INFORUM.com | WDAZ.com

WDAY: The News Leader

Published May 06, 2014, 08:41 AM

CORRECTION: Casey's General Stores starts transition of Stop-n-Go; one store in Fargo to close

FARGO – Beginning today, drivers will notice area Stop-n-Go signs start to come down as Casey’s General Stores officially acquires the Fargo-based regional chain of convenience stores.

By: Sherri Richards, INFORUM, Forum News Service

FARGO – Beginning today, drivers will notice area Stop-n-Go signs start to come down as Casey’s General Stores officially acquires the Fargo-based regional chain of convenience stores.

CORRECTION: Stop-N-Go gift cards will only be taken as long as the store is a Stop-N-Go. Casey’swill no longer be able to process Stop-N-Go gift cards when the store switches over.

Casey's will accept valid 2014 car wash coupon (non expired) and only 2014 coupons will be accepted (no exceptions) until 12-31-2014. After that date Casey's will no longer accept or exchange Stop-N-Go car wash coupons.

Three area Stop-n-Go stores will not be making the switch to Casey’s, and instead will close.

The Stop-n-Go stores in Wahpeton, N.D., Fergus Falls, Minn., and at 3216 12th Ave. N. in Fargo will shutter as a result of the sale.

Bill Walljasper, senior vice president and chief financial officer of Ankeny, Iowa-based Casey’s General Stores, said the locations were selected for closure for a number of reasons.

If an existing Casey’s store is in close proximity, it doesn’t make sense to open another, Walljasper said.

The Wahpeton store is attached to a strip mall, which was not a desirable option. Walljasper said Casey’s is looking for land in the town in order to build.

“That’s a community we’d like to be in. We want to make sure we’re going to be in that community long term, and that’s (the current location) not a long-term solution,” he said.

The Wahpeton store, near the North Dakota State College of Science, will close Sunday night, said manager Lana Althoff.

Of its 15 employees, some part-time workers have found other jobs, Althoff said, but its four full-time employees, including her, have not.

Althoff said she has worked at that location for more than 30 years.

“I’m really going to miss the customers. You get to know them, and they become friends and family,” she said.

The Fargo location closes today, its manager said. The Fergus Falls store closes at 9 a.m. May 15.

Walljasper said when Casey’s purchases stores it tries to retain all staff, transferring them to other stores when possible.

Casey’s announced in February it was purchasing the 20 Stop-n-Go locations in North Dakota and four in Minnesota. Walljasper said at the time that the acquisition would hopefully “springboard” further development into North Dakota.

Casey’s now has nearly 1,800 stores in 14 states and employs more than 27,000 people. Its revenue for fiscal year 2013 was $7.3 billion.

Stop-n-Go was founded in 1974, when Shelly Ellig purchased the stores from Mid-America Dairies.

Ellig, a noted philanthropist, died in 2010.

Repeated requests for comment from Stop-n-Go President Sheila Carney went unanswered.

Walljasper said all the stores should be switched over by May 15. Most if not all the newly minted Casey’s stores will be remodeled, he said, adding in prepared food operations that include fresh-made pizzas, made-to-order sub sandwiches and doughnuts.

Readers can reach Forum Business Editor Sherri Richards at (701) 241-5556

Tags: