SLAYTON - The Hut is celebrating 50 years of business in the Slayton community this week.
Owner Sue Isder said her parents, Trace and Pep Hafner, along with her sister, Terri, opened the store in 1969, when Isder was a teenager.
Before that, the Hafners owned Slayton Drug, as Isder’s father was a pharmacist. The post office next door had just moved to a new location, and the Hafners jumped at the opportunity to expand with a gift shop.
“I’ve worked here my whole life,” Isder said. So has her daughter, Emily Rosenbrook, and now her grandchildren are growing up in the store, too.
At first, The Hut offered items like Hallmark cards, photo albums, party goods and scented candles, Isder said.
Today, the merchandise looks totally different, ranging from clothing to decor to kitchen supplies, as well as offering a wedding registry, which is popular among Slayton brides every year.
“The kitchen stuff is my thing,” Isder said. “Gadgets are fun.”
Rosenbrook, who has been running the business with her mother since 2002, handles the decor.
“I couldn’t do it without her,” Isder said of her daughter’s help.
After the business purchased a third building next to the previous two in 1989, extra hands became especially valuable, Isder explained.
“We draw from quite a ways away, which is kind of fun,” Isder added. The store’s main customer range comes from within a radius of 30 miles, but Isder said she has had customers from Marshall and Sioux Falls, S.D. as well.
The people are her favorite part of the job.
“Some have been here a long time and have come in forever,” Isder said. The customers are the reason the store has enjoyed such longevity.
To celebrate 50 years of business, The Hut hosted a party at Silverberg’s from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, including a meal, drinks and entertainment.