White Bear Jewelers: New store owner maintains family ties
21 Oct 2020
When the Andersons decided to sell White Bear Jewelers, the first person they called was Ken’s cousin Jeff Johnson. The two had talked back in February, pre-COVID, at Jeff’s sister’s wedding. Tired of parking problems in downtown Stillwater and unshoveled snow next to empty storefronts, Jeff mentioned he wanted to relocate. The timing was perfect.
Ken and Kathy Anderson always planned to retire to their cabin near Grand Rapids, just not quite yet. COVID-19 hastened their timeline. They told Johnson that the store was for sale and put their Bald Eagle Lake home on the market. That was around Easter.
The transition to a new owner has taken longer than both families anticipated, but White Bear Jewelers is now open. Johnson’s specialty is goldsmithing. Yes, he can repair watches, but that side of the jewelry business is no longer economically viable, he said.