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Oak Creek businesses shift

Town approves convenience store, gym/coffee shop

— The face of business in Oak Creek is changing with the season as several new businesses have changed hands or prepare to open their doors.

At 222 Main St., Ernie Rupp and Scott Latuseck bought the lot with Lupita's Cantina and the greenhouse for $88,000 on Nov. 10.

Rupp, owner and executive with Lodging of the Black Hills, based in Deadwood, S.D., said they are planning a complete renovation of the log cabin on the property.

He wrote in an e-mail that they will begin work in December or January to repair the outside and then install a new kitchen, baths, bedrooms and fixtures.

He said the goal is "to make the home into a top-end vacation home that we can use for ourselves and our families as well as rent out to bring vacationers to Oak Creek."

The website for his company, http://www.executive-lodging.com, lists dozens of other cabins and houses the company rents.

Rupp wrote that the owner of the greenhouse on the property has closed the business and moved out of state. As for Lupita's, he said the burrito stand is welcome to stay, though he has not yet talked to business owner Lawrence Jaconetta.

Jaconetta said the cantina typically is closed during winter, but if he can buy the structure, he'd be happy to stay.

Just up the street, Mountain Market and Munchies got the go-ahead from the Oak Creek Planning Commission and Oak Creek Town Board. The convenience store, owned by P.K. Baldwin, will take the place of the old Black Mountain Tavern. It formerly was located at the Sinclair gas station.

"They moved everything in, then they went to planning Wednesday night and got a formal recommendation for approval, then the (Town) Board gave them formal approval," Town Clerk Karen Halterman said.

The Town Board also ap­­­­proved a second request for land-use change of minor impact for Java Gym, a new business owned by Danielle Friedman that is to go into the Dovetail Design building in the 100 block of West Main Street.

Halterman said that Fried­man said she did not want to compete with The Mugshot coffee shop down the street and envisions the business as more health-oriented, with a juice bar in front and a Pilates/exercise/yoga studio in the back of the building.

Halterman said Friedman hopes to have the business open by mid-December but is not sure whether that will be practical.

The Town Board approved both land-use changes unanimously.