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Wednesday - February 14, 2018 8:45 am

Onalaska was waiting for a Wal-Mart, 28 years ago

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In 1990, the Crossing Meadows Plaza near Exit 4 of I-90 was quickly being developed.  A year earlier, part of that area was considered as a possible site for a dog track.  The first Festival food store would open at Crossing Meadows during 1990, and Wal-Mart was looking at the shopping center as a location for its first outlet in the immediate La Crosse area.
 
In the Bridgeview Plaza area near Exit 3, McDonald's and the Ground Round were among the popular restaurants, along with Embers and Happy Chef.  The Happy Chef had replaced a Bridgeman's restaurant...and would later become the home of SSE Music.
 
The Catbirds basketball team was on its way to its first CBA championship, under Coach Flip Saunders.  The Catbirds beat Quad City and Albany in the playoffs before defeating Rapid City, 4 games to 1, in the league finals.  
 
And the Plaid Pantry on Jackson Street sold beer, pop, liquor, and wine...and advertised "a little bit of everything."  The pantry was still in business 28 years ago, 1990, yesterday in La Crosse.  
 

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Brad Williams

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from U-W-La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area.  Brad writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse.  He's been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.  

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