Mills adds store

Published 9:04 am Thursday, August 26, 2004

By By MARCIA STEFFENS / Cassopolis Vigilant
CASSOPOLIS - Starting as a "bag boy" in the mill, Joe Tone, has seen many changes in the past 11 years. Now, as general manager of Community Mills, he is looking forward to a new bigger store and new offices.
The construction of a new 7,800 square foot building nearing the road will introduce the feed and tack store to a public some of whom weren't familiar with the variety of products sold by the company.
Showing pictures of a building engulfed in flames, Tone said the Mill burned in 1952 and was rebuilt in 1954.
With its tremendous support of the Cass County 4-H Fair and programs in the past years, many exhibitors knew they could get the feed for their animals there, but now others will know they are able to purchase large quantities of dog and cat food.
Community Mills was recognized as one of the oldest supporters of the 4-H auction of the large animals. They have also donated money for building projects.
They offer the chemicals and fertilizer farmers use also, with a full line of hunting clothes in natural camouflage, leads, horse tack and can even throw in a saddle.
The extra space will allow for the addition of Red Wings and Carrharts.
Presently they have 18 employees and plan to add four or five part-time workers for the store, which he hopes will open by Nov. 1.
Tone, who had his start at Michigan Livestock in Sturgis, lives in Marcellus. So do the owners, Scott, Ray and Dean McKenzie, who have had the Mill since 1975.
Tone and his wife Rachael have two children, Gabriel, 4, and Lillian, 2.