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Timeline: 2000s

By | Last Modified: November 16, 2017
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  • A string of tornadoes touch down on November 2, the latest recorded tornadoes ever in North Dakota
  • Papa John’s buys and converts local Little Caesars franchises


  • Horizon Middle School opens for classes, replacing Hughes (January)
  • Bismarck is hit with a major hail storm on June 9, causing millions of dollars in damage – the most insurance claims ever filed in the state of North Dakota


  • I. Keating Furniture fills former Montgomery Ward anchor at Kirkwood Mall, left empty since 1998
  • The Drumstick Cafe closes


  • Dan’s Supervalu relocates is north/Gateway store (March)
  • Bismarck’s largest public graduating class to date consists of 826 students
  • Aakers College (later Rasmussen College) opens satellite campus in Bismarck (closed in 2015)
  • Bismarck approves a public busing system, known as Capital Area Transit, with service beginning in May 2004.
  • Corwin Churchill Motor’s downtown location destroyed by fire (November)
  • Highway 83 Diner closes (December)



  • Bismarck experiences massive retail growth, with the construction of Pinehurst Square, two Wal-Mart Supercenters, Sam’s Club, Family Dollar, and a relocated Target.
  • Home Depot opens in June (closed in 2008)
  • Marshall Fields (formerly Dayton’s) closes, and the space is immediately torn down to house a new, larger Target store that opens in early 2006
  • Palace Arms Hotel (opened in 1962 as Holiday Inn) is demolished to make way for construction of the new Bank of North Dakota headquarters.
  • Former Highway 83 Diner building destroyed by fire (November)
  • Los Amigos closes and the building is demolished to make way for a new CVS/pharmacy. The building previously housed Jade Garden and Mr. Steak.


  • Eckroth Music relocates into new building, Eckroth Plaza
  • Johnny Carinos opens (December)
  • MDU relocates its corporate headquarters
  • Miracle Mart (formerly Econofoods) sells to Grand Central, in turn becoming Central Market


  • Furniture Row opens (January)
  • Bismarck breaks world record for most snow angels made in a single place, with 8,962 participants on the grounds of the state capitol.
  • Green Mill closes its Bismarck location – the second restaurant at this location to close (Houlihan’s being the other).
  • Wilhelm Buick-Olds-Cadillac closes
  • Scheels Sporting Goods relocates into the adjacent former Target location at Kirkwood Mall, after Target relocated its store in 2006.
  • Golden Corral opens (May; closed in 2016)
  • Cash Wise undergoes minor expansion, including the installation of its Little Dukes Convenience Store
  • Washington Street construction project is completed, with the widening of the stretch between Rosser Avenue and Avenue D, and the addition of a new traffic signal at the intersection of Avenue C.
  • Ruby Tuesday opens
  • Former Bismarck Grocery Warehouse is renovated and becomes Civic Square


  • Hooters opens (closed in 2014)
  • Home Depot closes its Bismarck location, less than four years after opening
  • The State Street McDonald’s is demolished, to be later replaced with a new, larger McDonald’s
  • The new Bank of North Dakota facility opens on the site of the former Palace Arms Hotel
  • The Hillside Park Waterslide is demolished due to safety concerns
  • Gold’s Gym opens inside former TJMaxx location
  • Scotty’s Drive-in changes ownership and sees several major changes, including the opening of a drive-though, and renovation. The restaurant also began to serve breakfast for the first time.
  • Classic Yard closes after eleven years
  • Cedric Theel relocates its showroom
  • Little Caesar’s Pizza returns to Bismarck, years after its former locations were converted into Papa John’s (June)
  • Ground is broken on BSC Aquatic and Wellness Center (June)
  • The first annual Rip-Roaring Rib Fest is held
  • Los Amigos Restaurant & Kirkwood Tesoro close, and are quickly demolished to make room for a new CVS/pharmacy store (August)
  • The New Liberty Memorial Bridge opens (August), and demolition on the original bridge begins immediately thereafter. On October 6, the first section of the old bridge was imploded, followed on October 29 with the remaining section.
  • American Bank Center Headquarters at corner of Rosser Avenue & 5th Street completes extensive remodel
  • Hoskins-Meyer Floral closes, after more than 100 years
  • Olive Garden opens after years of anticipation (November 24)
  • The former Bank of North Dakota facility undergoes demolition (December)
  • Bismarck receives the most snow ever in a single month, with a total of 33.3 inches, beating the former record set in March 1975. Prior to this achievement, Bismarck had already broken the record for the most snow received in December, beating out the former record set in 1916. At the time, Bismarck was also on track to beat the all-time season record. (December)


  • Bismarck hits -44oF, the coldest recorded temperature since January 18, 1950; and only one degree away from tying the lowest temperature ever recorded – the high temperature the following day was 80 degrees warmer. (January 15)
  • CVS/pharmacy opens a new north location upon relocating from Gateway Mall, where it had been an original tenant as Osco Drug (February 22)
  • Ice jams and excessive snow melt cause widespread flooding and the mandatory evacuation of 1700 residents – the worst flooding since April 1952 (March)
  • Bismarck State College unveils new logo, replacing logo in use since 1991 (April)
  • Captain Meriwether’s Landing closes
  • Rex TV & Appliance closes its doors. The company was purchased by Appliance Direct, who chose not to convert the Bismarck location. Rex came to Bismarck in 1995, and once had 3 locations in North Dakota. (April)
  • Gateway Fashion Mall completes renovation
  • Simle Middle School completes its renovation
  • Cedric Theel drops the Dodge line; Corwin Churchill in turn picks it up as part of Chrysler’s reorganization
  • A large section of River Road and the adjacent walking trail temporarily closes upon discovering the ground had become unstable.
  • Construction begins on a Sunrise Elementary in northeast Bismarck, the first grade school built in twenty years.
  • Conlin’s Furniture & Joy’s Hallmark announce that they were vacating Gateway Mall (June)
  • A new ride is added at Superslide Amusement Park called The Runaway Train (June)
  • A half-mile stretch of River Road is temporarily closed upon discovering the road and trail have become unstable and begun to sink (June)
  • Former Wilhelm Buick building is demolished, business closed in 2007 (July)
  • Renovation begins at Hillside/Lions Park – expected to be completed in 2012
  • Little Caesar’s announces intentions to open a north location, expected to open in October. The national chain made a comeback to the region when it opened a restaurant near Cash Wise Foods in 2009 after a near 10-year absence.
  • Subway relocates its South 3rd Street location into the former Sherwin Williams building, also on 3rd street.
  • Meriwether’s Landing Restaurant closes (September 5)
  • Gateway Mall owner, Raymond Arjmand, is accused of fraud by the owner of former tenant, Joy’s Hallmark. (October)
  • Easter Seals Goodwill Store opens inside former Kirkwood Hardware Hank/Ace Hardware building (October)
  • Hansen’s Menswear relocates from Gateway Fashion Mall to Interstate Avenue. (October)
  • Blarney Stone Pub opens inside the former Golden Dragon Restaurant (October 21)
  • Bill Barth announces its Saturn dealership will become a Kia dealership after Saturn’s discontinuation. (November)
  • Doctor Paul Johnson resigns as Bismarck School Superintendent upon accepting a position in Bulgaria, effective at the end of the school term (December)
  • Fowler Photography closes after 30 years (December)
  • Bobcat Manufacturing announced intentions to close its Bismarck plant after 35 years, affecting 475 jobs. Bobcat partially reverses course in 2012.
  • Conlin’s Furniture relocates to the corner of Broadway Avenue & 18th Street (December)

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