Three Sturgis companies selected for Apprentice programs

STURGIS, S.D, (KEVN) - Three Sturgis companies are recruiting new members and saving money on training by being selected for the Apprentice programs.

The U.S. Department of Labor is encouraging business growth by selecting 17 South Dakota companies for Apprenticeship programs.

Bear Butte Gardens, Sturgis Brewing Company and Scott Peterson Motors of Sturgis were all selected after months of submitting apprenticeship plans. But some are making history.

Sturgis Brewing Company is the first brewing company selected in the state.

"The groundwork is kind of set because the state never had one before so some of the work we provided I know they're going to continue to use for their apprenticeship brewer program," Sturgis Brewing Company Owner Bryan Carter said.

Dawson Johnson is their first apprentice. Johnson is not only learning how to make beer at the company. Through the program, the owner was able to take Johnson to a convention in Denver for brewing classes back in April.

But Johnson now has an invitation to see Bear Butte Gardens too.

"I think that we can probably work with the brewery. Somehow back and forth a little bit. Say if our apprentice decides they want to start growing some hops then maybe their apprentice at the brewery can help with that," Bear Butte Gardens Michelle Grosek said.

Grosek's company is the first organic farm to be selected for the program.

She says it's nice to teach someone all the ins and outs about farming for 18 months.

"to have some help here at Bear Butte Gardens. You know, with just everything here, growing and a little bit with our livestock, our organic certification, to help us step up our production," Grosek said.

She hopes to secure an apprentice in a few months.