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NWRPC News

Posted on: October 19, 2018

NWBDC Cooks up Funding for Northside Café, LLC

Northside Cafe.jpg

The Northwest Wisconsin Business Development Corporation (NWBDC) awarded loan funding to complete a renovation and expansion to the dining area and upgraded kitchen equipment for Nothside Café, LLC in Rib Lake, WI.

Linda Pittman has been in the foodservice industry her entire life and jumped into restaurant management with her mother, Debra Pittman, six years ago when Debra purchased the Northside Café. After learning how to run the operations, Linda took over the management position one and a half years ago and recently purchased the business and building from her mother.

“It was a great experience to get into the food business with my mother. She was such a great mentor and provided a strong partnership to help me get my footing,” said Pittman.

The location of Northside Café has steadily been occupied by a restaurant for the past 40 years.

“We pride ourselves on a small-town, diner experience that is friendly to families, tourists and longtime community members alike,” Pittman added, “The building is in need of some updates and modernization; however, the customer service and good food will continue into the future.”

Currently, Pittman operates a family restaurant that specializes in a Friday night fish fry and standard Northwood’s café meals and appetizers. The restaurant is the first attraction one would notice as they travel into Rib Lake from the west entrance.

Typically, the restaurant is full over the lunch and dinner time and on Fridays people will wait to be seated for the fish fry. Currently, the dining area can seat about 30 people, including the milk bar area.

Rib Lake is located at the entrance to a heavy tourist area and has a growing population base of younger families looking for a high quality of life and strong school system. Pittman notices a lot of her clients are return customers, but does see quite a few new people in the summertime.

NWBDC funding has provided the opportunity to modernize the dining area and kitchen with new equipment and add onto the current dining area so she can seat more people. A bigger dining room would be able to fit more people, yet keep the intimate family dining experience people are used to.

“This funding will help provide the needed updates and continue the family friendly legacy that has been community supported for over 40 years,” Pittman noted.

NWBDC’s revolving loan funding provided the needed leverage to fund the expansion of Northside Cafe. This project is expected to retain six jobs in Rib Lake, Wisconsin. To see if your business would qualify for a startup, transition or expansion loan product at NWRPC, contact loan fund manager Ken Pearson at (715) 635-2197.
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