Rural King Opens in Hartland at the Site of the Old WalMart

The second store in Michigan is the 99th in the Illinois-based chain.


Stepping into a Rural King store, initially, is an assault on your senses. The smell of popcorn popping draws you to the machine just behind the cashiers. Free popcorn and coffee are in constant supply to shoppers as they stroll the aisles. The tall ceilings lure your eyes upward and down the well-marked walkways where products are displayed. The warehouse look of the store seems to echo noise around into a constant buzz. The feel of work jeans and other clothing items invite your hands to browse shelving racks and hanging displays. This is a store that invites you to peruse and sightsee as much as shop.

The first Rural King opened in Mattoon, Illinois in 1960. Eleven states, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Tennessee, Ohio, Michigan, Missouri, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, and Florida pay home to just under 100 stores. The chain continues to grow with the 99th store opening in Hartland, Mi. Each Rural King location features products selected specifically for local interests. Store Manager Mike Butler said the number of horse farms in our area was a deciding factor in certain inventory choices. Fenton residents can take a short trip down Highway 23 to the M-59 exit. The new Rural King occupies the old Wal-Mart store on the southeast corner of the intersection.

From outdoor recreational items, such as camping equipment, kayaks, hunting and fishing supplies to farming equipment, livestock feed, down to baby chickens and ducks; Rural King offers a wide range of products. Lawn mowers, fashion clothing, workwear, housewares, toys, cooking grills, tools, and even snacks are but a few of the additional items to be found in the store.

Grand Opening Set

Store Manager Mike Butler reported the store opened on Monday the 13th of March. However, the store sold a limited inventory of generators and related equipment to help residents that suffered power outages during the wind storm the previous week. The official Grand Opening takes place March 23rd through the 26th. After cutting the ribbon on Thursday several vendors will be on hand to promote their products and offer giveaways to visiting shoppers. Mike says: “The store is giving away Rural King hats to the first 1,000 customers. They will also be holding drawings throughout the weekend with prizes up to $500.”

Visiting the store before the big opening event will allow for a more leisurely tour of the facility. But, the excitement and chances at winning prizes during the Grand Opening are sure to draw large crowds. Mike stressed the importance of community involvement, that being a good neighbor is a Rural King principal. Mike says he will stress this principal with store employees. The Hartland Farmer’s Market is moving to the store’s parking lot this spring, that seems to be a positive start. It’s great to welcome another contributing member of the extended Fenton region. Stop in, grab some popcorn, see the baby chicks, and explore the assortment of products Rural King has to offer. See why folks are excited about this new addition to our community.