Chamber Update On Absence Of Shopko, Shop Local Guide

WAYNE – Work continues following the departure of Shopko in Wayne as the Wayne Area Economic Development office will also be gathering more information for another update to their shop local guide.

Executive Director with WAED, Luke Virgil joined Dan on the “View from Wayne America” last Wednesday.

One of the main focuses for the chamber office is working towards filling the void of Shopko going out of business this past summer.

Virgil said there’s not too much he can talk about, but he doesn’t want people to think they’re sitting ideally.

“There is a lot of working behind the scenes on this,” said Virgil. “I can say that I think it’s pretty common knowledge now at least in our circles at the chamber office that Ace Hardware has been looking at the community and that’s something that we’re still pursuing.”

There is also communication with the current building ownership with a question being brought up of will the building be leased or sold.

Ace Hardware has a wide variety of product besides just the traditional hardware. Another hurdle that could be created for this franchise is people have to put money together to do a local store in getting the investment put together and renovations to the current building.

In Virgil’s opinion, the biggest question mark is who is going to run the store.

“We have to find a really good manager and probably as just as good as of an assistant manager to be able to run that that store,” Virgil added. “They have to be community-minded; they have to be aware of what the community needs. If Ace has the products that we think that they have they have to be able to navigate that system and find the products that Wayne actually needs.”

Over the spring Luke was joined by other corporate partners who weren’t too interested with the population base and not having a major highway going through town.

Also, a few weeks ago the WAED office put together their first edition focusing mainly on retailers for the students coming back and the general public to be aware what is in Wayne.

“This is not the final edition,” Virgil mentioned. “We’re going to keep working on getting that edition put back out and we’re going to have more stuff on there. We want to have a good local shopping guide and it doesn’t have to be just the retail stuff; it can be other services too.”

Stop by into the chamber office at 108 West 3rd Street to pick up a copy or like Wayne, NE on Facebook.

The complete interview can be found under the Podcast link of the Community tab on the homepage of