North Iowa Lawn & Sport to become licensed Toro dealer in Charles City
By Kelly Terpstra, firstname.lastname@example.org
A new business is ready to open up shop in Charles City.
With winter fast approaching, it couldn’t come at a better time for many in the area who are preparing to take on Old Man Winter.
Need that snowmobile tuned up? How about getting the proper snowblower to clear the driveway?
North Iowa Lawn & Sport, owned and operated by Russell Boekemeier and Andy Wegner, hope they have what you need, and they should be able to fix what you have if it’s broken.
The doors will open on Monday to the business that will soon be a licensed Toro dealer. The co-owners – who each worked at Mason City Powersports for many years as service technicians – can immediately begin servicing all makes and models of snowmobiles, motorcycles, ATVs and UTVs.
“We’re both in our late 40s and we’ve been doing this since we were kids,” said Boekemeier. “We’re well diversified in everything.”
North Iowa Lawn & Sport will be located at 809 Wisconsin St., the former location of the Bread of Life Market and where Becker Home and Improvement used to be.
“It’s ideal. It’s got a good street front. It’s just going to be a great building,” said Wegner. “It’s got a fenced-in area and plenty of room for growth.”
Don’s Repair, a licensed Toro dealer in Charles City, recently closed with the retirement of owner Don Skretta.
Boekemeier and Wegner said they felt there was a need for their new business in town that could also tend to the needs of customers who needed to purchase a lawn mower, leaf blower or other lawn and garden accessories or equipment.
“We’re both capable mechanics looking for an opportunity to open a business. We saw the opportunity by Don’s Repair retiring and able to step into their shoes,” said Boekemeier. “We’re not buying anything from him. It’s nothing where we’re taking over. We are going to be selling Toro products – both lawn and garden and snow removal equipment.”
The new co-owners have hired Skretta’s office/sales manager, Linda Davis. Davis worked for Skretta for 20 years.
“She knows the lawn and garden side very well,” said Wegner.
Previous customers who were taken care of by Don’s Repair won’t have to worry about travelling long distances or going out of town to find a part for their mower, weed whacker or chainsaw.
“All the clientele from Don’s Repair will be taken over and acknowledged by North Iowa Lawn & Sport,” said Boekemeier. “We’re going to offer free pickup and delivery service.”
Boekemeier also said that some places that sell lawn and garden equipment might not be able to service it. North Iowa Lawn & Sport will.
“We’re going to be full-service on everything we sell and what anybody else sells. We have expertise in the small engine stuff, too,” he said.
Boekemeier and Wegner hope to hire many more employees once they become licensed and settled into their new location right down from the railroad tracks in Charles City.
“Do we plan on being more than just a 3-person team? Absolutely,” said Boekemeier.
“Hopefully in time, we add other franchises. That would be the ultimate goal,” said Wegner.
The store’s hours of business are Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. until 5 p.m, and Saturday from 9 a.m. until noon. They will be closed on Sundays.