Archives for February 2013

The Exchange – an article from Howard County Business & Tourism

There’s a New Experience going on in Cresco, Iowa and it’s called The Exchange

Cresco’s Highway 9 has a new destination. This innovative business is more than the traditional, neat retail store as it connects entrepreneurs from the entire region. Step inside The Exchange and all your senses come alive!

Born and raised in Cresco, IA, owner Christine Minear has always been drawn to art and the creation process. She spent 32 years in the western United States pursuing a career in computer technology. Though successful and rewarding, in 2006 she began to pursue her artistic talents in ceramics. Never fearful of change, Christine moved back to Cresco to pursue the artist within herself.

Christine recently opened up a pottery studio called The Exchange in a historic building near downtown, along Highway 9 in Cresco. Realizing her building space could house more than her studio, Christine sought to find complimentary businesses and aspiring entrepreneurs looking to consign their wares.  The versatile and picturesque upper story is also perfect for other opportunities not found in the area.

The Exchange is now home to over 60 consigners from the tri-state area, a dance studio, and is a shopper’s delight! Over 1,800 sq ft of retail space features up-cycled furniture, leather goods, boutique designed clothing, ceramics, innovative wood products, and much more. The studio offers adult and kid pottery classes and the upstairs loft space is home to children’s dance, adult exercise classes, and massage therapy.

The surprise in this venture has been that The Exchange has become a mentoring and incubator business as well as a tourism destination. Working with numerous cosigners has given many hopeful entrepreneurs the confidence and the ability to expand their merchandise and a few are now relocating to their own store fronts. What started out as a pottery business has expanded and changed to include many entrepreneurs and businesses from Iowa and Minnesota as well as a place to bring an active, creative, and artistic environment to adults and children. This well rounded business is a must-see when traveling to Howard County!

The Exchange - a new business in Cresco, IA that received assistance from Howard County Business & Tourism

The Exchange – a new business in Cresco, IA that received assistance from Howard County Business & Tourism – currently has over 80 cosignors from MN, WI and IA

An inside look at The Exchange

An inside look at The Exchange

The above article was provided by Howard County Business & Tourism, which is staffed by CEDA employees.