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WDAY: The News Leader

Published July 24, 2013, 08:13 PM

Perham touts year-round vacation living to lure new residents

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV)-- Want to "live your vacation" all year round? Well city leaders say Perham is the place for you.

By: Kay Cooley, WDAY

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV)-- Want to "live your vacation" all year round? Well city leaders say Perham is the place for you. The number of jobs has out grown the number of people. Leaving a lot room for opportunity.

Dennis Happel- Long Time Resident: "Fun place to live."

The city streets in Perham are more vibrant than ever.

Happel: "Great countryside, nice shops, progressive people."

The only problem, right now there aren't enough people, to keep up with a big boom in business, like KLN's continuous growth.

Charlie Nelson- KLN VP of Sales and Marketing: "The number of jobs has grown more so than the number of families."

In fact, Perham has more jobs than people.

3,400 jobs, and only 3,000 full time residents.

So employees are working hard fill the extra spots.

Nelson: "The biggest challenge is finding good people"

Big names like KLN have added about 400 jobs in the past few years.

Kelcey Klemm- Perham City Manager: "And it's not done"

So they've come up with the motto, "live your vacation!"

Nelson: "A lot of beautiful lakes here. We have a lot of people coming here for the summer months. We'd love to keep them."

The city is finding that instead of moving here, people are just extending their commutes and coming to town for the day. So it's trying to find ways to make people's time in Perham more permanent.

Klemm: "An employee who is invested in the community, who has a home in the community, is more likely to stay with the company, stay in the community."

Ideally bringing in business year round.

Happel: "Well it is a great place to raise your children, have a lot of fun, get involved in community things."

All to build a thriving tomorrow. Perham city and business leaders are meeting tomorrow to discuss marketing strategies and incentives for the city to help boost its population.

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