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Local

Picnic planned, as Sterling Kmart gang sticks together

STERLING – Former employees of the now-closed Sterling Kmart had a farewell party in January, and now will gather for what promises to be a much more upbeat affair.

A reunion picnic is planned for Aug. 10 at Centennial Park, East 11th Street and Avenue D, in Rock Falls, said Shane Bielema, a 7-year employee of the store that announced its closing to workers on Oct. 13, 2013.

“We’re just reuniting and having some fun,” Bielema said. “It’s for anyone who worked at the Sterling Kmart and their families during the 41 years it was open.”

Festivities will begin at noon until the party breaks up. There will be a bags tournament, and lots of other games for kids and adults.

Everyone attending is asked to bring a dish to pass, their own place settings and drinks.

More than 100 people showed up in nasty winter weather for the farewell party in January at Dixon’s Comfort Inn & Suites.

Bielema created a Facebook page for the Sterling Kmart community to share memories, note special occasions such as birthdays and anniversaries, and even give each other a helping hand.

“This group is still close, and this page has allowed us to be there for each other during illnesses or any other situation where we can offer support,” Bielema said.

Sterling Kmart reunion

What: A reunion picnic for former Sterling Kmart workers and their families

When: Noon, Aug. 10

Where: Centennial Park, East 11th Street and Avenue D, Rock Falls

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