Ariens Company, a Wisconsin-based outdoor power equipment manufacturer, signed the first lease in the first 600,000 square foot building in the new First Park 94 business park in the Village of Somers.  Friday, December 16, 2016 was the first day of operation for Ariens and it was celebrated with a ribbon cutting ceremony which included local dignitaries and an official “handing over the keys” by Adam Moore of First Industrial to Ariens Vice President of Global Supply Chain, James Merwin.
The new distribution center will consolidate warehousing operations in the Fox Valley area of Wisconsin, Matteson, Illinois, and Jasper, Indiana.  The Somers location will be the main hub for products and parts under the Ariens and Gravely brand names. George Stoner, President of the Village of Somers Board of Trustees spoke at the event.


“I’d like to begin with a big thank you to Ariens for choosing Somers to be the home of your new Midwest Distribution Center.  I had the opportunity to visit the Ariens facilities in Brillion, and on behalf of the entire community of Somers, we are very proud to have a Wisconsin-based business with an exceptional reputation move here.  As a side note, I purchased my first Ariens snow blower this year from a local dealer and have already had a chance to use it.  I LOVE the hand warmer handles!
This beautiful development has come a long way since April 13, 2015, the day the Plan Commission approved the conceptual site for First Park 94.  At the time, Somers had no industrial parks, no tax incremental districts and this site had no sewer and water service.  The success of this industrial park is the direct result of partnering with exceptional teams of professionals.

Thank you to the teams at:

  • Kenosha County Executive office
  • Kenosha County Planning and Development
  • Kenosha County Highway Department
  • KABA
  • Ehlers Advisory Firm
  • and, First Industrial, and their team of professionals who had the vision and commitment to create this beautiful industrial park

Currently, the Village of Somers is experiencing substantial growth in economic development.  When Somers residents voted to create a village in 2015, the Board of Trustees and myself immediately responded to developers who were waiting in the wings to make Somers their home.  As our first priority, we established two tax incremental districts and provided the needed utilities to close the deals.
The result is $362 million dollars of new long term development on the books and a $5.796 million dollar investment in infrastructure in 17 short months.  That impressive growth number means Somers is meeting the needs of businesses who want to invest here.
With respect to the future, we are currently working on new developments that will occur in 2017 and 2018.  Additionally, our Board took action in November this year to adopt for the first time in Somers history a Capital Improvement Plan.  These improvements will positively benefit the life style of our resident s and advance the economy in Somers and Kenosha County looking out ten years.
Again, welcome Ariens and thank you to everyone for celebrating with us today.

Quality lifestyle…
Low cost of local government…
and abundant natural resources.
We have it all in Somers and we love it here!

  –George Stoner, December 16, 2016


Welcome Ariens!
Sign at Ribbon Cutting Ceremony on December 16, 2016
(Photo by Jacqueline Klapproth Nelson)


Left to Right: Samatha Kerkman (Wis. State Assembly); James Merwin (Ariens); Jim Kreuser (Kenosha County); Adam Moore (First Industrial); Rod Bolhous (Ariens); Werner Brisske (Partners in Design Architects); George Stoner (Village of Somers); Todd Battle (KABA); Greg Mayer (Plant Manager)
(Photo by Jacqueline Klapproth Nelson)


Adam Moore of First Industrial “handing over the keys” to James Merwin of Ariens
(Photo by Jacqueline Klapproth Nelson)


Warehouse Stocked With New Ariens Products
(Photo by Jacqueline Klapproth Nelson)


Rod Bolhous, Ariens Chief Operating Officer
(Photo by Jacqueline Klapproth Nelson)


James Merwin, Ariens Vice President of Global Supply Chain

(Photo by Jacqueline Klapproth Nelson)


Jim Kreuser, Kenosha County Executive
(Photo by Jacqueline Klapproth Nelson)


Adam Moore, First Industrial

(Photo by Jacqueline Klapproth Nelson)


George Stoner, Village of Somers and Todd Battle, Kenosha Area Business Alliance (KABA)
(Photo by Jacqueline Klapproth Nelson)