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Dave Olson, Published April 19 2013

Trade Talk: Salt Lake City-based company picks Wahpeton for product manufacturing

Fixes 4 Kids, a company that is working on developing a family of products to help doctors fix children’s broken bones, has teamed with a Wahpeton, N.D., firm to build its devices.

Based in Salt Lake City, Utah, Fixes 4 Kids has contracted with the ComDel Innovation plant in Wahpeton to manufacture products such as the recently launched E-Fix and E-Thotic.

The devices aim to help doctors reset, pin and immobilize elbow fractures, which are among the most common fractures in children ages 3 to 12, said Kurt Vedder, Fixes 4 Kids founder and CEO.

Vedder said the E-Fix system eliminates current procedures that require pulling on a child’s arm to set fractures, procedures that if not performed properly may lead to additional risks to patients.

As part of its move to North Dakota, Fixes 4 Kids received funds from a number of local investors, including Linn Grove Ventures.

Fixes 4 Kids also received economic development incentives from the state of North Dakota, and it has a relationship with the Bank of North Dakota’s Development Fund and the North Dakota Venture Fund.

“We’re making products that will help the physician manage very complex fractures with better outcomes,” Vedder said. “Where there’s no technology today, we’re bringing technology to that practice.

“Right now,” he added, “we’re working with the elbow. We’ll go to the forearm next.”

Sky-high boardings

For the first time ever, Fargo’s Hector International Airport saw boarding numbers top the 40,000 mark, with March 2013 the busiest month on record at the airport.

“That’s a milestone,” said Shawn Dobberstein, the airport’s executive director.

Airport numbers show 40,054 passengers boarded planes at Hector in March and 42,474 passengers arrived.

“This is the first time we’ve broke the 40,000 barrier,” Dobberstein said.

“When I started with the airport in 1991, the goal of the (Airport Authority) board was to maintain 20,000 passengers a month. Here we are 20 years later, and double that,” Dobberstein said.

He said the airport gets pretty busy at certain times of day, especially in the morning, and he said a little bit larger concession area in the departure lounge would be welcome.

“It would be nice to have another gate,” he added. “We have five now; it would be nice to have a sixth.”

Mid-Mod opens

Mid-Mod Madhaus has opened at 115 Roberts St. in Fargo.

Owner Brett Bernath sells restored midcentury modern furniture and home furnishings.

He said the store is the culmination of what began as a personal collecting obsession to furnish his own house.

Hours are noon to 7 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. It is closed Monday.

Bernath may be reached by email at brett@midmodfargo.com.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Dave Olson at (701) 241-5555