Glacial Ridge Winery, owned by Ron and Kim Wothe, recently received loan assistance from the Southwest Initiative Foundation’s (SWIF) Microenterprise Loan Program for the expansion of their farm winery located at 15455 Old Mill Road in rural Spicer. Glacial Ridge Winery began operations in August 2007 and recently remodeled a large barn on the property to improve and expand the winery’s production area, while also adding public space to accommodate larger indoor events, including weddings, parties, entertainment and corporate events. The new event venue has décor inspired by the barrel rooms of working wineries—open and airy with exposed beams, tin and barn wood, as well as lighting and ceiling fans—which creates a simple, yet elegant space large enough to comfortably seat approximately 150 guests.
Glacial Ridge Winery continues to garner awards for their hand crafted Minnesota wines. Most recently, five Glacial Ridge wines were awarded medals at the 2010 Finger Lakes International Wine Competition in New York. Winning wines included St. Pepin, receiving gold; Castle Rock Red and Sippin’ From a Slipper, receiving silver; and Jazzy and Anitque Car Run, receiving bronze. More information about the winery can be found online at www.glacialridgewinery.com or by calling 320‐796‐6127.
“The Foundation is very pleased to be able to assist Ron and Kim with this expansion of their business, which is a vital part of the local tourist trade area around Spicer and the Willmar lakes region,” said SWIF Program Officer Kurt Thompson. Proceeds from the loan will be used to purchase equipment and provide working capital for the start up of the service center. SWIF’s Microenterprise Loan Program offers loans of up to $35,000 for starting or expanding for‐profit small businesses located within the 18 counties of southwest Minnesota. This program also now serves Wright, Carver and southern Stearns counties.
In addition to financing, SWIF provides free technical assistance to all clients who have received a loan through the Microenterprise Program for the life of the loan. SWIF staff and business consultants provide one‐to‐one business planning, accounting, marketing and other training opportunities that will help entrepreneurs succeed in their venture.
SWIF’s Microenterprise Loan Program receives