New owner’s upgrades already in effect at Farm Crest store

       A Lilo and Stich cartoon character isn't doing the hula atop a vibrating Farm Crest cash register anymore. Newer, faster, computerized registers are among several changes that have come to the busy Westside convenience store/gas station at 21st Street and Colorado Avenue since it and 16 other Farm Crest stores along Colorado's Front Range were purchased by Pester (pronounced piece-ster) Marketing of Houston this month.
       Store Manager Cecie Weldon said she is happy with these and other changes that have come with the new ownership. Prominent among these are the new Phillips 66 pumps that allow outside payment and offer diesel fuel. The store is also accepting three credit cards that weren't taken before (government/fleet, Conoco and Phillips 66), she said.
       Still being offered are Farm Crest dairy products (as well as the punch cards). The Farm Crest name and its red awnings will remain on the buildings, while this fall Pester plans to “brand” Phillips 66 on the canopy over the pumps and put Phillips 66 and “1st Stop” on the gas price sign, explained Rich Spresser, executive vice president of Pester Marketing.
       1st Stop is the name of 24 convenience stores/gas stations that Pester owns in other parts of Colorado. None previously had been in Colorado Springs.
       Pester has been “in an acquisition mode for the last 5 years,” Spresser said, in response to why the the Farm Crest stores were bought. Among previous purchases were the Cliff Brice stores and “smaller groups” in the San Luis Valley, he said.
       “This is a great move for Pester [and] a win-win for everyone who loves the Farm Crest and 1st Stop brands and products,” he said.
       A Farm Crest store has been at the 21st/Colorado location since 1976.
       Founded in the mid-1950s in Iowa, Pester Marketing has owned and operated service stations and stores in Colorado under the Fina, Pester and Coastal brands since 1975.

Westside Pioneer article