Badlands Activities Center News

Officials say Badlands Activities Center exceeds expectations in first year

After one year of operation, officials are saying the Badlands Activities Center has exceeded expectations and is a valuable asset for the community.

After the $16 million joint project hosted an open house in May 2010, it has been a flurry of activity.

The facility was projected to host between 40 and 60 events each year, BAC Coordinator Ben Shroyer said, and during the 2010-2011 fiscal year it held 159.

The facility is the site for university and high school athletics, but the majority of the events (101) were community happenings.

Shroyer said the high number of events boosted the budget.

“The more events, the better the revenue,” he said.

The working balance for June 8 showed that the operations were more than $62,000 in the good.

“As far as projections, we were right around where we wanted to be,” Shroyer said. “Our goal was always to make $50,000 each year to put into the maintenance fund.”

After transferring funds to the maintenance account, excess money is used for the daily operations, Shroyer said. He added that it is important to save money for repairs.

“There is money put away so we are being proactive,” he said, adding that the money would go to the replacement of the turf and track or could be used in response to situations with heating or air conditioning systems. “That way we aren’t putting ourselves in a bind in the future.”

Dickinson State University President Richard McCallum said he was excited about the progress.

“We are very pleased with the first year of operation at the BAC,” he said. “Without question this facility stands as a source of pride for the university and the community of Dickinson.”

Dickinson Visitor and Convention Bureau Director Terri Thiel said it is a great feat for the facility to end in the black in the first year.

“Any time a new facility opens, the first year, there are always unexpected things you contend with,” she said. “There is this learning curve for all new facilities, so coming out on a positive financial note is very very good.”

Shroyer said the facility has been successful because it appeals to many different customers.

“I don’t think there is anything this facility couldn’t have as an event,” he said, adding it has hosted everything from football games to concerts to weddings. “It is very multi-use, very functional and we can accommodate most things.”

Shroyer said he expects there will be even more events in the coming year.