It is this commitment that has enabled our family business to thrive and survive for the last 75 years.
Bill Baffes was literally raised in his parent’s Mom & Pop store in the South Side of Chicago. As a small boy, he often accompanied his Dad to the South Water Market.
Upon graduating from high school, Bill attended Knox College and graduated in 1958. He was a part-time teacher, and then served in the U.S. Air Force.
Soon after Bill married his college sweetheart, Joan, and after six months of marriage, he and his brother-in-law, George Kapsimalis bought their first store on 111th Street.
Five years later, Bill became obsessed with that beautiful treed lot on 108th and Western, and with a little money and a lot of persuasion, convinced several investors to build him a beautiful store, which he named County Fair.
After two years at County Fair, his partner George passed away and Bill was forced to wear two hats.
During the next several years, he bought two additional stores.
His love affair with the original store was overwhelming, and he decided to sell the other stores, concentrate on expanding our present location, which now encompasses an entire city block, and is known throughout Chicagoland as one of the most exciting food stores.
As Bill’s children Terri, Tom, Katie, and Chrissy graduated from college, they all contributed to our present success.
Bill’s only son, Tom Baffes is now the President of County Fair. Bill’s son-in-law, Mike Winkler is the General Manager.
"Tom is a great role model for the employees to emulate because he’s a great team player whose enthusiasm rubs off on everyone around him." Bill said.