Door County Rock & Gem (DCRG) hosted a groundbreaking ceremony Oct. 20 at the north Ephraim site where its new location will be built this winter. The attendees were friends, family members, employees and professional partners who have all had a hand in growing this unusual retail business. Owner Scott Barnes thanked everyone for their role during the past seven years in helping DCRG to grow.
He gave special thanks to Julie Barnes for being such a supportive partner and wife during this journey – it was her idea to build the new building and operate the business year-round – and to manager Gabriella Rose Munson-Berkley, her daughter Luna, and Mike Barnes for their hard work and commitment in helping to bring this project to fruition. Barnes also thanked his parents-in-law, Clint and Joyce Gereau, for believing in their son-in-law’s crazy ideas.
Julie Barnes has owned and operated Ephraim Motel for 21 years. DCRG started as an idea and a few quartz crystals on the front desk of the motel seven years ago. Popularity grew quickly, and the following year, a seasonal store opened a few doors down. In 2018, a second shop opened in Fish Creek’s Founder’s Square.
Being built next door to Ephraim Motel, the 6,000-square-foot building will be Wisconsin’s largest retail rock shop and remain open year-round to offer a huge inventory of crystals, minerals, jewelry, fossils and more, plus an expanded version of the popular “mining sluice” activity. The new store is scheduled to open May 1, 2022.