The west-central Iowa town of Manning is chosen as the first-ever Iowa Community of the Year by the Iowa office of the U.S. Small Business Administration.
Ron Reischl, of Main Street Manning, says the Carroll County town of nearly 1,500 is progressive yet slow-paced and offers a high quality of life. Reischl says, “There is a spirit within the community that we will thrive rather than survive and the community organizations work together very well.”
The SBA says more than 90-percent of Iowa’s businesses are considered small businesses, but Reischl says the percentage is much higher in his community. “All of our businesses would be considered small businesses,” Reischl says. “We do not have any chains in Manning except for Casey’s, so all of the businesses are locally-owned and mostly homegrown.” A news release from the SBA says this is the inaugural year for the Community of the Year award, which highlights community efforts to support small business. Reischl says Manning is also one of 52 Main Street Iowa communities.
“As we move forward and recruit businesses, we purposefully aim at businesses that have employees from ten to 30,” Reischl says. “That way, if there are layoffs or if a company moves out of town, it is not a major blow.” The award will be presented to Manning at the Iowa Smart Conference in Des Moines on May 7th, while the SBA plans to re-present the award at a ceremony in Manning later this spring.