It's an unhappy holiday season at one of Crookston's three vehicle dealerships, as staff at Crookston Motors were notified Friday morning that the south-end business fixture will be closing its doors on Dec. 31.
General Manager Al Barry said he was notified of the decision Thursday afternoon by Rydell Auto, Crookston Motors owner, and he told the 11 affected employees shortly after 8 a.m. Friday.
All impacted employees of the GMC/Buick dealership have been offered jobs at Rydell in Grand Forks, Barry said. "No questions asked, everyone will have a job if they want one and no one will miss a paycheck," he said. "But I understand there's a commute involved and it might not be the best situation for everyone. We want to give everyone as much time as possible to process this and make a decision that's best for them and their families."
In recent years, Crookston Motors' inventory has taken a hit with the ending of, first, the Oldmobile vehicle brand and, second, Pontiac.
"It was a business decision; the store has struggled since we lost Pontiac," Barry told the Times.
Some family members of Crookston Motors staff have launched a "Saving Crookston Motors" Facebook page. Barry said he's aware of the page, and added that customers have been posting comments on Crookston Motors' own Facebook page as well.
"It's certainly wonderful to see that, to see that people care that much," Barry said. "I personally would love to think that it would make a difference and I hope it does."