Until a month ago, Fitzpak store at the corner of SH 105 and SH 146 in Moss Hill, was a busy place, with customers purchasing fuel and diesel, picking up sodas and snacks, or looking for a grocery item that prevented a trip to “town,” as locals call the town of Liberty, some 15 miles away.
The property is going through a transition at the moment, with owner Phil Fitzgerald negotiating a deal to sell the store and hotel. Fitzgerald said the deal could be complete within the next 60-90 barring any last-minute problems.
For the people who live in Moss Hill, the store closing has created a hardship as they now must drive 8-10 miles away to purchase fuel.
“It’s been an adjustment for us, too,” Fitzgerald said.
If the deal goes as planned, the present store could be razed to make way for a new one.
“It’s still a ways away, but if they buy it, I look for them to tear it down and build a new one,” he said.
Fitzgerald has owned the property since 2000, adding a hotel in later years. For the last four years, the business was leased with Fitzgerald retaining ownership of the building and the roughly 1-acre lot.
“When I was a kid, there were seven stores in our area – Mettlen’s Blanchard’s, Cain’s, Small’s, ours and two other locations in Snake River,” he said. “Now there are only a couple but you can’t get gas there.”
Fitzgerald was tight-lipped regarding the identity of the buyer, but said that as soon as the deal is final, he will share more information.
“It’s a little premature right now to say anything but it’s getting real close to being complete,” he said.