If the outdoors is your thing, you've come to the right place. The Lakes Region's economy is anchored in tourism with boating, fishing and swimming during warm weather months, plus skiing, snowmobiling and ice fishing in the winter.
“You can't drive two minutes without running into a body of water in the Lakes Region,” says Carmen Lorentz, executive director of the Belknap Economic Development Council. “There are year-round attractions that make outdoor recreation a big part of life around here.”
While adventure opportunities result in tourism being a major industry in the Lakes Region, the overall economy is much more diverse. For example, the health care industry is also a top employer that offers quality jobs to residents.
“LRGHealthcare runs the two hospitals in our area – Lakes Region General Hospital and Franklin Regional Hospital – plus has many clinics and physical rehabilitation facilities. So with 1,200 employees, LRGHealthcare is the largest employer in the region,” Lorentz says. “There is an older population in the Lakes Region, so health care is a vital industry today and for years to come.”
Also Impacting the Economy
In addition, the local economy features numerous small businesses that include coffee shops, campgrounds, car dealerships, art galleries and golf courses. Meanwhile, local governments and public school districts also provide many jobs, while other schools with significant employment numbers include Lakes Region Community College, New Hampton School and Plymouth State University.
Advanced manufacturing remains a critical industry throughout the region, accounting for more than 10 percent of jobs.
“Manufacturing jobs are some of the best-paying in the area, with many local companies specializing in components for defense, aerospace or the medical industry,” Lorentz says. “The manufacturing sector in the Lakes Region certainly offers solid professional employment options and advancement opportunities.”
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