Letter to the Editor: Formula for Success

Ellison Bay is the lucky recipient of a new business destined for success.  

The Last Stop, a gas and mechanical service station (with more fun additions planned) is carrying on the torch of Kenny Goebbel, whose service station has been an Ellison Bay landmark since the ’70s.

The new owners, Vaughn and Jorrie Simmons embrace all the hallmarks of successful business:

  • They are offering something the community needs, at a fair price.
  • They like people, so they smile and are friendly and service-oriented.
  • They answer their phone and return calls.
  • They love and care about helping the community, and CHOSE to live here.
  • They personally work in their business.

Those qualities may seem easy and obvious for any small business that wants to be successful.  But oddly, it is the exception rather than the rule. Think about any business you like or dislike, put them up against these qualities and you will know it is true.

We didn’t need another gift shop, another coffee shop, another anything. Because Ellison Bay doesn’t need to be Sister Bay, Fish Creek or Egg Harbor. It is more like authentic Door County than any other community up here.  

People who actively choose the north end for their home, obviously do so for reasons not based on defining “progress” as more development or businesses. I have spoken to people over the decades who are here because they were born here, or their family had a summer home here, or they married someone who lived here. Some of those people fall in love with the area. Some want it to be different or more “developed.”

But when you CHOOSE to move here out of anywhere you might go, it means this is where you want to be. And that makes you happy.  

This is why the Simmons’ are here, and we are so lucky they have given us the gift of their new business. And they should be named business of the year for getting it exactly right.


Susie Watson

Gills Rock, Wis.

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