CLARKFIELD - A fire last October put the Family Foods grocery store in Clarkfield out of business, but it's now back up and running, said Corey Field, manager/owner.
The fire didn't damage the structure, but "all electrical and refrigeration on compressors" were destroyed, he said, plus there was water and smoke damage.
"It was a tough couple of months," Field said, referring to the clean-up and repair. "We did a lot of stuff ourselves."
Photo by Jodelle Greiner
Corey Field, manager/owner of Family Foods in Clarkfield shows off one of the new refrigeration units put in after October’s fire. He said he’s appreciative of the support he received from the community while the store was closed.
After cleaning up, everything was re-painted, a new floor was put in and "most of the refrigeration had to be replaced due to electrical surges," Field said. "Replacing the electrical and refrigeration took the longest - about a month. Plus the holidays in there slowed things down."
Having the only grocery store in town out of operation was inconvenient for the townspeople who had to find a new place to get staples. Field said the gas stations in Clarkfield stocked up on milk while his store was down, but customers "would have to go to Marshall or Montevideo," which are 24 and 15 miles away, respectively.
In time, everything was put back together and the store re-opened with Field being able to retain his employees.
"We're glad to be back up and running," Field said. "Tough being closed over Thanksgiving and the holidays. Everything's running good and the town's supporting us. I think the people appreciate us opening back up, especially with the snow storms and stuff."
Customers shouldn't have a problem finding anything; "we kept it (layout) more or less the same," Field said, adding the shelving is all the same.
"Most (customers) have noticed everything in here is cleaned up and new coolers and stuff like that," Field said. "Things should run better and be more economical and efficient."