• VEX Robotics Camp
  • Gigabit fiber network installation
  • "Smart" classroom in BSU's Memorial Hall
  • Da Vinci robotic surgery system at Sanford Bemidji Medical Center
  • Computer coding club
  • Multimedia conference facilities in the Mayflower Building
  • Radiation oncology at Sanford Bemidji Medical Center
  • Minnesota Lt. Gov. Tina Smith tours GigaZone servers
  • Virtual snowplow simulator

City Leans Forward to Offer Cutting-Edge Tech

Bemidji’s 19th-century lumberjack mascot might not suggest that technology would be its strong suit, but leaders and entrepreneurs are determined to be among the state’s best.

Paul Bunyan happens to also be the name of a regional communications cooperative that shook things up in 2014 by announcing “GigaZone” — a fiber-optic network capable of delivering data at a rate of one gigabit per second.

As work continues on that ambitious four-year project, other local players continue to up their own technology capabilities and services. Greater Bemidji and community partners opened the Mayflower Building, an economic development hub in downtown Bemidji that features the latest in audio-visual presentation equipment.

Bemidji State University is using the very latest “smart classroom” technology in newly renovated Memorial Hall, home to BSU’s business and accounting programs. The Sanford Bemidji Medical Center has long exceeded expectations with its surgical and diagnostic capabilities.

Technology is also a focus of local entrepreneurship, as people discover a community prepared to support their ideas with the necessary infrastructure and expertise.