LA CROSSE, Wis. (WKBT) -

The Chippewa Falls-based Gordy’s Country Market announced Friday it has purchased the Our Town Fresh Markets in Arcadia, Galesville, and La Crosse from the Hegenbarth Food group.

Gordy’s will begin operating the stores on October 20 and plans to keep all of the current employees.

“We are filled with a mix of emotions today” Dave Hegenbarth, owner of Our Town Fresh Markets said in a statement. “We are pleased to be selling to the Schafer’s and Gordy’s County Market because they are family owned and they take care of their employees, customers, and communities; standards that we value and take pride in. We know Gordy’s will bring a renewed energy and passion to these stores that will benefit everyone.”    

"We are thrilled about this exciting opportunity to expand into these new locations and the surrounding communities." Jeff Schafer, president of Gordy's County Market said in a statement. “We look forward to meeting new customers and showing them who we are, serving them well, and offering them quality products at a price they’ll love.”

The Eau Claire-area based grocery store is moving into a market that's currently dominated by Festival Foods.

"They're a great company and they do a fantastic job. We feel that we're going to be able to be competitive, and that's really what's beneficial to the customer, because if it's a little bit more competitive, they're going to get a great product at a better price,” said Gordy’s Guru Matt Selvig.

Gordy Schafer opened his first grocery store in Chippewa Falls in 1966. Gordy’s, which has been a family-owned and operated business, currently owns 13 Gordy’s grocery stores and eight Gordy’s Express gas stations. The company employs more than 1,300 people in west central Wisconsin.