MANISTIQUE, Mich. — A paper mill in Manistique has re-opened after being closed by its former owner more than a year ago.
The Daily Press (http://bit.ly/2dmqYzv ) reported that the paper mill began running under the name UP Paper LLC this summer. Its previous owner, FutureMark, closed it in the spring of 2015.
Members of the Zellar family and other investors purchased the mill. Lars Dannberg, the mill’s CEO and president, said the re-opening process has been both enjoyable and anxiety-inducing.
City Manager Sheila Aldrich said the mill has always been a big part of the Manistique’s local economy.
“It certainly helped – (it) absolutely has been good for our economy,” she said.
According to Aldrich, the paper mill has been one of the city’s largest employers over the years. Some business owners also said the mill has positively impacted their stores and restaurants.
Mary Lou Hoffman, owner of Marley’s Bar and Grill, said she couldn’t deny growth in sales since last September. She thinks there could be other factors that had to do with the increase in revenue but she said a significant number of her customers in the recent months have been contractors from UP Paper.
“I would have to think the paper mill has got a bearing on that,” she said.
And Kathy Jerde, co-owner of Manistique gift shop the Mustard Seed, said this was the best summer her business ever had financially.
“I think Manistique is being discovered – I think the UP is being discovered,” she said.
Jerde also said she believes the opening of the mill has had an emotionally positive effect on the community as well.
“I would say its boosted people’s morale and sense of hope,” she said.
The mill currently has nearly 75 employees. Dannberg said that number could increase up to 100 in the future.
Information from: Daily Press, http://www.dailypress.net