North Dakota

Ernie Borr was a band director from Mandan, North Dakota who was an early supporter of the Eckroth Music store.  Ernie was on hand for the Eckroth Music Center's 40th anniversary party in July 2012 and recalled the early days of calling on the store to help him with his school band instruments and...
Jeff Eckroth is the son of the founders of Eckroth Music in North Dakota.  His parents, Bill and Mary Ann, established the store in 1972 and Jeff recalls numerous stories about growing up in the store and in the industry he would come to love.  Jeff helped develop the store’s combo business and...
Bill Eckroth enjoyed being a band director in his home town of Mandan, North Dakota, just across the Missouri River from Bismarck.  He started out teaching junior high school students, many of whom he would meet later in his life after he decided, in 1972, to open a music store.  Along with his...
Mary Ann Eckroth quietly sat behind the desk working on the books while her husband Bill traveled to the local schools to help the band directors.  She took care of the customers and cleaned the store when he would travel for industry meetings, and she taught herself many of the business practices...
Don Langlie had a wonderful experience for ten years as a band director, mostly in North Dakota, which he enjoyed very much.  When he applied for a job at Popplers Music in Grand Forks, Don took with him his interest in teaching, which has served him well as a music retailer. Don worked in the...
Bill Larsm served as a band director for over 35 years in Montana.  When he needed the support from a music store to service his bands, he called on Eckroth Music in Bismarck, ND.  Bill was so impressed by the help he received that he visited the store and got to know owners, Bill and Mary Ann...
John Larson worked in piano retail in and around North Dakota before opening his own store. He worked the area and became involved in the music programs and lessons within the community. He also became a well respected member of the National Association of Piano Travelers and would rarely miss the...
William Reynolds made his career designing signs and even a few monuments in and around Bismarck, North Dakota.  In 1977 he was hired by Bill and Mary Ann Eckroth to design their now famous logo for their music store.  The logo remains just as William had designed all those years ago.  Several...
Sam Wangler ran a music store in Bismarck, North Dakoda for 35 years before his retirement.  He taught himself guitar after hearing "Walk Don't Run" by the Ventures as a kid.  He later played in several bands in and around the area, and the passion he had for playing transferred into music...