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Fareway Builds Upon Its Presence in Iowa With New Sports Complex

Midwest food retailer becomes exclusive grocery store partner of outdoor turf complex in Norwalk
Marian Zboraj, Progressive Grocer
Fareway Norwalk Central
Artist's rendering of Fareway Fields, which is scheduled to open this spring.

Fareway Stores Inc. has partnered with Heartland Sports Properties on a new 10-acre outdoor turf complex located in the grocer's home state of Iowa at a large mixed-used development area known as Norwalk Central, which is still under construction. 

The new complex, located at the Gregg Young Auto Sports Campus, will be operated by Tipton, Iowa-based Heartland Sports and will open this spring as Fareway Fields. The partnership with Fareway provides for multiyear exclusive naming rights for the eight outdoor turf fields located at the complex. Naming rights include Fareway branding on two entrances to the outdoor complex, inclusion in two video boards, and signage to all fields. Fareway Fields will operate on a 32-week schedule starting this spring.

The partnership was a natural fit for Fareway, as the Midwest grocer is currently building an approximately 24,000-square-foot store on the prime corner entrance to Norwalk Central.

“Fareway will be the exclusive grocery store partner to the Gregg Young Auto Sports Campus and put their brand in front of 900,000 visitors over the next 18 months,” said Jake Shandri, partner at Waukee, Iowa-based Sportsman Solutions, who represented Heartland Sports Properties. “Both groups want to bring people to Norwalk to work, play and visit. We are thrilled to introduce Fareway Fields to Central Iowa!”

Sportsman Solutions will oversee operations of the turf complex, which consists of two 5-acre turf pods that can be used for baseball, soccer and softball. The south turf plaza will include batting cages, concessions operated according to Amazon’s Just Walk Out model, and high-definition video boards with rotating commercials/announcements.

“Fareway’s decision to participate and be the naming rights partner to the outdoor turf complex bolsters the credibility of the overall development plan of the sports campus. Fareway Fields and the included amenities that make up this area of the campus will showcase many firsts [in] the state of Iowa,” said Heartland Sports Properties Partner Mike Mahoney. “The development partners are putting together a unique offering and essentially handing Sportsman Solutions the keys to the house to sufficiently/successfully operate.”

“Fareway is proud to be a local partner on this transformational project,” noted Norwalk Fareway Grocery Manager Craig Choate.

In other recent news, Fareway has revealed plans to construct an approximately 10,600-square-foot store at the southwest corner of Highway 18 and Division Street in Hull, Iowa. Construction is planned to begin in late summer 2023, with a tentative opening in spring 2024.

The grocer also opened a new 21,00-square-foot store located at 9080 Mills Civic Parkway in West Des Moines in February. 

“This is the first of three metro area stores opening this year, and we are excited to continue our growth in conjunction with West Des Moines as it continues to expand,” said Fareway CEO Reynolds W. Cramer. 

Family-owned Fareway employs more than 12,000 associates in its 130-plus stores located in Iowa, Illinois, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska and South Dakota. The Boone, Iowa-based company is No. 77 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2022 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America. PG also named the grocer a 2023 Top Regional

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