It's the end of an era for upper-midwest retail shoppers.  Shopko - the Wisconsin-based department store that's been around since 1962 - is closing all of its remaining retail locations.  The move shutters the stores in our region - including those in Ely, Moose Lake, Two Harbors, and Duluth.

Back in January, Shopko annouced the closure of 105 stores.  This new announcement will close the remaining 130 locations.  The move is expected to be complete in 10 to 12 weeks according to news sources - sometime in the early summer.

Shopko has it's beginnings when original owner James Rubin - a pharmacist - moved to the Green Bay area.  Looking to expand his business, he looked for ways to develop more product line.  Over the years the retail store grew - building in small to mid-sized markets - primarily in the upper midwest region.  In 1999, Shopko bought out Pamida - a similar variety store.  Following a rebranding, the company continued to do business under the Shopko name.