Two brothers from Winter have taken over a downtown Park Falls furniture store with plans to remodel the business and change its offerings.
Marcus and Trent Biller said the former Bob’s Factory Outlet will be known as Chequamegon Home Furnishings, as will its partner store in Ashland. The brothers recently completed the purchase from Bob and Patty Hilgart and are selling off the remaining merchandise in the Ashland store as they restock it with new brands.
The Hilgarts owned the stores for 14 years and are pleased that the Billers will bring a new focus to the business. They spoke with the Ashland Daily Press recently.
“They are young and energetic; they can do nothing but grow here,” said Bob Hilgart, 73. The Hilgarts are retiring are devoting more than a decade together to making the store work.
“Bob has been in it for so long and has dedicated so much of his time and knowledge to the business,” she said. “But we are so happy that we have sold it to two energetic young men who know the business, who know about furniture and have been in the business for many years. I hope people will support them as well as they supported us. We can’t thank people enough for getting us this far.”
The store will continue to offer furniture, mattresses and related merchandise n downtown Ashland.
“We are going to carry a lot of the same products, and we will be offering some new lines,” Marcus Biller said. “We will have a big line of upholstery, sofas, sectionals, love seats and recliners. We will also have rustic up-north-look log furniture and Amish furniture. They are things you can’t find everywhere.”
Biller said he was beginning to adapt to the Ashland market.
“It’s going to be a bit of a learning experience,” he said. “Every market is a little different. We are going to try and keep everything as affordable as we can.”
Biller said he and his brother feel a responsibility to join other merchants and keep the downtowns of Ashland and Park Falls alive.
“It’s good for both communities, to not have a big empty building, especially not on Main Street. When that happens it hurts the community. When storefronts are empty it doesn’t do justice to the town,” he said.
Biller said most of the staff will remain with the business as it transitions.
“Everybody who wants to stay is pretty much going to be staying,” he said.
Biller said the former owners have given him and his brother a head start by being such good stewards of the business and its workers.
“Bob has done very well in working with both locations. He treats his employees very well and they are happy and very loyal,” he said. “Several have been here since the store’s inception, and that says something.”
The store next will hold a grand opening to welcome residents to see its new wares — though the new owners aren’t sure when that will happen.
“We still need to do a bit of revamping here, but both locations will have a grand opening and we will be offering a bunch of discounts right away. In the meantime we are anxious to meet the public and find out from them what they would like us to carry,” Biller said.