If you've never been to a Dollar General, it's not a dollar store where everything sells for $1. It's a discount store with good prices on name brand products and generic products with the DG logo. It's the store where I would most often purchase paper products, cards, laundry and cleaning products, and Steve loves their microwave popcorn (light butter - 3 bags in a box for $1).
I wrote to Dollar General (and Aldi's) about 1-1/2 years ago suggesting that they expand into this area. I got a nice note back from them (and Aldi's) at that time - thanking me for my letter and telling me that they're always looking for new markets and would pass my suggestion on to the appropriate department. I was so excited to find out that the new building going up on 6th Street here in Calumet this summer was going to be a Dollar General. Now, I highly doubt that I'm the reason they chose to expand into Calumet, but I was happy about it anyway.
More back story: Steve enjoys Nascar, so we follow it. I have a special interest in Matt Kenseth (even though he drives a Toyota). Why? Well, I grew up between Stoughton & Cambridge, Wisconsin. Matt's from Cambridge, and his father went to school with my mother. Steve says Matt Kenseth reminds him of my older brother, Dale. He thinks Matt looks like Dale and talks like him - must be the south-central Wisconsin connection. So, when it comes to Nascar, Matt's my "homie," and he drives the #20 Dollar General car.
Cut to last week: I received a flyer in the mail telling me that the new Calumet Dollar General store was going to have their grand opening on Saturday, August 9, beginning at 8:00 a.m. The first 50 customers would receive a $10 gift card, and the first 200 customers would receive a goodie bag. So, guess where I was at 7:45 a.m. on Saturday? Yep, standing in line outside of Dollar General. Yep, on a Saturday. Yep, I did say 7:45 a.m. The doors opened right on time at 8:00 a.m. Guess who was customer #50? Yep, it was me! I got the last $10 gift card and a goodie bag! If that's not enough, the flyer also had a $5 off coupon if you spent $25. I did, so I got some good prices on my purchases, and I used the $10 gift card and the $5 coupon. Yep, I know - you're impressed!
The store manager was handing out the gift cards at the door. I made sure I told him about my letter to corporate 1-1/2 years ago. I also told him that my mother went to school with Matt Kenseth's father. Yep, I'm sure he was appropriately impressed. The lady in front of me turned around and said, "You deserve to be the 50th customer." I know! I know! I even impress strangers! (wink, wink, chuckle, chuckle)
Now, if I can just convince Aldi's and Menards to build in Calumet or Houghton, we'll never have to leave the peninsula!
All is well in the Keweenaw.