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Big Don’s in Lester Prairie does the job right

Whether it’s fixing your car, filling your tank, or flavoring your ice cream, Big Don’s Carthedral in Lester Prairie knows how to please.

Since 2000, Don and Kari Artmann have operated the shop at 601 Central Ave., providing full service auto mechanics/auto body repair, gas, groceries, deli, and more.

“I really like my job. Donny and Kari are really good employers,” said assistant manager Barb Trittabaugh, who has been with the company since 2001.

In addition to Trittabaugh, Big Don’s employs Molly Piehl, Zack Roth, Angie Jakobitz, Kari Rathkamp, Trish Hoen, and mechanic Todd Ruschmeyer.

The Artmann children, Josh and Jessie, also used to help out when they were younger.

Don has many years of experience in the automotive repair industry, operating Big Don’s out of his rural Lester Prairie home before moving the shop to town and remodeling the building.

“They’ve done a lot of work to get it where it is today,” Trittabaugh said.

All the effort has paid off, and people arrive from miles around for engine replacements, tune-ups, transmission work, painting, and more at Big Don’s.

“We have a big customer base,” Trittabaugh said. “We have people from the cities drive out here.”

While they’re getting their vehicle fixed, customers often stop in the convenience store for lunch and a cup of hot coffee. For dessert, Big Don’s offers flavor-burst ice cream in a cone, cup, or shake. With selections like cotton candy, tropical orange, and green apple – and mix-ins such as cookie dough and brownies – the combinations are seemingly endless.

“You can get one flavor, or you can get all of them,” Trittabaugh said.

Red and blue slushies, flavored meat sticks, and other snacks are also popular at Big Don’s.

Trittabaugh has gotten to know the purchasing preferences of many of her customers.

“I sometimes have it ready for them if I see them coming in,” she said.

Big Don’s is open Mondays though Fridays from 5:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Saturdays from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.; and Sundays from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. To learn more, call (320) 395-2214.

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