The Shopko Hometown store on Kewaunee’s north side will close May 5 along with 138 other stores in the beleaguered chain, the company announced this week.

“Through our conversations with the potential buyers, it has become clear that it is in our best interest to operate with a significantly smaller store footprint,” the company said in a statement Wednesday (Feb. 6). “Today we are announcing the closure of an additional 139 Shopko and Shopko Hometown stores. Further, we will relocate approximately 50 optical centers in closing stores to new freestanding locations.”

The list of Shopko stores that will be closing now stands at about 250.

Shopko Inc. announced Jan. 16 that it had filed voluntary petitions for a court-supervised financial restructuring under Chapter 11 of the United States Bankruptcy Code. The company said it is seeking to facilitate the restructuring as a result of excess debt and ongoing competitive pressures. The petitions have been filed in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Nebraska.

“I met with the local Shopko manager to let him know the city will create a task force of workforce professionals to assist displaced workers if this is not offered by Shopko,” said Kewaunee Mayor Sandi Christman. “As for the building and maintaining a retail presence, I will be putting together a task force to address this also.”

There are parties interested in bringing a pharmacy into Kewaunee to replace the facility inside Shopko Hometown, Christman added.

The closest “go-forward locations” that Shopko intends to maintain are in Green Bay on East Mason Street, Ashwaubenon’s Bay Park Square, and the Urban Edge shopping center in Suamico, according to a list posted at Shopko Hometown stores in Sister Bay and Oconto also made the cut, and one of the free-standing optical centers will be located in Oshkosh.