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Amazing Grains closing its doors for good Saturday

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GRAND FORKS, ND (WDAZ-TV) – It’s the end of an era as a cornerstone of downtown Grand Forks is shutting its doors.

Amazing Grains dates as far back as 1972. It was after the flood of '97 that they moved to their current location.

The building itself is on the national register of historic places. There's so much history here, which is another reason why people hate to see it go.

For manager Betsy Perkins, Amazing Grains is so much more than a store.

Perkins: "It's not so much the merchandise I'll miss. I can get that other places, but it's the community."

After 30 years with the co-op, she'll soon shut their sign off for good.

Perkins: "Watching the kids grow up. I've seen kids that started coming when they were babies and now they're having kids of their own."

Customer Kasandra Gregor is one of those people.

Gregor: "I'm trying not to cry. Here but it's kind of emotional. Because it's been around since I was a baby. And like it said it feels like family."

Natural Grocers moved into town last year. While the manager at Amazing Grains says this is a strong competitor, she said they lost the bulk of their business to this.

Perkins: "Online shopping, which I didn't think it was going to hit the grocery business, but apparently it has."

Perkins: "Sales were dropping slowly for a year or so, and then Natural Grocers opened and sales dropped over 30%, and it's hard for any business to recover from that."

Starting Tuesday everything in the store will be 20% off, and each day until Saturday, discounts will increase by another 10%. On Saturday the store will close its doors for good.

Amazing Grains reported upwards of $20,000 in employee theft. A manager says the thefts added to money problems for the business. An investigation is ongoing.