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The family always returned to Gimli, to the cottage in
the summers and to Amma and Afi's at the "Big House"
on weekends year round. Terry and Lorna worked quietly
behind the scenes to help Joe and Lara keep the business
going in their later years. Icelandic wool fashions were
at the height on their popularity and Lorna, who had
become a publishers representative, began growing the
breadth and selection of books offered, eventually taking
over the former drugstore space.
When Terry and Lorna's second son Soren, who had
moved to Gimli to get out of the city, suggested he might
like to take a crack at retail, Lara and Joe happily gave
him a portion of the floor space and a starting budget of
Having gone to school with Chip & Pepper, who were
just starting out themselves, Soren placed his first big
order with them. Their colourful tie-dyed product was a
perfect fit for a beach town and Soren was off to the races.
With the help and encouragement of a few special people
in the clothing business, Soren soon had the manufacturers knocking on the door begging to get their product in
the store. He also designed the iconic Tergesen's t-shirts
and sweatshirts using a graphic from an old letterhead.
Tragedy struck in 1991 when Soren was killed in a car
accident, leaving behind his five year old son Kol who was
Soren's world. Terry and Lorna's third son Stefan stepped
in at that time to carry on Soren's revitalization and to
continue to build on his vision of what Tergesen's could
be. Upon stepping into the roll of retail manager, Stefan
was green, but brought years of customer service knowledge from the restaurant industry which served him well
in building up the store's clientele.
He also found that one of the employees already working for Tergesen's, Joanne Liang, had a very special talent
for knowing what all kinds of people wanted and quickly
made her the number one buyer. Over thirty years on,
she is still finding the most unique items for every taste.
The one thing though that never changes at Tergesen's
is their commitment to quality and that strive to stay
ahead of the curve. As Stefan likes to say, "You can't
please all of the people all of the time but nobody said
you can't try!"
Written by: IP Staff in collaboration with
Stefan Tergesen & Tergesen Family
Photos provided by: Stefan Tergesen

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entrance in 1912-1913 it provided space for the growing
housewares, clothing, dry goods, and groceries.
With a growing business and family of three daughters
and three sons, as well as foster children, H.P. and Sigridur
built the "Big House" on Fourth Ave.. It was a three storey Sears-Roebuck kit home shipped by train and built in
1908. H.P. showed his faith in the future of the community when he installed a windmill to generate electricity
22 years before hydropower reached Gimli. Visitors were
also rightly impressed with Gimli's first flush toilet.
As well as building a family and business, H.P. was a
well known community and church leader. He served as
a councillor for the town prior to incorporation and later
served two terms as Mayor of Gimli from 1911-1913 and
1919-1923. Even when not on the council, he found himself at the center of discussions as the store had become
a meeting place to debate politics and share local news.
Over the years the business saw various changes,
the most dramatic being in the 20's during the depression, when the second floor (which had served at different times as the school, library, town hall, dance hall, and
rumoured home to Huldufolk spirits) was removed and
the materials were used to build a second store. The second store was built next to a competitor who was selling
groceries closer to the cottagers.
H.P. had been instrumental in attracting summer residents through his Winnipeg connections to whom he had
sold many of them their plots. Interestingly, the second
store was later moved back into town on First Ave,. where
it is now serving as Brennivin's Pizza.
As the children entered the business, Anna, the
eldest, served as bookkeeper and also ran the Wawanesa
Insurance business in Gimli. Robert became a pharmacist,
so a portion of the store was partitioned off and turned
into a drugstore which featured a very popular ice cream
counter. The general merchant was carried on by Johann
(Joe) and his wife Lara Solmundson, formerly a school
teacher and a lifelong passionate curler. Lara was the
matriarch of the family and the driving force at the store,
as well as in the community service groups she worked
with over her lifetime.
H.P.'s sons, Robert and Joe, both ran their respective
businesses very late into their lives as all of their offspring
went out into the world to seek their fortune elsewhere.
Joe and Lara had two sons.
Joey, had been a great hockey player for the Sudbury
Wolves and had been on one of the first teams to go play
in Russia, became a pharmacist and opened Tergesen's
Pharmacy in Arborg.
Their younger son, Terry, studied to become an architect and would later design hospitals and personal care
homes across the province. Right out of university, Terry
married his Gimli sweetheart, Lorna Stefanson, quickly
starting a family of four boys and one girl. After returning
to Gimli for a stint, they eventually moved to Winnipeg
when Terry joined an architect partnership.

Interlake Pulse 2019

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Interlake Pulse 2019

Interlake Retail Icon
Interlake Artist Spotlight
What is Proutopia?
The Town of Teulon’s Centennial
Healthy Living
Private Well -Water
Island Otters
Interlake Pulse 2019 - cover1
Interlake Pulse 2019 - cover2
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Interlake Pulse 2019 - Interlake Retail Icon
Interlake Pulse 2019 - 9
Interlake Pulse 2019 - Interlake Artist Spotlight
Interlake Pulse 2019 - 11
Interlake Pulse 2019 - What is Proutopia?
Interlake Pulse 2019 - The Town of Teulon’s Centennial
Interlake Pulse 2019 - Healthy Living
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Interlake Pulse 2019 - Private Well -Water
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Interlake Pulse 2019 - Island Otters
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