Local News

Wilson Red And White Grocery Store Reopens

Posted August 1, 2001

— Grocery stores sometimes seem to just keep getting bigger. But bigger is not better for everyone. A store in Wilson shows that old-fashioned neighborhood shops can still find a place in today's economy.

Wilson's independent Red and White grocery store is open again after closings its doors a year ago.

"I didn't think he was coming back. When I saw the sign that he was coming back, I said Lord, he's coming back," said shopper Lois Evans.

"It's great to come in here and see people that you know and it's very convenient," said Pat Forbes.

The store sat in the same place on a Wilson street for 30 years, until a new drug store came along and bought the property. Owner Bob Craft retired. But so many people missed the place that Craft's son, Robbie, decided to re-open right across the street.

"Robbie just got it in his blood and said hey, I got an opportunity to go back into business, what do you think about it? I said hey, if that's what you want, go for it. People are just so good to us," said Craft.

"Naturally, being in the grocery business all your life, growing up in it you dream is hopefully owning you own business. And in America -- what other place is there that will let you do that?" said Robbie Craft.

In staying with its community theme, the store decided to get rid of its aisle numbers altogether, and named the aisles after popular streets in Wilson. Want a can of beanie weenies? West Gold Street is the place to go. Want a box of Wheaties instead? East Lakeside Drive is where you will find them.

In the days of big box stores, this is just what some shoppers want. You do not just know the owner here. He just might be the person filling your bag.

The employees are excited, too. Of the 45 employees who were laid off last year, 44 came back to work in the new store.


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