A year after a fire swept through a local fruit market, it is rising from the ashes.

The Ken’s Fruit Market at Plainfield Avenue, one of three market properties in the Grand Rapids area, was set ablaze September 2016. The fire caused more than $1 million in damages, but the 18,000-square-foot building was rebuilt, reopened in April and, now, business is thriving.

Alex Courts, who is the owner of the fruit market alongside his father Ken Courts and his mother Gina Courts, said sales have increased since the store reopened five months ago.

“We have probably a 30 percent increase in business since we have reopened,” Alex Courts said.

Before the fire, less than 500 shoppers visited that location per day, according to Courts, but now, more than 600 shoppers visit the Plainfield location.

Brad Padget, the store manager, said he noticed the increase from the day the doors were opened. People lined up outside before 7 a.m. to be the first shoppers inside. There is a mixture of new and longtime shoppers who purchase items daily, but he credits the boost in shoppers to people who missed having a small and local store.

To read the entire story, pick up this week's edition of the Grand Rapids Business Journal or visit their website.