Aaron and Tracy Peterson along with their children, Grace and Hunter, live just a couple miles from the former Cloverdale Store. “We drove by often and when we saw it was for sale off and on over the years we wondered what we could do with it,” said Tracy. “We knew there was so much history in this building and we just knew we had to do something for the Cloverdale community.”  They brainstormed ideas for what they could do there and finally landed on the idea of a vintage candy store and ice cream shop.  “We wanted something that brought joy and excitement to people, as well as to the community,” said Tracy “We wanted to be a place where memories were made.” From this idea the Cloverdale Country Store, featuring Bear Creek Candy Company was born.

When walking into the store, one can’t help but notice the restored ceilings, walls and floors. They are original to the building that was built in 1921 by the proprietor, Walhfred Abrahamson.  This building is celebrating 100 years this year. “We have enjoyed hearing so many stories of this building including children coming down to the store from the Cloverdale School House to use the phone as it was the only phone in the area to children getting dropped off from the bus route and they would run in and get a treat and then wait outside at the picnic tables to be picked up,” said Tracy.  “The memories of this store in the community are endless.” The Petersons started their renovations in October of 2020 and were able to open on August 19, 2021.  

Along with the candy and ice cream, they reached out to local vendors to see if there was any interest in showcasing their items at the store.  The response was amazing, the store now features gift items from 23 different vendors including candles from the Cloverdale Candle Company; handmade soaps, bath and shower bombs from The Cottage in Hinckley; local beef from Croix River Beef, local honey and local syrup, hand woven baskets, self defense keychains, as well as various other craft items.  “We are a community, working together to share our talents and gifts with others,” said Tracy.   

The candy selection is phenomenal, from homemade fudge and turtles to salt water taffy to vintage old time candy and so much more. The Peterson’s plan to continue adding additional items as fast as they can get them in. “Shipping has been a problem,” said Tracy. When they do get a shipment in, sometimes it’s only a partial shipment or it takes a few weeks to get to them. “Even the ice cream flavors have been very limited and some flavors are very hard to get in,” she explained. “We are working hard and listening to our customers and trying to get in the flavors they are looking for, but it’s not always easy.” 

Cloverdale Country Store carries Cedar Crest Ice Cream and offers 12 different flavors as well as Root Beer Floats. They offer a small sitting area for patrons to enjoy conversation while they enjoy their treats.

Cloverdale Country Store will be offering pre-made gift baskets for the holiday season as well as hosting a Christmas event with Santa on December 11 from 2 - 5 p.m. Follow their Facebook page at www.facebook.com/bearcreekcandy for updates and details on the event.  The store is currently open Thursday-Saturday from 11 a.m. - 7 p.m. and Sundays from 12 p.m. – 6 p.m. These current hours will be in effect through November.  Updates to hours after November can be found on their Facebook page. 

The Peterson’s expressed their gratitude and gratefulness shown by the community since they opened in August.  “We can’t ever thank everyone enough for the outpouring of support shown to us in such a short amount of time of just opening,” said Tracy.  “We are ALL going to be a part of something great for this community and we couldn’t do it without the support of our customers.”  

The Peterson’s are gathering photos and history of the store from years past to put together a history wall.  If anyone has photos they are willing to share to add to their collection, please reach out to them at the store or contact Tracy at 612-636-2624. 

Be sure to take the trip out there and share in the history of the building while supporting a local small business.

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