The rich shale oil formation deep below the rolling pastures here has attracted droves of young men to work the labor-intensive jobs that get the wells flowing and often generate six-figure salaries.
How many young men? "In 2011, nearly 58 percent of North Dakota’s unmarried 18-to-34-year-olds were men, according to census data." What well-paid, single, young men demand is women. This has caused problems but also opportunities.
Some women have banked on the female shortage. Williston’s two strip clubs attract dancers from around the country. Prostitutes from out of state troll the bars.
Natasha, 31, an escort and stripper from Las Vegas, is currently on her second stint here after hearing how much money strippers made in Williston on a CNN report last year. Business in her industry is much better here than in the rest of the country, she said. She makes at least $500 a night, but more often she exceeds $1,000.
“We make a lot of money because there’s a lot of lonely guys,” she said.
It may also be a good place to open an STD clinic.