Enchanted Highway Needs Visitors To Storm the Castle - KXNet.com - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

Enchanted Highway Founder Needs More Visitors To Storm the Castle

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The old Regent high school has been converted into a medieval tourist destination, but modern-day guests haven't been storming the Enchanted Castle just yet.

The owner and operator of the Enchanted Highway and Castle says he is actually trying to keep his business afloat.

 

"I needed to find of funding the Enchanted Highway, in other ways than myself, donations and so-forth." says Enchanted Highway and Castle founder, Gary Greff.

Thousands of visitors drive the Enchanted Highway in western North Dakota, but the newest addition, at the end of the road in Regent, has not put people under its spell just yet.

 "We opened May 7th, last year, and we're in our first year, and I guarantee you wouldn't get no income tax this year either way, we are struggling to stay open..." says Greff.

The founder, Gary Greff is asking the State Board of Equalization for a five year, 100 percent income tax exemption.

"I know there's a lot of hotels out there that probably are saying the same thing, but they're not in Regent, North Dakota." says Greff

Although he says two to three thousand visitors have toured the Castle, and it had many guests during pheasant hunting season, the new business is under siege.

Until it gets on the map as a hot-spot, he's hoping for some lee-way when it comes to lodging taxes, because it was built as a tourist attraction in southwestern North Dakota.

 "You don't find that in Dickinson, you don't find it in Bismarck, I don't care which hotel you look at, there's no one that comes up with the uniqueness that I've created there." says Greff.
Even though it's a one-of-a-kind, the board decided to discuss the issue with the Commerce Department before making a decision.

 "Because this is somewhat precedent-setting for us." says Cory Fong, North Dakota Tax Commissioner.

Until a decision is made, Greff says it's back to his reality in Regent.

 "I got to go back to figuring out how to keep the doors open, keep the next sculpture painted, and the next that, and that to me takes dollars, it's been a one-man show,one man show is wearing out." says Greff.

 

 

Greff says they're hoping to add a Steakhouse this summer.

He also has plans for a new piece of artwork along the Enchanted Highway, a 70 foot spider web, but he says he first needs land to put it on, and it would take around two years to complete.

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