There’s something other than Voyageur Beer brewing in Grand Marais and that is the debate about a Dollar General Store coming to Grand Marais. There’s a petition to prevent the store from coming with over 1000 signatures and a petition to support the store with over 100(one signature is Donald Trump of Grand Marais and at least two people have signed it twice).
At a recent town meeting many voices of opposition were heard. You can see the video and read the article online. People are against it because it might “cheapen” the look of the town especially since it would be located before coming down the hill into town. It would definitely make Grand Marais look like many other small towns in America but is that a bad thing?
Some of the neatest places I have visited have unique looking towns. Have you been to Helen, Georgia? It looks just like an Alpine Village and all of the buildings have to have the same look.
Or how about Sedona, AZ where strict building codes require all buildings to blend in with the topography surrounding them and can only be of a certain height?
Does Grand Marais, Minnesota have such an ordinance? I don’t know. Should there be one for the very quaint and beautiful downtown area? Probably. We live in a picturesque area and tourists love to visit the shops in Grand Marais.
Do the residents of Grand Marais and Cook County need a more affordable place to shop? Of course. If you’ve ever had to buy a notebook or something like a kitchen utensil in town you might find yourself grimacing.
I’m not saying I’m in favor of a Dollar General or a string of other chains coming to Grand Marais. But if you build it, they will shop, for better or worse.