Letter to the Editor: Send Them Back to Toy Land

There seems to be a lot of excitement over the impending arrival of a Fleet Farm store – the store that once had what you were looking for.

During the 1970s and ’80s, family farms literally were located within every few country miles of Door County – farms that were in families for generations. At that time, Fleet Farm was a reliable farmer’s supply source, and farmers begged the store chain to consider coming to Door County. At that time, it would have been a good investment, but Fleet Farm declined, stating there wasn’t enough interest for the company to consider investing in the area. 

Now, isn’t part of the proposed construction site part of some family-owned farmland? Now, when the number of smaller family farms has drastically declined in the area, Fleet Farm executives feel it’s a good choice. (The larger mega-farms don’t support Fleet Farm because the stores don’t carry enough supply for them. They use other outsourced, delivery-type companies.) So why would now be a good fit? 

Currently, in that area of Sturgeon Bay, there are two gas stations all boarded up, business spaces sitting vacant and other businesses struggling to find and retain reliable help to allow them to stay open and operate during their normal hours. Yet now there is excitement about Fleet Farm arriving in Door County. Come on, people!

How long did it take to fill the empty Kmart building? Subway? Hardee’s (although it’s now torn down), among others that are speckled around the area? 

Hindsight would indicate that it would be the same scene with the potential Fleet Farm building. (You know the saying, “Hindsight is 20/20.”) If there is a need for anything on the west side, remodel one of the empty gas stations into a small grocery store. 

Put more common sense into the thoughts and planning. The county can’t construct “affordable” housing fast enough to meet demand to keep people here locally. Those who are here 24/7, 365 days a year, struggle. A new building would simply – and relatively soon – become a vacant building.

Without the locals, Door County couldn’t continue to be Door County.

Julie Kroll

Brussels, Wisconsin