Building of the Year
“Nominees in this category will be the physical building that house successful businesses. The criteria in this category will be new construction as well as buildings which have undergone remodeling or refurbishment in 2014 to the extent that the building becomes an attribute to the community.”
Watershed Café – Steve & Rita Rasmuson, Owners
Culver’s loss; our gain
The Chamber would like to recognize Watershed Café as Building of the Year for 2014.
Steve and Rita Rasmuson lived a few miles out of Osceola for 13 years. For 13 years, Rita had day-dreamed about the building at the corner of 243 and 35. She was ecstatic when the building came up for sale and the time was right for the Rasmusons to purchase it and remodel it into WaterShed Café. Needless to say, it took time, energy and money to see their dream completed. The core of the building was built in the 1880’s and is still solid today, anchored in the bedrock below.
Construction began in April of this year and the new restaurant was open four months later. List of work completed includes new kitchen, new bathroom new deck, new hood and heating systems, new roof, façade work, new doors, new windows, handicapped ramp, new furniture, new fireplace, walk-in cooler, new counters, all new kitchen equipment and refinished floors. “Never again!” says Rita.
Steve grew up in Manitowoc, WI and Rita near Chicago. They met in Milwaukee while they were both at a cooking school there. Rita need to hire a cook and Steve applied for the job. “That’s when Steve and Rita were a done deal,” says Rita. Later, Rita worked as a horticulturist in Spring Green, WI and Steve worked for Culver Franchising. They eventually owned and managed two Culver’s locations, one in Cottage Grove, MN and the other in Stillwater, MN.
They moved their family to the Osceola area when working at Stillwater. Rita’s mother moved in with them from Chicago and they were looking for a good school for their two children. Osceola seemed like a good fit.
Rita sees a huge value with her chamber membership. From experience, she can see how active chambers can change towns. It brings everyone together.
Most of the building renovation has been completed but Steve and Rita still have a couple of ideas for the building and business. They are now open Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays for dinner. They will continue to evaluate what type of food and hours their clients want. They look forward to many years on Main Street. Welcome and we are glad you’re here!