2024 Governor's Conference on Economic Development
TEA, S.D. – Local BBQ favorite, Squealer’s Smoke Shack in Tea, South Dakota, was recently approved for a $70,000 MicroLOAN. The approved monies helped fund kitchen equipment, fixtures and dining room seating in the restaurant’s newly expanded operation.
“It’s a great thing to see small businesses continuing to expand and grow in South Dakota,” said Commissioner Steve Westra, Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED). “The MicroLOAN program is designed for small businesses that need access to working capital, equipment, real estate or other fixed-asset project costs. So, when we can assist our small business partners with fulfilling an expansion, we’re proud to be a part of that project.”
Squealer’s got its start as a food truck around the Sioux Falls area in 2014. Andrea Kuipers, who owns the business with her husband Dustin and his parents Lowell and Shelley, says it’s the classic story of a father and son who shared a hobby turned passion for cooking and smoking meats and eventually it evolved it into business that quickly gained a following.
“We took the food truck to festivals, events and community fairs and as popularity grew, it earned us catering gigs for weddings and other gatherings,” Andrea said. “And then as our catering business took off, we expanded to a brick and mortar site, and the support of the community allowed us to expand our current location. Guests will enjoy an expanded menu with more burgers, steaks and chicken, and they can enjoy it on the newly opened rooftop patio.”
Andrea says most of their meat is locally sourced, including two of the most popular items on the menu, the French Dip and the Chislic.
“As we weighed our options for securing financing, we talked extensively with Dan Zulkosky, Tea’s city administrator. He recommended we check in to GOED’s MicroLOAN program,” Andrea added. “We’re so glad we did. The process was seamless, and we look forward to our continued partnership.”
KELOLAND News aired a segment on Squealer’s on Tuesday, June 9 during its 10:00 p.m. segment. Click here to watch it. Squealer’s menu can be found at squealerssmokeshack.com/menu-catering. For more information about the MicroLOAN program and other financing programs available, visit GOED’s website, sdgoed.com/financing-incentives.