Peru grocery stores puts focus on community

Pure Nebraska
Published: Nov. 10, 2022 at 10:22 AM CST|Updated: Nov. 10, 2022 at 10:38 AM CST
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) - A family-owned grocery store has opened its doors in downtown Peru, and that’s good news for the town, and for Peru State College.

Lindy Schmidt and her husband DJ first opened a local store in the town of Louisville.

“We had purchased the store there, and remodeled it,” Schmidt said. “We opened it in 2019. It was an existing store that had closed. We had great support and success there. We were always looking for another opportunity in another small community for fresh food, community and growth.”

So, the Schmidt family purchased a building in downtown Peru, that was previously a grocery store and had closed.

“We purchased this in September of 2021,” Schmidt said. “We just opened this store in September of this year.”

The store means so much to the area.

“We live in a small community, in Louisville,” Schmidt said. “When that store closed, it was devastating for us and for the town. We feel a grocery store is the heart of main street, and is something every small town needs.”

Peru is a small community, but benefits from having a college in town. That is helpful to The Market. “I would say when we were looking for communities that could utilize and support a store, it was always important that we find a small town, but also the town needed to have another draw,” Schmidt said. “In Louisville, it was two state parks right nearby. Here, it’s the college. This gives an extra layer of potential customers that could come in, but we also thought it was important for the students to have something.”

“Everyone has been grateful, supportive, and even surprised, that someone would come in and take the time to create a store like this,” Schmidt said. “People here love this community. Many people are from here and have deep roots here. It means a lot that someone would put their heart and soul into giving the town something they need and can use.”