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JENNIFER AND BOB BATEMAN owners and operators of Two Inlets Resort in eastern Becker County, were the recipients of the "Resorters of the Year" Award from the Congress of Minnesota Resorts at their fall 2009 conference. They were also honored at the Explore Minnesota Tourism Conference at Cragun's in Brainerd on Jan. 23.

Two Inlets owners are Resorters of the Year

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Jennifer and Bob Bateman, owners and operators of Two Inlets Resort in eastern Becker County, were awarded the "Resorters of the Year" Award from the Congress of Minnesota Resorts (CMR) at their fall 2009 annual conference.


They were also recognized at the Explore Minnesota Tourism Conference held at Cragun's in Brainerd on Jan. 26.

Each year, CMR presents this award to an outstanding resorter who has best exemplified the spirit and goals of the organization.

Award criteria are centered around the operation of a successful and progressive resort business, involvement in CMR activities, service to the tourism industry both at a state and local level, and community service in other areas.

The Batemans have been involved with the CMR for the past 13 years, and believe that continuing education has been a key factor in running their resort business.

"The CMR helps resort owners learn more and more about the business through conferences and workshops, statewide resort tours, their quarterly magazine and an online chat group," said Jennifer Bateman. "The CMR even has their own school, called 'The School of Resorting.'"

Being tuned in to state legislation that affects resorts is also important. The Batemans regularly participate in the CMR Day on the Hill and have also served on the CMR Board of Directors for seven years, including three years as president.

"Being involved with legislation, both at the county and state level, while sometimes challenging and frustrating, is needed to help existing resorts continue as a viable segment of the tourism industry," said Jennifer.  

Outside of the CMR, the Batemans are also active on the Park Rapids Area Chamber marketing committee, local bank board of directors, golf course board of directors, school activities and their church.

In 2005, Midwest Living Magazine selected Two Inlets Resort for a photo shoot for an 8-page feature article. The article was titled, "A Week at the Lake," and the resort was selected because it offers attractive lake level cabins, mature trees, a nice beach and plenty of room to spread out and enjoy the lake.

"We got to be the model family in the photos," said Jennifer. "It was a lot of fun, and more work than we realized!"

While raising their 3 kids, who are now old enough to help with some resort duties, this couple has been able to grow their 13-cabin resort and make it prosper. Providing a high level of service and keeping their guests' vacation experience their No. 1 priority is a key to this success.

Success has also come about by keeping close tabs on the financial side of the business and reinvesting in it, by continually making big and small improvements and adjusting their rates accordingly. They've added two 4-bedroom cabins, upgraded several other cabins, improved the landscaping and added amenities.