Featured Retailer: Dittmer's Service
1356 W. Locust St., Davenport

Family-Run and Lots of Fun: Dittmer's in Davenport

featured retailer A family-run automotive store and local favorite, known as Dittmer's Service, has been a dedicated Iowa Lottery retailer since the lottery's inception in 1985. Dittmer's offers a full-service gas station and specializes in automotive repairs. The one-of-a-kind business is located at 1356 W. Locust St. in Davenport.

The store has been in the Dittmer family for nearly seven decades. In 1953, the property was purchased by Bill Dittmer and was converted into Dittmer's Service Inc. Since then, the business has been passed down to his two sons, Matt and Scott Dittmer.

Operating the store from the inside is Bill "Billy" Dittmer, grandson to the original owner. Matt is Billy's father and Scott is his uncle. Acting as the day-to-day manager, Billy works alongside eight full-time employees and three part-time employees.

In addition to providing car service, the automotive shop is a hub for local lottery players. It has become a routine that a group of eight to 10 players congregate in the shop every morning, Billy said. They hang out for an hour, get coffee, and talk about town happenings along with the latest lottery news.

"What keeps them coming back is the gossip," said Billy. "They're kind of like a big family."

When lotto jackpots are high, Billy described the crowd at the automotive store as "pretty crazy." He estimated that 75 to 80 percent of customers who purchase gas also purchase lottery tickets.

"We have $1,000 winners here and there," said Billy. "Back in '87 we had a jackpot winner of $600,000."

Despite the numerous electronic updates over the years, the Dittmers stick to a white spiral notebook to keep track of their sales. Every week, Matt Dittmer keeps record of the weekly sales and top winners, all on paper. This has been the traditional method of tracking sales at Dittmers since 1986.

With the competition of other retailers in the area, the Dittmers remain positive about their business. Billy confirmed that their exceptional and friendly service keeps the customers satisfied.

"We know what our customers want," said Billy.

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