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More Job Skid for Aberdeen as Ramada Closes

Various business closures around the state have raised concerns about too-tight labor supply. But the announcement that Dakota Lodging is closing the 51-year-old Aberdeen Ramada Inn appears to reflect too much lodging supply:

“The addition of hotels and convention space to Aberdeen has since created over-supply in a flat market…. It has become apparent that this market can no longer support three full-service hotels with convention facilities. While we feel we have the best employees in town, making the investment required to bring the building up to competitive status did not make business sense. In the end, there just isn’t enough business to sustain operations,” a Dakota Lodging representative said in the release. “This was a very difficult decision and one we did not make lightly” [Elisa Sand, “Ramada, Bully’s, TapZ to Close in Aberdeen,” Aberdeen American News, 2015.10.06].

The Ramada failure with its 60 layoffs is the third newsworthy round of job losses hitting Aberdeen in the last month. Xerox announced 20 layoffs on September 12; Wyndham announced the closure of its Aberdeen call center and axing of 240 jobs on September 9.

Hmm… 320 jobs in a month… another 80 or so, and we should have enough newly available workers to staff the Northern Beef/New Angus slaughterhouse, still scheduled to resume whacking cattle this year.


  1. Michael Wyland 2015-10-06

    FYI, reading an Aberdeen American News story beyond the first paragraph online requires a subscription.

  2. Porter Lansing 2015-10-06

    That Ramada was home base when we studious and stern twenty somethings from Watertown did an Aberdeen road trip in the early 70’s. Hello MICHAELS. lol

  3. Nick Nemec 2015-10-06

    We had my daughter’s July wedding reception in the Aberdeen Ramada. While the banquet food was very good, the hotel area and rooms were in disrepair, and the hotel area air conditioning was totally inadequate. The AC in the banquet area was fine.

  4. Nick Nemec 2015-10-06

    The workers should be able to find replacement jobs without much difficulty. I wouldn’t hold my breath waiting for New Angus to begin operation anytime soon.

  5. Don Coyote 2015-10-06

    No surprises here since Wyndham owns the Ramada brand. Wyndham is undergoing restructuring which means they are dumping dodgey infrastructure like their sketchy reservation system and aging facilities in marginal markets.

  6. Thomas 2015-10-06

    I used to live in Aberdeen and I travel there often on business. This property is in serious disrepair. Had to stay there a night a couple years back (because all the other hotels were full in the middle of a September week) and I swore I’d never stay there again. It’s a hole. They have not reinvested enough in that place and they twisted every dollar out of it like wringing the water from a rag. No way can you blame this on anything but it being a craphole where nobody wants to stay. Saturated market my ass.

  7. Deb Geelsdottir 2015-10-06

    MN has more job openings than any time since 2001. So if SD doesn’t want to pay you, come to Minnesota! You’ll get decent wages and benefits, good schools for your children, and great care for your health. Work for Polaris in Medina (not Twin cities) or Arctic Cat in Thief River Falls (not Twin Cities) or on a dairy or turkey farm, etc. There are thousands of jobs not in the metro.

    Maybe if enough people leave the SD Koch/Republicans will finally realize they need to treat the workforce respectfully. Or maybe they’ll use their skills in corruption to cheat taxpayers out of more money in another scam.

  8. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-10-06

    Interesting thought, Deb—teach ’em a lesson by leaving! But drain the workforce, and you drain the consumer-driven economy. Losing more workers to Minnesota would drive us into more dire straits well before the GOP/Koch corporatists would succumb to the need to pay higher wages, and economic desperation would lead to even worse policy… and yes, in the meantime, their corruption would run even more rampant as they sack the ruins.

  9. Roger Elgersma 2015-10-07

    When cities try so hard to get new businesses to come to town they should realize that letting the current businesses do well is more important than to bring in to much competition. Bringing in manufacturing to export products builds wealth, bringing in more services than the local economy can sustain is not productive. If service industries are doing well, they will come on their own.

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