Opening the Door to DC in GB

If folks are too busy during the holiday season to travel to Door County to buy holiday gifts, why not bring Door County to them, thought John Kugle.

Kugle is a Door County resident whose day job is securing mall space. With his mall connections, he learned that a 4,000-square-foot store that used to house Coldwater Creek at the Bay Park Square Mall in Green Bay was open through the holidays. So he decided to invite Door County businesses to sub-lease space to sell a Door County Christmas to Green Bay shoppers.

“I’m leasing the space myself and I sub-lease it to the other businesses that either manage their space or pay me a commission to do it,” Kugle said. “Some players are bigger than others. The anchor is Fish Creek Oilerie, no doubt. Curt (Campbell, owner) has been awesome to work with. Trail’s End and Gage are there. Decorator’s Gallery out of Egg Harbor is there.”

“John did all the recruiting for it and just asked if we would be interested,” said Clarence Scherer of A Decorator’s Gallery. “We brought down some art items. I contacted Sammi Rae’s and brought down some of her products, and Jorn’s Maple syrup and Cherry De-Lite. We’re getting a good reaction from the people who come in. People are saying it’s a good idea because they don’t have time to get to Door County this time of year. We’re all just trying to expose more people to the Door County experience.”

“We’re very excited to be a part of Door County Christmas John put together,” said Gage Meyer of Gage. “It kind of brings a little bit of Door County down to Green Bay. We have such a following down in Green Bay, it’s a neat idea to do this for the holiday. John is really quite an entrepreneur. He’s been trying so hard to get it going.”

Other businesses taking part in Door County Christmas include Automatic Chef, Colorful, Rock Art and Door County Candle.

“We’re looking for more businesses, if they want to come down,” Kugle said. “I’d love to see two or three more businesses come down for the rest of December.”

Kugle is simultaneously conducting a food drive for a church-run food pantry in Oconto Falls that is having trouble keeping its shelves stocked. “Anyone who brings in a canned good will receive a gift from me,” he said.

Businesses interested in joining Door County Christmas should contact Kugle at 920.851.6567.