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Truckstop Travels: Simple Elegance Welcomes Customers at the Petro Fargo

Posted in: Truckstop Business, Marketing & Retail, Operations, Truckstop Travels


I always enjoy visiting Petro Fargo owned by the Schatz family in North Dakota, it showcases what is good about our industry and highlights how focused operators can create a positive shopping experience for drivers of all types

Late last year, I had the opportunity to stop at the location with Kevin Puebla from DAS Companies, a NATSO Chairman's Circle member.

When we were inside the Petro Fargo’s travel store, which is run by Deanne Schatz-Eisenshenk, Kevin said it reminded him of a Parisian street. The light fixtures, canopies, accents, and color scheme certainly create that image.

The truckstop is exceptionally clean and well organized. Deanne’s operation supports the less-is-more approach to retailing and creates an almost perfect feeling of placement. If there is any truckstop that follows Feng Shui, the ancient art of balancing the energy within a space, it is Deanne’s.

The location is filled with simple yet elegant touches throughout the property. My favorite is the simple plant on an elegant stand that greets every customer who uses the restrooms in the main building. You know that this touch of class extends all the way through the property.

Deanne’s eye for the little things that make life on the road bearable for our core customers is impeccable. She has a soul for operational excellence, and is always willing to share her expertise with her fellow operators.

Deanne’s drive means that she is always looking to improve. While the location in current format is already as welcoming as they come, the location is undertaking a remodel in 2015 and Deanne’s approach to simple elegance will be on full display. Without a doubt, the location will be one of the most eye appealing locations on the interstate, fully modern in its approach as well as operationally pleasing to customers, specifically the over-the-road drivers.

I cannot wait to visit the location once the remodel is complete and share those pictures with other NATSO members.













/// Read more Truckstop Travels here.  

Photo Credit: Darren Schulte/NATSO

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About the Author

Darren Schulte

Darren Schulte

Darren Schulte serves as Vice President of Membership at NATSO. In this role, he directs recruitment, retention and customer service for truckstop and travel plaza members. He is also responsible for developing NATSO products and programs, particularly those relating to education, research and training for truckstop and travel plaza operators.

Schulte also leads NATSO's Profitable Retail Review program. A Profitable Retail Review is a custom assessment of your truckstop, including recommendations for every aspect of your facility, from actionable ideas to improve revenue to tactical ways to improve your net operating costs. Learn about NATSO's Profitable Retail Review program here.

Schulte joined NATSO with nearly three decades of experience in truckstop and travel plaza operations and merchandising. Schulte has worked for: 

  • Love's Travel Stops and Country Stores,
  • HESS Corporation, 
  • Petro Stopping Centers, and
  • TSC Global/Barjan LLC.