Red Lake Nation Opens Brand New Shopping Complex
Red Lake Nation is growing, and one thing any community needs is a full grocery store. Now, the Red Lake Trading Post is officially open, and it has a lot more to offer than just produce.
“It finally has happened. It’s been 2 or 3 years but actually it’s been talked about for many years about having a new retail center, and it’s finally become a reality,” says Red Lake Tribal Chairman Darrell Seki, Sr.
The Red Lake Trading Post is three times the size of the previous grocery store. The complex includes a laundromat, a gas station, and a convenience store that has extended hours for customers – plus other amenities.
“Our new bakery will be actually baking breads and stuff rather than just having a commercial premade bakery and sweets, so we’ll actually have choices like sourdough, wild rice bread, rye bread and stuff, we’ll actually slicing it, making it fresh daily, so that will be a big plus,” says Allen Retz, the general manager for the complex.
The shelves will be filled with all the regular brand name items that you can find in stores like Walmart and Target, but there will also be unique healthy food options, not to mention different cultural food choices.
“Our expanded health care section, we can provide more health aides; a greater selection of foods; a greater diversity of foods as far as having Asian and Hispanic foods, items like that. Hopefully we can do some more promos with our own items like our own wild rice and our own fish from the fisheries,” says Retz.
The shopping complex is expected to bring at least 25 to 30 new jobs to the reservation, with more potential job opportunities down the line. There will be a Subway opening at the complex after Labor Day, and managers are also looking at possibly providing a grocery delivery service in the winter.
“I was thinking the other day, I was in Walmart. All of us have had our issues when we shopped at Walmart. It’s time that we keep the money here on the reservation. Not only because we’re treated badly but because these dollars that we’re going to spend in this store create jobs for our people. It also creates better access to food,” says Sam Strong, the tribal secretary for Red Lake Nation.
The complex will officially open to the public this Saturday and they are still accepting applications for various jobs. Those interested can apply inside the store.
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