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Blake and Tyler: Homegrown Entrepreneurs Photo

Blake and Tyler: Homegrown Entrepreneurs

Blake, Tyler and another man.

Blake and Tyler speaking

Blake and his wife.

Blake and Tyler

Blake and Tyler are proud to call Yankton home. The twins were born and raised here. “We’ve lived here twenty-four years,” Blake shared. “We’re not going anywhere else, that’s for sure; we’re sticking tight! We love it here!”

Although they moved away to go to college, they always knew that they would want to come back. “I went to SDSU for a four-year degree in agronomy, I graduated and then came back home. Neither of us wanted to move away, that wasn’t a goal of ours. But going to college made me realize how good Yankton is,” Tyler said. “It brought us back here – you get away for a while and then you realize: I really need to come back.”

Blake had a similar experience. “Right out of high school, five or six days after graduation, I took off with Air National Guard down to Texas, and then went down to Arizona for about a year. I really noticed how nice it was back home.” He moved back to South Dakota, and “then I started school at USD and graduated with a business management degree.”

They started a business mowing lawns when they were in sixth grade, which they still run, but their first love is farming. “Right out of high school we started farming. That’s been our passion since we can remember! We grew up with Dad working the family farm of a friend. We’d ride in the tractor with him. As little tykes we’d try to stay awake as long as we could, but by the end of the day, both of us would be sleeping in the corners of the cab and it was time to go home.”

As serial entrepreneurs, they understand the importance of hard work. They bought Buhl’s, a local dry cleaning business, and have expanded from Yankton to Brookings, Mitchell, and Huron. “We’ve had some growing pains, but we’re starting to get things figured out,” Blake said. Tyler also sells Pioneer seed to area farmers, an endeavor that he and his brother hope to expand in the coming years.

There’s more to the twins than business, they also love Yankton’s outdoor recreation opportunities. “Farming, I guess is our hobby,” Blake joked, but “hunting and fishing are our other hobbies. We’re big into deer hunting. Our parents have a boat, so we like to spend some time out on the lake as well. We’re avid outdoorsmen, we like to join clubs like Pheasants Forever.”

They enjoy traveling, but that does not stop them from being active community members. “We’re members of the Chamber,” Blake explained. “I’m a member of the Elks and Tyler is soon to be as well. We like to help out with the Special Olympics whenever we can. Our uncle was very involved with that and that’s what got us started.”

The twins shared their entrepreneurial experiences at One Million Cups. “One of the things that we included in our slideshow at One Million Cups was about making the most of your opportunities,” Tyler said. “One of our other goals by going to One Million Cups is hopefully we can draw other young people down there and get the younger generations involved!”

When we asked them how others could follow a similar path they responded, “there are people out there willing to give you a chance if you put forth the effort. We’ve found that with the farming and with the dry cleaning business. As long as you’re out there trying, people are going to notice that and in the long term that’s going to pay off.”

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Yankton, SD 57078
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