REAP News

Latino businesses are the highlight of a walking tour

Latino entrepreneurs in Grand Island are proud of their businesses, and, in an effort to attract non-Latino customers, invited the public to a recent walking tour.

The Grand Island Latino Businesses Walking Tour was held Friday, Oct. 20, in celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month. The event was organized by the Center for Rural Affairs’ Rural Enterprise Assistance Project (REAP) and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension.

Loop Brewing spurs economic development in McCook

Loop Brewing Company in McCook, Nebraska, is another craft brewery that has spurred economic development in its city.

The company was established in 2011 with 10 employees and now has 30 employees. To help get the business started, Center for Rural Affairs Rural Enterprise Assistance Project specialist Dena Beck provided one-on-one business plan coaching, and our small business lending program was able to help with a financing package to make the business a reality.

Demand for small business capital is strong

The unexpected passing of Jeff Reynolds, long-time director of the Rural Enterprise Assistance Project (REAP), made 2017 a year of change and transition for our small business development work. 

Jeff was committed to rural small business development, and to each and every small business owner we ever worked with. Since becoming program director in 2000, Jeff led a dramatic expansion of our small business lending, training, and technical assistance work. 

He fundamentally believed in small business development as a strategy for small towns. He helped design, campaign for, and win both state and federal programs that now provide resources to other small business development organizations. His impact extends far beyond Nebraska.

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