Superior Liquor, Grocery Stores Busy as Other Businesses Remain Closed

Belknap Liquor and Lounge and Super One seeing a steady influx of customers.

SUPERIOR, Wis.- Wisconsin has just gone through their first weekend with bars, restaurants and other public gathering places closed indefinitely by Governor Tony Evers.

This pushes more customers to businesses considered essential, such as grocery and liquor stores.

“We can’t complain here, yeah,” said Belknap Liquor and Lounge owner Alan Jaques.

“There’s a lot of other people that have it way worse than we do.”

Liquor stores were not included in the list of businesses required to shut their doors. And everyone from their customers to their suppliers know it.

“We’ve gotten more support from our wholesalers that are bringing in more beer and liquor,” he said. “The Budweiser wholesaler has been here four times this week.”

Belknap Liquor and Lounge had to close the bar area of the building, but with all the extra patronage to the liquor store, he’s been able to give his employees more hours there.

“The liquor store has picked up the balance of that and certainly moreso,” he said.

The owner said they’re seeing sales like the 4th of July or Christmas, but that isn’t effecting social distance too much.

“Everybody’s got that Midwestern buffer feel anyways, coming from the Midwest, so they’ve all kept their distance,” he said. “They back up at the counter if there’s more than two or three people at the counter they’ll back up and they’ve all been very respectful.”

“We’ve got some great customers in this area.”

Meanwhile the Super One in Superior is filled with not only customers, but staff who have been working far more than normal.

“Our whole staff company wide has been working long hours and overtime trying to keep up trying to get our shelves filled as fast as we can,” said Store Manager James Sundstrom.

Those shelves empty quickly, as customers hunt for essentials like toilet paper.

“We’re seeing big waves of people coming up and filling grocery carts up,” Sundstrom said.

So much so that staff put extra measures in place to maintain social distancing and limit hand-to-hand contact with customers.

“With the waves of people sometimes it’s hard to get that 6-foot distance. But we’ve been having our customers wear gloves, don’t put cash into customers’ hands, trying to keep that distance as much as we possibly can,” said Sundstrom.

Don’t panic, he added. You will get the items you’re looking for.

“There is really no shortage of product, it’s just getting the supply lines the stores,” the manager said.

“Be patient with us as we get the shelves filled.”

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