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Skogen's Festival Foods began operations in Mauston Nov. 2.

Skogen’s Festival Foods opened its newest store at 750 North Union Street in Mauston Nov. 2.

The store was previously owned and operated by the Donald Burnstad family for five generations in a separate franchise.

Skogen’s announced plans to purchase the Festival Foods in Mauston in October.

“We’re looking forward to serving the residents of Mauston and the surrounding area, and we’re humbled by the positive response we’ve received so far,” said Skogen’s Festival Foods President and CEO Mark Skogen.

Skogen’s Festival Foods was founded in 1946. The company began operating as Festival Foods in 1990 and currently employs over 7,500 full and part-time associates at 31 supermarkets across Wisconsin.

“The Burnstad family has done an excellent job managing this store for many years,” Skogen said. “We are honored to have this opportunity to continue the tradition they started in the Mauston community.”

The Burnstad family began its grocer business in 1944 in Tomah, and expanded to Mauston in 1965.

The Skogen family opened its first store in Onalaska in 1946.

“We have deep roots in the community of Mauston, and we want to thank everyone who has supported our family and our business for so many years,” said Mauston Festival Foods Co-Owner Cindy Bolton. “We are pleased to be able to transition the store to another family who puts customers and communities first.”

The Mauston Festival Foods was one of two in the state of Wisconsin not owned by Skogen’s.

“There will be an over $1 million investment in the store,” Skogen said.

The main offices for Skogen’s Festival Foods are in Onalaska and De Pere. Store locations include Onalaska, Eau Claire, Green Bay, Appleton, Sheboygan, Madison, Manitowoc, Mount Pleasant and Fond du Lac.

“We’ll expand our natural organic department, we’ll expand our deli department,” Skogen said. “And also expanding prepared meals and dinners — that’s really been growing for us.”

Community involvement is important to the business, Skogen said.

“We’re very involved with the fireworks for Fourth of July,” Skogen said. “That’s one of our bigger things.” He also mentioned organizations such as Lions Clubs, Rotary Clubs, Boys and Girls Clubs can submit requests online for donations.

The new store will require additional staff. “We’ve been hiring quite a bit already,” Skogen said. He estimates about 40 people have been hired.

Interested applicants may submit their resumes at www.Festfoods.com

You can reach Jake Ekdahl on Twitter @JakeaEkdahl or contact him at 608-697-6353