RED WING -- When Craig and Kwin Novacek found out that the local Slumberland store was for sale, they were immediately interested. They followed up and took ownership of the store from Deb and Clay Diggins on Jan. 7.
“This market was specifically appealing for many reasons,” Craig said. “One was that the previous owners had done a nice job in the community. The reputation is strong, and the people within the store are phenomenal. They have been representing us well for some time now. Having known and trusted the previous owners made it quite easy.”
Craig has worked for Slumberland for 14 years. He has worked as a salesman and trainer in stores, and in the home office in the Twin Cities. He said that background made him ready to take on a store of his own.
“I learned a lot about how to treat customers, what keeps people coming back, and the proper way to deliver an outstanding experience from front to back,” Craig said. “One of the things that we are focused on is we want the community of Red Wing to be better because Slumberland is here. Part of it is giving back. Part of it is being active in the community. Part of it is filling a need for there to be a nice furniture retailer in Red Wing. We feel that being active and involved is very important.”
When Craig was working in the Slumberland home office, the family lived in Stillwater. They moved to Red Wing on Dec. 22 and immediately got their 6-year-old triplets involved in sports programs at the YMCA, according to Craig who earned a bachelor’s degree in communications from Buena Vista University in Storm Lake, Iowa, where he played quarterback for the football team.
Slumberland has both franchise and corporate stores. The Red Wing store is a franchise store, which is important to the Novaceks because that means it is locally owned and operated, allowing them to become more a part of the community.
Craig said one of the defining reasons they bought the local store “is that Red Wing is a strong economic community. There are good jobs here. Manufacturing is really strong. It’s its own community. If you get closer to the Cities, those people don’t have that strong sense of community. I think that is highlighted by the strong representation of the Chamber of Commerce. They are really super active. Plus it is a beautiful place. It’s gorgeous here.”
The Novaceks intend to promote a Slumberland program called 40 Winks. The company partners with nonprofits in the area to identify families who might not be able to afford mattresses and then donates mattresses to those families.
The Novaceks also plan to update their furniture offerings continually to reflect customers’ interests and the best companies in the business.
“We want to deliver an exceptional experience from the time that the customer first sees our ad until the time they get our furniture,” Craig said. “We would love for anybody out there to stop in. I would love to shake their hand, look them in the eye, and talk to them.”