The End of an Era. Bill’s Closed for the Final Time on Sunday

There were a few tears, lots of hugs, but mostly happy faces as the end to a 54-year run as Forest City’s grocery store closed for good on Sunday evening. Ken Korth, owner of the Bill’s Family Foods two stores in Garner and Forest City had lots of good memories in his time as the owner.

The shelves were mostly bare by closing time Sunday.

In 54 years in business, there are too many memories to mention and Korth says the time and experience has flown by. As far as one actual memory that stands out…

Korth was very honest in his feelings about the closure. When asked if he would miss the daily grind…

A number of Bill’s Family Foods employees assist the last customer in checking out while others sign pictures in the foreground.

Korth said that the transformation into a Hy-Vee will take fifteen days in Forest City and only a few days in Garner. The Forest City store will see a pharmacy where the offices and bakery were. The produce and floral area will become a wine and spirits section. The entire middle area will open up into grocery aisles and check-out-stand area.

The food that was left which were mostly cereals, soups, and other non-perishable items will be donated to area food banks and other predetermined charities. Hy-Vee may purchase some of the items, but are expected to bring in their own products for sale.

Korth knows that the people of the community were key to the success of his stores. He echoed that in his advice to the new chain moving in.

Bill’s owner Ken Korth on the right, locks the front doors for the final time Sunday night.

The Hy-Vee in Garner should be open by the 5th. The Forest City store will open on June 18th.



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