BISMARCK, N.D. (KXNET) — While many local businesses are planning to expand or move into Bismarck over the next year (including spas and full entertainment centers), the changing times have been difficult on others, with closures and concerns being a major feature of the most recent news. Added on to removals and hall of fame inductees, the second week in January had plenty of ups and downs. Here are the top ten stories that kept KX’s readers on the edge of their seats.

#1: Borrowed Bucks permanently closes Bismarck location

Following reports over the last weeks indicating that the popular Bismarck nightclub and bar would be reducing hours thanks to a staffing shortage, the situation has unfortunately not improved for the building. In a statement, Borrowed Bucks says that they’d like to express their thanks to the community for donating to their charity events and helping make it a hot spot of the local nightlife.

#2: Bobcat Company compact loader creators inducted into National Inventors Hall of Fame

Here in North Dakota, we’re no stranger to heavy machinery, and one of the famous names in the industry (Bobcat) is celebrating its 65th anniversary this year. It’s the perfect time for its inventors — Cyril and Louis Keller — to be honored for their contributions to modern industrial technology.

#3: Bismarck-Mandan Food Co-Op: What Happened?

Borrowed Bucks isn’t the only local business in Bismarck that is shutting its doors. After years of providing the community with locally-grown options and serving up healthy food fare, the BisMan Food Co-Op has also closed, and will only reopen for a liquidation period. What is it that led this project to shut its doors? The answer is a mix of staff shortages, bad weather, and other unfortunate situations.

#4: A Look into the details of the Baby Willow trial

During what is commonly known as the ‘Baby Willow Trial’, the jury only took a few hours to decide that defendant Torrie Vader was not guilty of child abuse. While the state reports a disagreement with the results, a testimony from Dr. Joseph Scheller (a board-certified doctor of pediatric neurology) and some additional information from the defense team — as well as an email sent to KX by the Chapman Law Firm — aim to shed more light on the finer details of this controversial case.

#5: Bismarck school board votes to censure Emily Eckroth

Emily Eckroth received a large amount of criticism from the surrounding community regarding her behavior at a routine traffic stop (described as unprofessional and disrespectful). Despite this, the school board discussed its code of conduct, and while they are unable to remove Eckroth from her position, they can censure (express public disapproval of) her actions as so many others have.

#6: Bismarck Downtowners Street Fair expands

Fall won’t be happening for a while, but the leaders of the city of Bismarck — as well as the organizers of the Downtowners Street Fair — are gearing up to expand the popular festival for 2023. With the help of the Burleigh County Sherrif’s office, they hope to make the celebration bigger and better than ever with an extra eight blocks with which to host the fair.

#7: Squaw Gap, ND officially remained Homesteader’s Gap due to derogatory name

After a year-long process to scrub offensive words from geographic locations in the US, the time has come to rename Squaw Gap here in North Dakota — a location that has a name that’s been historically used as an offensive ethnic, racial, and sexist slur towards Indigenous women. The new name was created after comments from tribes, stakeholders, and local communities, and Homesteader’s Gap is one of seven locations that received a new name across the states.

#8: Walmart removes ‘inappropriate’ boots from online marketplace: “Inconsistent with our values”

A pair of men’s hiking boots have been pulled from Walmart’s online marketplace after it was noted that they were clearly emblazoned with the letters ‘KKK’ (commonly associated with the Ku Klux Klan) on the tongue of each shoe. Walmart has confirmed that the shoes were listed by a third-party seller, never sold in stores, and were removed because they are “inconsistent with our values and violate Walmart’s prohibited product policy”.

#9: 2023 North Dakota High School Coaches Association Hall of Fame inductees named

 The North Dakota High School Coaches Association has officially announced their 2023 hall of fame inductees, featuring four new members. Learn who’s getting in in this exclusive article!

#10: Parents of Baby Willow speak out after trial

Following statements from the defense and state regarding the Baby Willow trial (listed above), Willow’s parents also sought to release their own statements about the situation. In this exclusive interview, the couple talks about living with Willow going forward and their reactions to the case.

Ten is a lot of key top stories for one week, so let’s balance things out with a great photograph. This picture of the Wolf Moon breaking through the trees was sent in to us by Carole Rhode, and was photographed in Tioga!

(Image Credit: Carol Rhode)

Are you interested in submitting your own photographs and videos of KX News? If so, learn how here! We’ll see you again next week for another edition of In Case You Missed It!