MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – A small community in western Wisconsin wants a new business to take its name off its building. It’s a firearms store named “F-Bomb Ordnance,” and it opened on the main street of St. Croix Falls. Its website, F-Bomb.net is prominently displayed on the windows.
St. Croix Falls is home to about 2,000 people. Small businesses are sprinkled throughout the main street in the City of Trails. This one has the community’s attention.
“Our business is F-Bomb Ordnance, which is a firearms business,” co-owner Dr. Geoff Gorres said.
Gorres said he started the business five years ago with his partners. They are all law enforcement or military veterans, and they recently relocated from nearby Amery.
“We’ve moved into a new building and that’s aroused the ire of some concerned citizens in town,” Gorres said.
“It really stands out in big block letters,” St. Croix Falls Mayor Brian Blesi said.
Blesi says about 50 people showed up at city hall last week to voice their opposition to the business and the signage.
“To me that phrase means only one thing, and I think that’s the majority sentiment here in the community,” Blesi said.
People WCCO spoke with who have concerns about the business call the name offensive and said they’d rather not have this type of business on the main street at all.
“We would just like to have our constitutional rights respected,” Gorres said. “We didn’t intend to cause a furor or offend anyone.”
But that’s what’s happened in this tight-knit town.
“The question is, ‘Can that be displayed prominently on our main street?’ and so that’s the question really in front of the city council,” Blesi said.
On Monday, the city council will decide if having the name on the business violates the city’s nuisance ordinance.
Blesi said F-Bomb Ordnance is permitted to be there. The council may decide to change the zoning to prevent similar businesses from going in along the main street.