By Ron VandenBoom
Rumors that a Menards hardware outlet might be one of the new stores destained to find a new home at the Havre Holiday Village Shopping Center appear to be false.
Thats the word given the Havre Daily News by Menards company spokesman, Pat Flynn, who as director of sales and leasing for the Wisconsin based company, would be involved in acquiring the location for a store.
Flynn said there had been no discussion what-so-ever concerning a possible move to Havre.
I dont know that weve even looked at Montana yet, he said from his office Monday.
Andy Belew, spokesman for the Florida Based Ocwen company that owns the Havre shopping complex, said he was unaware of any negotiations on the part of Menards to move into the village claiming he had never heard of Manards.
Whats a Menards, Belew asked when first questioned about contact between the two operations.
Despite Belews denies that any contact had been made, or that negotiations are in progress, he did say, we would welcome them with open arms if they wanted to come.
Belew will also be attending this years International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) Convention in Las Vegas May 21-24, where he said about 22,000 people involved in the shopping center industry will be gathered.
He said he hopes that he will be able to make some contacts with prospective occupants for the village at that time.
A visit to the Havre complex is also on Belews agenda sometime during the week of May 10. Belews visit to Havre in February, and his address to the City Council, created a fire storm of controversy when he suggested some downtown merchants should consider moving to the Holiday Village.
Belew said Monday he did not expect his comments to create such controversy, but added that some good did come out of all of that.
Belew also confirmed that work would begin on up-grading the shopping center at the end of May or the First part of June.
The first thing we have to do is the roof, Belew said. Theres been nothing done with the roof since it opened.
Next on the list of repairs will be painting the outside of the building with up-grades to the parking lot being last on the list.
John Caven, court appointed receiver for the Holiday Village Mall, said Monday he has heard nothing of any negotiations between Ocwen and Menards. Nor has he heard anything from Menards directly, he said.
Dont you think they would contact us, he said when asked if there was any truth to the rumor?