Wednesday, May 15, 2013

The Family Market: Under Renovations

The Family Market in Long Reach is under renovation and is staying open during said renovations. I had the day off today and I decided to go to Long Reach Village Center among other places to get a feel for how things are going throughout Columbia.
Among the places I visited was the Family Market. The first thing that struck me was how deserted the place was. It immediately conjured up old images of the Safeway (pictured above) that once occupied the very space now occupied by the Family Market. Some lights had been dimmed in certain parts of the store and most of the shelves were bare. I was forced to ask just what was going on. There was a sign in the vestibule that reads "We are Staying Open" so that lead me to believe that the Market was in the middle of some sort of renovation.

I had once had my doubts on the sustainability of an Independent Grocer with stiff competition from National Chains like Walmart, Costco, and Wegmans to name a few but I think that the Family Market with its selection of rare produce and international foods not found at so called upscale Grocers like Trader Joes and Wegmans, I believe that it had found its niche and was happy to be wrong.

I was obviously worried about the fate of the Family Market after my visit today so I did all nosy Bloggers like myself do; I called their number and asked what was going on. I was happy to learn that yes in fact the Family Market is under renovation and that there is a very good reason that the store is so barren; the refrigeration system is being upgraded and replaced and during the transition, the amount of stock that can be sold is limited to strictly non-perishables.

When I was told about this change, I was reminded just how important refrigeration is to a Grocery Store. Departments like the Bakery, Deli, Seafood, Dairy, Frozen Foods, and even Produce has to be shut down if the Refrigerators are out of order. With those departments out of order, how can a Grocer appear to be well stocked? Of course the shelves will be barren without refrigeration, all the stock will go bad. No matter how good business is, the shelves would have to be barren.

The good news is that in a month or so, the renovations will be complete and the Family Market will be as good as new. I can only hope the owners are pro-active in advertising and announce a grand re-opening throughout East Columbia so that it can regain its customer base.     

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

New Posts Coming Soon

Just as the title suggests, new posts are coming, I have not forgotten about this blog. I would also like to take this opportunity to express my deepest condolences to the Friends and Family of fellow Howard County Blogger Dennis Lane. Mr. Lane was taken from us on Friday morning far too early in a senseless act of violence. Though I did not know Mr. Lane on a personal level I was an avid reader of his blog; A Tale of Two Cities and he played a part in how I wrote and crafted my blog. I think I speak for all when I say that Mr. Lane will be missed.