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Elmore grocery to close

Citizens group developing plan to save store

February 19, 2012
Antonio Acosta - Staff Writer (tacosta@faribaultcountyregister.com) , Faribault County Register

The week before the Elmore City Council was scheduled to meet on Feb. 13, the talk among residents was the closing of the town's grocery store.

A sign outside the building along Highway 169 advertises a close-out sale of items.

Resident Bill Hurd attended the council meeting and told city officials he's working on a plan to try to keep the store open.

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"We wanted to get the word out. Hopefully we can get people involved. This is not a good situation for Elmore to be in," he says.

Hurd says he has about seven people working with him and will meet today to discuss the matter.

"I'm cautiously optimistic we can come up with a strategy," he says. "I'm just trying to figure out a way to make this work."

Elmore Food Center is expected to close its doors by March 1.

"When any business closes in a small town it's sad and you hate to see it happen," says City Clerk Dianne Nowak.

"People won't feel it until they have to buy that one item they have run out of and need," she adds.

Mayor Keven Sullivan says council members do not like seeing the store close, but the city probably will not become involved.

"I'd rather see private ownership. The government doesn't need to be in the grocery business," he says.

Hurd says he attended the council meeting only to let officials know that options are being explored to keep the store open.

For Hurd, it's not the first time he's become involved in a project.

When city officials were considering a site for the new library, Hurd and his late wife Nancy gave a $12,500 donation to purchase a vacant building at 107 E. Willis St.

Once renovation got under way, the Hurds donated another $50,000 to the project.

The city also used a $150,000 grant and $100,000 loan from the USDA Rural Development Agency and funds raised by Friends of the Library" to pay for the project.

 
 

 

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