ST. CHARLES – Blue Goose Market has been experiencing a surge in customers after Blue Goose Market President and CEO Paul Lencioni last month sounded a warning that the store is fighting for its economic survival.
However, Lencioni said the fight is far from over.
"Sales are higher than they've been, for sure," he said. "We absolutely have a solid fighting chance. But this is just the beginning. The store is not saved. We're not yet stable."
The store, which first opened in 1928, celebrated its 90th anniversary last year. About 50 people attended a community discussion the store hosted on Aug. 1. Lencioni, who lives in St. Charles, said he continues to want to hear from the community about the store.
"I just want to make myself available to people," he said. "I believe very much the real secret to retail is you have to earn people's trust. Earning people's trust is a real thing. I have to show them that I care. I'm diligently working on everything that could be better."
A Facebook event called Save the Blue Goose Market will be held from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Aug. 10. Shoppers are urged to spend at least $20 at the store that day.
Lencioni is pleased Blue Goose Market's new wine bar is already helping to create more of a sense of community at the store.
"The amount of people that have gotten to know each other sitting at the bar is encouraging," he said. "It's been such a terrific addition, just for the ability to connect with people, have a laugh and have those shared experiences."