Recently there have been some restaurants and other businesses that have closed around the St. Cloud area.  It's really a sad situation to see businesses close.  But, as you see this happening, some of them are not that surprising.  Some of these places seem to have had little to no business - like no cars in the parking lot, seemingly no one in the restaurant or retail business.  Even though you hate to see a business close, some of them seem like it was expected.

Pepper Jax on Division was one of those restaurants.  I rarely saw anyone there.  When they announced that they were closing their doors, I wasn't surprised.  The same situation with Bed Bath and Beyond.  When that store opened, I was excited about it.  Lots of things for the home, some of those "as seen on TV" finds.  But over the years it seemed like less and less people were heading into that store.

Is the problem online shopping?  Maybe.  But what business would you like to see come to St. Cloud that you think would be popular?

I was talking with several people over the weekend and some of the comments were regarding a Trader Joe's store.  They have some unique things and food items there that you can't necessarily get from other grocery stores.  I've lived in other cities that had a Trader Joe's and they have always done well.

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Another suggestion was a Whole Foods.  Now with Amazon buying that business, you'd think they would be expanding to more areas.  But the price point can be kind of high... according to people who have shopped there.  Or, that is just the perception? Possibly.

I have also heard people suggesting a Cracker Barrel restaurant.  While some people will say that we have too many chain restaurants here, it also seems that those are the restaurants that people frequent the most.  There are a few bistro type restaurants around town, and they are very good.  But MOST of them are downtown St. Cloud which is where some people refuse to go.  Cracker Barrel is cool because they do have great breakfast options, but the general store that is attached has great shopping for retro items and unique gift ideas.

What are some other retail spaces that are needed in the St. Cloud area if you aren't wanting to shop online for everything?  There is something to be said for going out, shopping around, and getting the thing you'd like right then and there instead of waiting for shipping.  And let's be honest, Prime isn't what it used to be.  You are no longer guaranteed the two day delivery anymore.

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