News & Events
Watermark Art Center's 50th Annual Art in the Park presented by Paul Bunyan Communications is July 22-23
The Watermark Art Center’s 50th Annual Art in the Park presented by Paul Bunyan Communications is July 22-23 at Library Park at the Lake Bemidji Waterfront.
Art in the Park has been appealing to local residents and visitors from all over the country since 1967. This juried fine arts and craft fair located in downtown Bemidji on the shores of Lake Bemidji in beautiful, tree lined Library Park and boasts an annual attendance of over 4,000 visitors during this two day event. Situated just north of the famous statues of Paul Bunyan, Babe the Blue Ox and the Tourist Information Center, “Art in the Park” features over 100 artists, a dozen food vendors and live entertainment all within easy reach and walking distance of downtown Bemidji and all its amenities.
Paul Bunyan Communications and the Bemidji Downtown Alliance Present: Mississippi Music at the Bemidji Waterfront Every Wednesday Now through August 30
Paul Bunyan Communications and the Bemidji Downtown Alliance present Mississippi Music at the Bemidji Waterfront every Wednesday through August 30! Admission is free and the concerts are from 6-8 PM featuring a new band each week.
Join us lakeside for music with food vendors and beer garden on site.
Paul Bunyan Communications has been awarded a national TeleChoice Award by the NTCA–The Rural Broadband Association during their Annual 2017 PR & Marketing Conference. The annual awards program honors excellence in public relations and marketing.
Paul Bunyan Communications was given the TeleChoice Award for their complete marketing campaign of the GigaZone Gaming Championship, the first stadium style eSporting event in the region held last November at the Sanford Center. Entries were judged on innovative strategies, design, writing, creativity and other elements specific to each category.
"We are honored to receive this national award for marketing. The GigaZone Gaming Championship was a first of its kind event we brought to the region last year aimed at gaming enthusiasts of all kinds. We spent a lot of time on the creative aspects of the campaign to ensure the message would resonate with the gaming community but also would appeal to the general public. It was a very successful event and one that will continue in the years to come. The 2017 GigaZone Gaming Championship is set for September 29-30 and will be even bigger and better than our first event last year!" said Brian Bissonette, Paul Bunyan Communications Marketing Supervisor.
"Congratulations to Paul Bunyan Communications on their 2017 TeleChoice Award" said NTCA Chief Executive Officer Shirley Bloomfield. "Creating their eSport event, the GigaZone Gaming Championship, and bringing it to customers in rural northern Minnesota is unique in the industry. It shows their commitment to their community and their willingness to be industry innovators and leaders, whether that's creating one of the largest rural all-fiber optic gigabit broadband network, or creating this wonderful gaming event. The marketing of the event was unique, creative and essential to its success. The award is well deserved and hard earned."
Annual Meeting & Cooperative Celebration Held Wednesday, May 24
The 61st Annual Business Meeting of Paul Bunyan Rural Telephone Cooperative was held prior to the Open House at 3:30 p.m. The meeting included reports for the 2016 fiscal year and the re-election of board directors Tim Hins, District 9 and Bruce Campbell, District 7 both who were unopposed at their respective Caucus held in April.
The Cooperative Celebration was open to the public and featured a free walleye dinner prepared by the Bemidji Fire Department Fish Fry Crew and Lueken's Village Foods, door prizes, kids' activities like face painting, balloons, temporary tattoos, storytelling, animals and entertainment from the Headwaters Science Center, United States Tennis Association's Quickstart Tennis, Concordia Language Villages, and special guests all four Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles from Nickelodeon and Cleatus the Fox Sports Robot. Kent Dudley as Elvis provided the musical entertainment.
Special thanks to the over 130 employees of Paul Bunyan Communications who made the event possible and run as smooth as possible! We would also like to thank the Bemidji Fire Department, Lueken's Village Foods, The Party Store, Minnesota State Patrol, Bemidji Police Department, Beltrami County Sheriff's Department, Paul Bunyan Transit, Minnesota Department of Transportation, Headwater's Science Center, Port-Able John, Bemidji Citizen's Patrol, Bemidji Area Tennis Association, Boy Scouts, Concordia Language Villages, Boys and Girls Club of Bemidji, and Raphael's Bakery for all their help.
We are excited to announce that Ashley Benes of Grand Rapids is the recipient of a $2,500 college scholarship from Paul Bunyan Communications and the Foundation for Rural Service (FRS) the philanthropic arm of NTCA-The Rural Broadband Association.
Ashley is the daughter of Anthony and Joyce Benes and a senior at Grand Rapids High School. She plans to attend the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and major in either Biology or Kinesiology then go to medical school to be an orthopedic doctor.
The FRS scholarship program awarded over $100,000 in scholarships to rural youth across the United States. Out of over 1,500 applications received this year, 47 scholarships were awarded. The goal of the scholarship program is to help further higher education opportunities among rural high school students.
In addition to providing the opportunity for local students to apply for a statewide scholarship through the Minnesota Telecom Alliance (MTA) and the national FRS scholarship program, Paul Bunyan Communications provides over $30,000 in scholarships annually to local students from within the cooperative's service territory. The scholarships are awarded through area high schools including Grand Rapids and Deer River along with post-secondary institutions like Itasca Community College, Leech Lake Tribal College, and Bemidji State University.
"Congratulations Ashley! We are honored to offer this additional scholarship opportunity to students in northern Minnesota," said Brian Bissonette, Paul Bunyan Communications Marketing Supervisor. "Our cooperative has had a commitment to education in the region for a long time and the FRS scholarship program enables rural telecommunications providers like us to show additional support of the youth living the communities they serve. It is a source of tremendous pride for us that Ashley was selected as a recipient this year!"
Paul Bunyan Communications Will Not Sell Customer Web Browsing History
Recently new federal legislation was passed that allows Internet Service Providers to sell their customers' web browsing history. Paul Bunyan Communications wants to reassure its members that no matter what the law allows they do not collect and sell member's web browsing history.
"Our members' privacy is of the utmost importance to our member-owned and governed cooperative. We have never sold member web browsing history and have no plans to do so in the future regardless of what the rules and regulations may allow," said Gary Johnson, Paul Bunyan Communications CEO/General Manager.
"As you might imagine we are getting calls from concerned customers and members of our cooperative as the news of this new legislation spreads. We feel it is extremely important to reassure our customers that our cooperative will not sell their web browsing history. It's your cooperative and your data, period. Any provider who sells their customers' web browsing history without their consent is putting profits ahead of the trust of its customers and we believe that flies in the face of common decency, customer privacy, and certainly our cooperative values and principles," added Johnson.