I love mom and pop businesses. I miss the small grocery stores that I grew up with as a kid. I love the friendly faces when you walk in...the appreciation between customer and business owner. The hard-working owners who bend over backward to please their customers that they know by name.

There are mom and pop businesses still around that I love. In my hometown of Princeton; Shooters, formerly The Curve, which was owned by my aunt and uncle, is still one of my favorite places to go. A high school classmate of mine owns it...which makes it even more fun to frequent there.

Then there is the K Bob in downtown Princeton. I can't remember Princeton without it. 2 each day...but something about them screams tradition and They are only open until In St. Cloud, I was introduced to a local mom and pop called Dolcie's Lunch Box Grille. My co-worker and friend Dick Nelson has been trying to get me to go to lunch there for years. This year, we finally went..and went...and went! I can't get enough. The personal touch...the husband and wife team that work together behind the counter. The FOOD! The cupcakes! I'm telling you...I can't get enough of it. NO. They don't pay me to talk about them...I just love how they make you feel when you walk in.

I'm sure you have a favorite too.


Did you know that some of the biggest companies in the country started out as little mom & pops because the products were things that the owner wanted and couldn't they created it!  They started small, sharing their products with friends and family until they could get the financing to get started and work hard until their products attracted millions.  Nike was started with 2 $500 investments in 1971 by Phil Knight and Bill Bowerman. It was originally called "Blue Ribbon Sports" and began to make its own Nike Waffle Trainer with the soles of the shoe inspired by the waffle iron crosshatch pattern. That same year in 1971, they changed their name to Nike.  They paid a designer $35 for the ever so famous Nike Swoosh that we've all come familiar with. The designer Carolyn Davidson was also given a gift.  500 shares of Nike stock. Yeah...I think she's fine now.

Other businesses you've heard of that went big include:

  • Ben & Jerry's ice cream
  • Whole Foods
  • Yankee Candle
  • Dell Computers


I'm sure you've heard of Kickstarter by now. Kickstarter is a great way to fund creativity. Who knows? Maybe your mom and pop idea can turn into something much much bigger.

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