Open for business in Willisburg

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By Jesse Osbourne

Willisburg residents can now lay claim to convenience when it comes to some of their shopping needs.

The new Dollar General held the official grand opening on Saturday, much to the delight of nearby residents.
According to Willisburg mayor Pat Kirsch, shoppers lined up before 7 a.m. on Saturday to get in at 8 a.m.
People came from as far as Mackville and Harrodsburg to check out the new place.
The store, which Kirsch estimates has created as many as 10 jobs, was in early planning stages in January of this year.
Just 11 months later, the store is open and people are shopping.
“(Washington County Judge-Executive) Johnny Settles took me to talk to (magistrate and economic development director) Hal Goode,” she said. “We really have to say that Hal Goode is the father of this dollar store.”
Kirsch said the store didn’t pop up without any glitches, however.
“They had some problems, and they would call me and I would do everything I could,” she said. “If it was something I didn’t know what to do, I would call Johnny Settles or Hal Goode and they would get back with me, and they’d say it’s done. I have to give Johnny Settles credit, too, because I sure leaned on him a lot, too.”
Settles and Goode spoke at the grand opening on Saturday, as well as magistrate Benjamin Settles and Kirsch.
Kirsch said the people with Dollar General had been wanting to put a store in Willisburg for some time, but there wasn’t a feasible location.
“I knew of the two houses (that were demolished to make room for the store), so we talked to the people, and this is how it started,” she said.
One of the homeowners, Karen Sagrecy, now works at the store.
Kirsch estimated that well over 200 people were in attendance for the grand opening. Gift certificates were given away to the first 50 people in attendance, and the first 200 received a bag.
The store allows Willisburg and county residents, who would normally drive to Springfield, Harrodsburg, Bardstown, or Lebanon, a place to do shopping for basic needs.
“Everybody is pleased,” she said.
The store has even been customized to fit the needs of the community, Kirsch said.
Two hitching posts have been added to cater to the Amish community.
“I asked them to do that,” Kirsch said. “So they made two hitching posts for the Amish, because they’re part of our town.”
The mayor has been watching traffic come in and out of the Dollar General, something that brings a smile to her face.
“I can see the front door of the dollar store from my chair,” she said.