Cherry Grove Market: Serving the community and beyond for 10 years
by Karin L. Nauber
When Nevin and Lynette Martin purchased Cherry Grove Market located in Browerville on May 15, 2020, they weren’t really sure what they were getting into.
It was during the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic when things were still unknown.
Nevin was more experienced in operating the small goat dairy his family owned along with working part-time building mini barns.
“I was totally new to the retail business. It has been a huge learning curve and still is,” he said of the major shift in his and his family’s life.
Nevin and his family attended the same church as the previous owners Robert and Linda McDowell.
“I knew it was for sale and I wanted to keep it going,” said Nevin of his decision to purchase the business.
Part of the reason for the sale of the market was that Linda McDowell’s mother was ailing and she and Robert decided to move back to northwestern Pennsylvania. Once there, they decided to make it a permanent move.
The McDowells began the business in January of 2011.
One of the reasons that Nevin and Lynette were interested in buying the business was that “it gives us a place to work with our family.”
In fact, some of their six children are busy playing in the office and helping put carts away among other things. The oldest is 10 while the youngest of the Martin children is two.
It has been a huge undertaking for the Martin family, but overall the transition has been going well.
The biggest challenge for Nevin has been managing inventory.
“Last year was kind of a crazy time to learn. It is always a work in progress,” he said.
He was thankful that many of the employees remained when he purchased it.
“They really helped me. They taught me a lot during the summer,” he added.
The ability to get inventory comes and goes as supply and demand fluctuate.
“I think a lot more people are cooking at home. The demand for at-home supplies has stretched my suppliers because they, too, have seen an increase in demand at levels of volume they have not seen before, either,” explained Nevin.
Customers come from all over Minnesota and some from even further away. . .