By Anna Lothson
News broke today that Caribou Coffee is shutting down most of its Chicago locations, but only one Oak Park location will be affected.
Max Williams, Director of Downtown Oak Park, confirmed that he learned the Caribou at 423 N. Harlem will be staying, but the other shop at the corner of Oak Park Avenue and Lake Street will close Sunday, April 14.
The Minneapolis-based cafe chain announced that it will be closing a majority of its 66 Illinois locations; more than a dozen will be converted to Peet's Coffee & Tea shops over the next few months. Williams wasn't told if or when the Harlem Avenue Caribou would make that switch. Caribou was bought last year by The Joh. A. Benckiser Group, a German investment company, who bought Peet's just months before.
Despite the ownership change, the news of the closures hit suddenly in the area. Caribou President Mike Tattersfield released a statement today to the press.
"Over the past few months, we at Caribou have revisited our business strategy, including closely evaluating our performance by market to make decisions that best position us for long-term growth," Tattersfield said." While the decisions we've made have been difficult for our team in Minneapolis, as well as our team members across the country and our guests and fans everywhere, we are working to make this transition as seamless as possible for the Caribou community."