I decided to take a vacation day to make the 3.5 hour drive up to the Hamilton, IL Dadant store today because I needed quite a few bottles and figured I'd save on some shipping costs. Another local beekeeper came along with me and a couple others from my area called in orders for me to pick up while I was there. I was very impressed with my visit. When we entered the store, a guy walked by and ask how we were doing. He introduced himself as Gabe and walked around the store with us, telling us about several of the items they sell. Once we finished looking at their display items, he came up to the register, entered our orders, gave us a couple of free copies of American Bee Journal, and set us up with the lady who handles payments. We talked to him for probably 30-45 minutes total and then he headed into the offices. I couldn't remember his name so I asked the lady at the payment desk and she told me it was Gabe Dadant. I was very impressed to have one of the family members spend so much time with a couple of guys just coming in out of the blue. All of the employees I met there were very friendly. We had an error in one of our orders (our fault) that we didn't notice until we picked everything up at the dock. They worked with us to get it straightened out and didn't get frustrated that we caused them extra work.
I typically have a few things that I prefer to order from specific suppliers but I will definitely be making an annual trip up to Hamilton in the future. From top to bottom in their organization, they appear to have a great group of employees that understand the value of customer service.