‘If we don’t have it, you don’t need it’
Sitting on Highway 27, located 12 miles from Sparta and 16 miles from Black River Falls is the Cataract Mart, which has been owned and operated by Steve Boris, his wife Linda and their family for the past 20 years.
The Cataract Mart has been a staple in the Cataract community for even longer, with it seeing several owners prior to the Boris family.
Boris, who was born and raised in Cataract, had several successful businesses in the area and had always wanted to buy the mart in his hometown. After Boris purchased the business in October of 1999, he implemented a lot of changes, including bringing back the fuel pumps and expanded its product offerings.
There isn’t much the Cataract Mart doesn’t have. It supplies customers with liquor, hardware, automotive supplies, gas, groceries and so much more. It has a deli counter, a bait shop and a post office.
“We’re a general store, like Sam Drucker. Very old school,” Boris said. “Our motto is if we don’t have it, you don’t need it.”
Boris says he has quite a few people come in that are just passing through, but that he knows at least 50 to 60 percent of the faces that walk through the door. He feels interacting with people is the best part of his job.
“We have great employees and great customers,” Boris said. “I’d really like to thank our customers for all the years of support. I’m grateful because I wouldn’t have a business without them.”
As part of its 20th anniversary, the mart is having a Customer Appreciation Week, which began on Oct. 14 and will continue until Oct. 20, with special in store deals all week long.
Boris and his staff kicked off the week with deals on cookies, liquor and fuel. On Thursday (today) Boris will be offering free coffee and cupcakes from Steph’s Cakes and Bakes.
On Friday, customers can take home a free movie rental with a $20 purchase. On Saturday, the mart will be selling brats and hotdogs with the proceeds going to the ATV trail signs.
The specials continue into Sunday with great deals on eggs, porky links and bacon. Customers can register to win a Weber Spirit gas grill and many other prizes as well.
Boris, who is approaching 65-years-old, is hoping to retire soon and allow his children to step in and take over the daily operations. Until then, he’ll continue to spend his mornings greeting each customer with a friendly smile and engaging in light-hearted discussions each and every time the bells jingle on his door.