The North Bend Eagle

A customer leaves Liquid Courage. The former Shawsky’s is under new ownership.

Beverage store changes hands

by Nathan Arneal
Published 6/6/06

• New owner plans expanded offerings.

The liquor store on west Highway 30 in North Bend is under new ownership and plans to bring bigger and better offerings to North Bend.

Shawsky’s, owned by Pam and Matt Shaw since 2006, will now go by the name Liquid Courage under new owner Matt Kroeger.

Though the Shawsky’s signage will be up for a few more weeks, Kreoger took over the store late last month and has already added around 50 new product to the shelves. He said an advantage Liquid Courage has is that you can get exactly what you want without having to wait in line at a big box store.

“There’s no reason not to shop locally,” he said. “If I can get you in and out the door and have the same selection here as you do there, why wouldn’t you come here? I see a huge opportunity in the convenience side.”

One of the reasons he chose the name Liquid Courage is because it doesn’t have the word liquor in it. He wants the store to be know as more than a liquor store. He plans to expand the offerings of candy, snacks and non-alcoholic drinks. The longtime special of a 32-ounce fountain drink for $1 will remain.

“That’s not changing,” Kroeger said. “Everyone was concerned about the price of the dollar pop. It’s not going away.”

He’s already done some painting outside and rearranging inside the store, with more to come down the road.

Kroeger, his wife Stacy and two daughters age 3.5 and 18 months moved to the North Bend area almost two years ago.

“Obviously, the North Bend school system is extremely attractive and the community itself is a great place to raise kids,” Matt said. “We’ve been looking to get into North Bend for quite a few years. There’s just not a lot of housing options.”

Several years ago they had looked at a house north of town, and when it hit the market again, they didn’t pass on it a second time.

“We’re happy,” he said. “It’s our forever home. It’s where we want to be. It’s where we plan to stay and retire.”

Kreoger, 42, was born and raised in Schuyler. After attending high school and college in Missouri, he moved back to Schuyler in 2001 and was an assistant manager at Didier’s grocery store.

From there he climbed the ladder. running grocery stores in Colorado, Wyoming and Wisconsin. He eventually made his way back to his home state running stores in Omaha then Columbus.


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