|Gering supermarket set for March opening|
|January 12, 2012 Jerry Purvis|
Ben Dishman of Ogallala, said he wanted to pursue the dream of owning his own business, announced his tentative plan to open a supermarket in Gering on March 7, 2012.
The name of the store will be Fresh Foods, an independent grocer. Affiliated Foods will be the distributor for the store.
Dishman said he first heard about a potential supermarket in the old Sun Mart building about four years ago. “The City of Gering had sent out a request for proposals to anyone who would be interested in opening a supermarket in Gering. I worked with the city to explore the possibility, but it didn’t work out at the time. I didn’t think we could do it the right way.”
Sometime later, one of Dishman’s friends picked up the project with the idea of opening the supermarket as a partnership. That arrangement also failed to materialize.
“The third time around was when Josh Berger at the Woodbury Corporation purchased the building,” Dishman said. “Josh contacted me about two years ago and asked if I was still interested. We started discussing the idea and found out it could work.”
Dishman said he’s always wanted to have his own business and do his own thing. “It’s all part of that American dream, so when the building became available, I decided to make a go of it.”
Dishman has been working as manager of Sun Mart in Ogallala and until recently remained anonymous due to confidentiality concerns.
“My family has vacationed here and we really like the area,” he said. “We took our kids to the zoo, the monument, Chimney Rock and different places around the area. We felt the community would be a great fit for the business.”
Developer Josh Berger of the Woodbury Corporation said his company still plans to be in Gering in the next few weeks to make an official announcement. He added that although the story had gone public in the media earlier, his company had no involvement with the disclosure.
“We’re still shooting for a tentative March 7 opening,” Dishman said. “We’re pretty positive that will work, but with ongoing construction, that could change.”
Dishman described the Fresh Foods supermarket as “very clean and very new.” They plan a sit-down deli, a full service meat department and a liquor department.
“We’ll also have friendly service and plan to take care of our customers,” he said. “We’re really looking forward to serving the community.”