Amid its brown and gold farm fields, American Falls just a got a little bit greener.
Idaho Central Credit Union has planted itself at 246 Idaho Street and held an open house on Nov. 21, bringing its interpersonal services to a community that has been asking for the green credit union for years.
“For years, maybe even decades people were asking us to come to American Falls, but we weren’t a big enough company to do that,” said Kent Oram, CEO of ICCU. “But now we are. So when this building became available we thought, why don’t we go to American Falls? It’s a relatively inexpensive way to go and we can see how it goes and if it works here then maybe it’ll work in other small towns in Idaho. So in a way this is an experiment, but it’s certainly not an experiment we’re going to give up on.”
With its launch, it has become the 37th ICCU location in Idaho and the second smallest branch in the state, but this didn’t stop its open house from drawing in large crowds that filled its 4,800 square feet facility on Thursday.
To further jump-start its grand opening, there is a drawing for a 2019 Yamaha Grizzly ATV that members and non-members alike can enter to win on Dec. 20.
“Someone will be getting a nice Christmas present,” said branch manager Steven Anderson.
The building, which was bought in late 2017 and started being remodeled in early 2019, was the previous location of Wells Fargo that closed back in 2017. The new branch will be managed by Anderson, an American Falls native who has been with ICCU for about three years, with the assistance of four other team members.
Since its initial opening in late October, the reception has been booming.
“The community has just been a huge support and it’s been a really warm welcome,” Anderson said.
Oram said that although it’s a small branch in a small town, the cost accrued wasn’t large, which is good news for the future of the building.
“We were able to get this building and do the remodeling at a really good price, so we don’t have a lot invested that would drag it down financially,” he said. “We should be able to make a go at this just fine. And we have really good reception so far from the community. Sometimes we have open houses in great big places with not this many people.”
On Thursday, Anderson said that in addition to its services, the branch will be focusing on bringing community support to the area.
“What ICCU represents is community involvement,” Anderson said. “We want the community to know that we are there to support them. That’s how we all grow together.”
“As far as credit unions, we love support, we love seeing great community support from all institutions within the (area),” he added further. “What we hope to see is that as we are involved in the community other institutions will get involved as well. We push others to do the same.”
American Falls’ ICCU branch is open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., with the drive-through open at 8:30 a.m.
“Here in American Falls we are not currently open on Saturdays, but any of our other locations are open Saturdays 9 am to 3 p.m., so if you happen to be in Pocatello on Saturday you can pop right in,” he said.