The West Duluth Business Club (WDBC) regularly hosts a variety of events, providing opportunities for members to network, learn skills to advance their business, and stay informed about initiatives in the community. Current WDBC events include:
The West Duluth Business AND Community Club meets the SECOND WEDNESDAY of every month at 11:30 a.m., in the Banquet Room at Mr. D’s Bar & Grill, 5622 Grand Avenue, Duluth, MN. There is no charge, unless you order a lunch from the offered luncheon menu.
January 11 – Kris Liljeblad – Metropolitan Interstate Council/ARDC
February 8 – Aaron Johnson – Director of Operations and Business Development – The Cultural North
March 8 – Patty Mester, PBS/WDSE-President and CEO will be presenting on the local news programming station’s acquisition of the KUMD radio station.
April 12 – Amber Burns- Community Impact Specialist, Duluth Superior Area Community Foundation.
May 10 – Jason Reid – DECC Finance Director and Aubrey Hagen – Director of Membership Development, Duluth Area Chamber of Commerce – an academic exercise through Fuse Duluth; ideas for development (Kmart building as an example)
June 14 – Carol Donahue, DHORPA Chair – Presents on what’s happening with the restoration and preservation of the 1920’s vintage ‘Kilgen and Sons’ pipe organ at Denfeld. DHORPA is a Minnesota Incorporated non-profit that has been granted IRS 501(c)3 tax exempt status.
August 9 – Sandi Larson, Entrepreneurship Fund. – Sharing great information on how E Fund works in the community and with entrepreneurs. She will talk about the services, resources, and funds the E Fund provides and answer questions.
September 13 – James Gittemeier, City of Duluth, Senior Transportation Planner – There are major multimodal transportation investments that are in the works for West Duluth over the next 10 years, from the DTA Bus Rapid Transit Spirit Valley hub to the I-35 Thompson Hill reconstruction, from the Grand Avenue road work to the planned completion of the Cross City Trail and its connections with the surrounding neighborhoods. Each one of these projects will go through its own planning and design process, but it’s not too early to begin a commercial district-wide discussion on these projects and how the entirety of all the projects will leave long-lasting impacts.
October 11 – Mayoral and District 5 candidates. TBD
November 8 – Sumair Sheikh, Local Initiatives Support Corporation will present to the group about LISC and have a refresh of what they’re up to.
December 13 – David Huntley, Human Resources, a Senior Consultant in Terch and Associates – Will talk about Recent and Upcoming Legislative Changes for Employers
Would you like to become a speaker at an upcoming luncheon? Contact us now!
January 12 – Megan Halena – Program Director of Generations Health Care Initiatives, which is a MNSure Navigator service. Come learn about how to sign up for MNSure and how the program works; find ways to help yourself and your employees find affordable health insurance.
February 9 – Matt Baumgartner – President of Duluth Area Chamber of Commerce
March 9 – Mentor North – Ashley Grimm
April 13 – Bellmont Partners – Visit Duluth
May 11, 2022– Andrea Black – Director of Business Services, Entrepreneur Fund
June 8, 2022 –Arik Forsman
July 13, 2022 – Duluth Transit Authority – Director of Planning and Grants, Chris Belden and Director of Marketing, David Clark.
August 10, 2022 – Tony Dierckins, presenting from a new book “Duluth’s Grand Old Architecture 1870-1940.”
September 14, 2022 – Philip Gilpin, Jr. – Catalyst – literary and visual arts/festival. The TV and film industry is big business. $49 billion dollars is spent each year creating the content we all consume on our TVs and devices. Approximately 70% of that money is spent at local vendors and small businesses in the communities where TV shows and films are produced. Catalyst has taken on the difficult task of organizing the Duluth community to become one of America's production hubs where that money is spent, and our work has already has produced millions in new local revenue, but it’s time for the entire community to be involved. Join us to hear more about “why Duluth”, how it’s all happening here, and how to join the fight to grow Duluth’s economy.
October 12, 2022 – Tiersa Wodash – Architect and city planner/community revitalization; West Duluth Building for Youth – Russ Salgy, Janet Kennedy, John Magus, et al.
November 9, 2022– Dan Hartman – Executive Director of Duluth Entertainment and Convention Center.
December 14, 2022 – Jason Reid – AVP Treasury Management and Payments Consultant and Aubrey Hagen – Director of Membership Development, Duluth Area Chamber of Commerce – one model of development and ideas.
Board members meet the last Tuesday of every month at Mr. D’s from 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Guest comments and ideas are welcome at the beginning of every board meeting from 11:35 to 11:45. Contact the club president for more information.
Spirit Valley Days
The WDBC is proud to sponsor Spirit Valley Days. Spirit Valley Days is held the first weekend in August. Some of the activities include the annual parade, street dance with live music, Miss West Duluth pageant and more!
Click here for more information on Spirit Valley Days.
Past Club Special Events
Melvin Stelten Memorial
The WDBC holds an annual memorial and candle light vigil for Melvin Stelten at Wesley Residence (corner of 56th Ave. West and Grand Ave.) every year on January 20 from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m.
Melvin Stelten was a gentleman who lived at Wesley Assisted living for the last nine years of his life. He was a paragon of our community because he was kind hearted and loved to joke around with everyone. He loved the outdoors and walked for miles every day in West Duluth in order help keep the area clean and return stray grocery carts back to the correct businesses. Melvin passed away January 20, 2016 due to an accident while walking across Grand Ave.
The West Duluth Business Club would like to recognize his contributions to our community with an annual memorial. The public is welcome to join us in remembering Melvin.
Winter West Market
The first Winter West Market was held in December of 2018. The event is a great way to kick off the holiday shopping season by supporting West Duluth businesses. The event also included opportunities to win prizes and enjoy great food and entertainment. Check back for details on the 2019 event.
Annual Children’s Christmas Party
The annual WDBC Children’s Christmas party is held in mid-December. Santa will visit with all the good boys and girls. Gifts, games & treats will also be provided.
WDBC Holiday Party
The WDBC Holiday Party is held annually to celebrate the season typically in early January. It’s a great way to connect with other business owners, and enjoy some food on us!
For more information on other events in the West Duluth area, please view our West Duluth Community Event Calendar.