Lucky’s Market held its grand opening in Columbia on Jan. 15 with plans to not only provide a large variety of grocery items, but to also reach out to support the local community.
Lucky’s implemented a system that both benefits local charities and encourages customers to be environmentally conscious. When customers bring in their own reusable grocery bags, they receive ten cents off their purchase per bag. However, patrons can choose to opt out of saving the ten cents and donate that money to a local charity instead. If a customer chooses to do this, they receive a wooden token worth ten cents. These wooden tokens can be placed in one of three boxes located near the store’s exit. Each box represents a different local organization.
One of the groups Lucky’s currently donates to is First Chance for Children. This charity’s goal is to help low-income families prepare their children for kindergarten by providing books to read to their children. They also organize various “Lend & Learn Libraries” that give families a safe place to play and learn while meeting with other families in their area. First Chance for Children’s motto is “Ready for School, Ready for Life.”
Jack Jensen, executive director for First Chance for Children, is pleased with Lucky’s decision to work with his organization. First Chance for Children didn’t even have to go out of their way to receive Lucky’s help.
“They contacted us,” Jensen said. “They had people coming into town, I think, to get a feel for what Columbia was like.”
The first day Lucky’s was officially open, a stand featuring First Chance for Children was displayed to provide information about their educational program. Jensen said that it was a great opportunity to tell the community about their mission.
The other organizations Lucky’s is currently working with include the PedNet Coalition and the Community Gardens Coalition. PedNet strives to promote active transportation and healthy lifestyles in Columbia. Community Gardens focuses on encouraging community gardens for the betterment of Columbia. Lucky’s will continue to work with these organizations for three months after its opening.
Community involvement isn’t the only thing that makes Lucky’s a smart choice for local consumers.
According to Holly Westmoreland, a manager at the Columbia location, Lucky’s tries “to choose smaller college towns where people are trying to be healthy.”
Westmoreland highlighted different products provided by Lucky’s. Some products Lucky’s prides itself on include natural foods and a deli serving “never-ever” beef, which means that the meat is nitrate-free and has no added growth hormones. Lucky’s also offers standard brand grocery items that can be found in more traditional
“[It’s] a nice experience for people who aren’t used to having that many options,” Westmoreland said.
Lucky’s also lets customers sample products before they buy. This allows customers to decide whether or not they like an item before making a purchase, ensuring optimal customer satisfaction. This opportunity is not available in the liquor department as a whole, but Lucky’s does offer daily wine tastings.
Lucky’s is another option in the wide range of grocery stores already located in Columbia. Some of these competitors include Hy-Vee, Schnucks, Clovers, Natural Grocers and Wal-Mart. Each store caters to different customer needs and allows many choices when shopping for grocery items.
Lucky’s Market is located on 11 South Providence Road in Columbia. More information about the store can be found at http://luckysmarket.com.