Winter storm warning leads to increased sales at hardware stores and supermarkets in the region

Some hardware stores and supermarkets in the region are reporting an uptick in business, as their customers get ready for a potential oncoming winter storm, and just getting ready for the season in general.

According to the National Weather Service in Grand Forks, there is a winter storm warning threatening central and eastern North Dakota in a long-duration event ranging from Thursday to Saturday.

Leevers Supermarket in Devils Lake, N.D., saw an increase in customers stocking up staple items on the morning of Wednesday, Oct. 9.

Jennifer Sellers, an assistant manager at Walmart in Devils Lake, said much of the same, with more customers shopping for “necessities” in preparation for the winter weather.


“We have seen a good bit of people come in so far, shopping for consumables, and everything,” said Sellers.

Both stores intend to keep to their regularly scheduled hours.

Tom Rost, at Newby’s Ace Hardware in Devils Lake, said he sold out of RV antifreeze very quickly as people came in a prepare to winterize for the season. He also said he is selling some shovels and ice-melt, as well. He intends to remain open if the weather takes a turn for the worse.

“I would take care of my customers, whatever they need,” said Rost.

Much was the same at Mac’s Inc., also in Devils Lake, with shovels, sand tubes, roof rakes and salt being the big sellers.

In Grand Forks, Joe Anderson, at Menards at 2550 32nd Ave., S., said business was pretty much normal for the season, just running a bit earlier than usual.

“We’ve had people come in looking for shovels and snowblowers … and some ice-melt,” said Anderson. “But I wouldn’t say it’s extra people going out of their way to get this stuff; I mean they’re getting the stuff that they’re already coming in for.”


Local Hardware Hank, at 1017 Central Ave., N.W., in East Grand Forks, reported increased business.

“Lots of shovels, a couple of snowblowers, still lots of dehumidifiers from all the rain,” said Brandon Buckalew, owner of the store. “And lots of pumps, from all that (rain).”

Sales of shovels were up to the point that an additional order was necessary.

“We ordered a special truck of shovels that just got here an hour ago,” said Buckalew.

Adam Kurtz is the community editor for the Grand Forks Herald. He covers higher education and other topics in Grand Forks County and the city.

Kurtz joined the Herald in July 2019. He covered business and county government topics before covering higher education and some military topics.

Tips and story ideas are welcome. Get in touch with him at, or DM at @ByAdamKurtz.

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