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Forbes Magazine: Commerce is Thriving in Las Cruces

POSTED: Monday, September 5, 2011 - 4:39pm

UPDATED: Monday, September 5, 2011 - 4:42pm

LAS CRUCES- It’s a banner holiday for Las Cruces. Forbes magazine calls it one of the best small cities for business and careers.

When Gary Ebert relocated his family from Boise, Idaho to Las Cruces three years ago, southern New Mexico seemed like the perfect place to grow his business.

"Las Cruces is a very unpretentious place. What you see is what you get. The people are friendly. There is a lot of diversity here, but people don't call it diversity, they call it just getting along," said Ebert.

Ebert took the risk and opened Zeffiro Pizzeria Napoletana in the heat of the recession.

"We thought we'd have 30 to 40 customers, our first day we had 150 customers. We had waiting lines out the door. We were totally unprepared for it quite honestly," said Ebert.

And last winter, Ebert was able to open a second location, providing more jobs for people in the community.

"When you look at the national statistics, 90 percent of new jobs being created are from small business. Ok. And that's what the community needs," said Ebert.

Business owners in Las Cruces say that the reason the city is so great for business, is because business owners stick together.

"We really do try to help people so they can stay here, so we can try to make the community better and have more people come in," said Elva Grandos, business owner.

College student Eric Gamez says there are many different industries in Las Cruces that might be able to keep out of state students in New Mexico.

"For agriculture, I mean it is perfect to definitely stay around here. If you are trying to do something like film, New Mexico is starting to get really big with that, so staying within the area and keeping it local is a good thing,” said Gamez.

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