Counselor Realty, clients get the advantage of the entire brokerage to make sure transactions are successful. It’s been the market leader in the Alexandria Lakes Area, selling more real estate than any other company since 2002.

Best of the Lakes Area 2016

Knute Nelson/Grand Arbor

m un i t y Retirement Com

(320) 763-6653 420 12th Ave. E., Alexandria

Knute Nelson is dedicated to senior care, and it shows through the company’s 542 employees. The facility was established through a bequest by the late senator and governor of Minnesota, Knute Nelson, to provide care for older adults. It is a nonprofit, Christianbased organization that combines extraordinary legacy with an innovative presence in senior care.

Knute Nelson’s services include home care, hospice, senior apartments, assisted living, enhanced assisted living, memory care assisted living, a care center, outpatient therapy, wellness programming, respite care, short-term rehab center, spiritual care, smart home technology and personal emergency response.

Mission statement:

“To enrich the lives of everyone we serve.”

re Memory Ca

Ecumen Bethany Community “Senior Living Redefined” (320) 762-1567 1020 Lark St., Alexandria

Ecumen Bethany Community is 100 years old and still going strong. Come Jan. 1, Ecumen Bethany will celebrate the milestone with a look back on many years filled with quality and compassionate care for older adults. It has won a host of awards in all areas, including memory care. Other adult services it offers include home care, short-term rehab, a care center, adult day services, lakeside living apartments and more. Randee Hall, director of community services and marketing, attributes the success to Ecumen Bethany’s strong team of more than 200 employees. “I think it’s hiring the right people that care and providing exceptional training,” she said. “We have the best staff


Echo Press

“Giving Information Life” (320) 763-3133 225 Seventh Ave. E., Alexandria

Along with providing the Lakes Area a quality print product, the Echo Press is devoted to an up-to-date and accurate online presence. Its website was launched in the mid-1990s and was among the first newspapers to go online in Minnesota. Douglas County residents rely on the Echo Press website as their “go-to” site for news, sports, feature stories, upcoming events, breaking news, local government and more. They appreciate the fact that the site is constantly updated with new information seven Best of the Lakes Area 2016

to resident ratios I’ve ever seen. We have more time to be with our residents.” In terms of its memory care, Ecumen Bethany embraces using nonpharmacological methods to control dementia or behavioral problems, instead implementing holistic exercise, personalized attention, massage therapy, healing touch and essential oils.

days a week. With the website, the Echo Press is able to provide a new way of delivering local and regional news with video, photos, archived stories and interaction with social media. In addition to its Lakeland Shopping Guide and twice-weekly print newspaper, the Echo Press provides advertising opportunities on multiple platforms. It also offers “Extra” sections, specially produced tabs and magazines such as Chicz, the Real Estate Guide, Wedding Guide and The Vacationer.


loyer Large Emp

Volunteer Lakes Area Humane Society (320) 759-2260 3811 Nevada St. SW, Alexandria Though dogs and cats are by far its most popular animals, the Lakes Area Humane Society (LAHS) has also served as a temporary home for iguanas, ferrets, sugar gliders, fish, zebra finches, cockatoos, goats, potbellied pigs and even an alligator once. The LAHS, which is run by four full-time staff members and five part-time employees, is a nonprofit that dates back to 1989. It was begun by a group of citizens who wished to make a difference in the community when it came to stray and unwanted animals. Eventually, their mission expanded, and they were able to build an animal shelter that would house the animals in one location rather than in foster homes. The shelter opened to the public in 1999, and in the time since, it has provided a safe place for more than 18,000 animals. In addition to housing stray and unclaimed animals, the shelter assists local law enforcement with abuse/neglect cases, provides education on the importance of spaying and neutering pets, reuniting lost pets with their owners, facilitating adoptions, hosts low-cost spay/neuter clinics and provides behavior counseling and dog training for pet owners.

Douglas Machine (320) 763-6587 3404 Iowa St., Alexandria In 1966, Douglas Machine owners Vern and Bud had a vision. They dreamed of one day providing half a dozen jobs. Fifty years later, more than 600 employee owners are contributing to the ongoing success of the company. The employees are what make a company, according to Douglas Machine president and CEO Jon Ballou. “Douglas employees know they are cared for and that they are vital in the success of the company. Our outstanding team of employees care about each other, our customers and the community,” he said. Douglas also has a strong mission, vision and values, including unwavering integrity, a servant’s heart, ownership spirit and continuous innovation and improvement. It remains consistent in its focus of enriching the lives of its employee owners while at the same time catering to its customers. Douglas is a global leader in automated secondary packaging solutions for paperboard, corrugated and shrink film. It specializes in the design and manufacture of cartoners, sleevers, case/tray packers, palletizers and shrink wrap systems.

Mission statement:

“To promote responsible care and training for household pets through education and public awareness, and when appropriate, to provide a safe and sheltering haven for lost and abandoned animals pending placement in suitable permanent homes.” Thank you for 13 years of business and voting us

#1 in Downtown Shopping #2 in Boutique shopping in the “Best of the Lakes Area”

Thanks for voting us the #1 Tanning Salon in the Lakes Area!


Acrylic • Pink & White • Gel (Powder) • Pedicure Manicure • Free Hand Nail Art • Tanning 24/7 NO MONTHLY CONTRACT 529 Broadway, Downtown Alexandria • 320-846-1100



L-R: Jan Teschendorf, Judith Nemo and Tanya Willard. Not pictured Autumn Neis

Stop in and check out our trendy fashions, find gifts for all ages, fun home decor and always lots of surprises.

307 N. Nokomis St. Alexandria, MN 56308 | 320.219.7774 Business Hours: Mon- Fri: 9:00am - 7:00pm Sat: 9:00am - 4:00pm Closed Sundays

Best of the Lakes Area 2016






#1 TIRE STORE, AND #2 IN AUTO CARE. We would also like to thank our amazing staff at Tiremaxx for the wonderful work they do.



(320) 763-4111 MONDAY–FRIDAY 7AM–6PM Best of the Lakes Area 2016


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Best of the Lakes Area 2016

2016 Best of the Lakes Area  

A readers' choice awards book featuring all the best the lakes area has to offer - restaurants, shops, services, arts and providers.