Van Dan's has been part of the Glenwood Community for many years. In 1938, brothers Van and Dan Lybbert opened up a butcher shop and operated as Lybbert Brothers.
Several months later, in early 1939, they bought a restaurant and small grocery store and added the butcher shop to the back of it. It was a family business with other brothers and their families helping in different ways.
There are always challenges in running a business. Van Dan’s building eventually developed problems. The flat roof had to be repaired many times. The floor also needed repairs. By 2004, problems from a leaky roof left Van Dan’s faced with shutting down, building a new building or replacing the roof. They really didn't want to shut down and leave Glenwood without services. The cost of building a new building was too high for the amount of business being done, so replacing the roof looked like the best option.
Community Futures Alberta Southwest provided Van Dan’s with the ability to put a cottage style roof put on the store and Van Dan’s continue to do other repairs each winter to make it a better building.
Van Dan’s services now include basic groceries and meats, basic hardware, convenience and snack foods. The meat business has now moved to a separate business known as The Chopping Block and operated by Doral Lybbert with help from his family.
Many of the meat products sold at the store come from The Chopping Block. The day to day operations of Van and Dan's is taken care of Jolane Shipley and Cheryle Lybbert along with local employees. Their husbands Dwain Shipley and Doral Lybbert are great supporters and do much of the renovation work. Their mother Grace Lybbert is still with them in Glenwood but is not able to be as actively involved as she once was.
After 74 years, Van Dan’s still enjoy being part of the Glenwood Community and providing service to their customers. The spirit of entrepreneurship is going strong in all of our communities and Community Futures is there, ready to help.