Known for the friendly staff and for getting family dinners out of a pinch, a Saskatoon staple in City Park will close in November.
“I’m really disappointed … it seems like things shut down and I don’t know if they think about what it’s going to do to people who depended on this place for so many years, and now they’re going to be left high and dry,” said lifelong City Park resident Susan Gaudet. “They had really good garlic bread there and I’m really disappointed.”
Owned by Loblaw Companies Ltd. the Shop Easy Foods store on Seventh Avenue in Saskatoon has seen profits dwindle in the past several years, according to a company spokesperson. While the decision was tough for the company, they didn’t see the operation turning around and they’ve given notices to 15 employees as well as “generous severance” to help with the transition.
But for Gaudet and other long-time neighbourhood residents, they’re losing a piece of history in the area.
“Many years ago when I was a kid I remember my mom and I used to go grocery shopping there all the time when the economy was okay … and I remember us going over and getting groceries and wheeling the cart home and then I would bring the empty cart back to the store,” Gaudet said.
“I always felt rather smug because we had this neighbourhood grocery store we could run to when we needed something last minute or if we ran out of something.”
While Gaudet has seen a decline in the diversity offered at the store, it certainly continues to attract customers, despite dialing back on a fresh meat counter and some produce.
With the shop closing, she said she’s worried about customers who depended on the corner store because it was within walking distance and they didn’t have a car.
“For the people that don’t drive, what are they going to do, they’re going to have to find ways to get somewhere and I just don’t know how it’s going to work,” she said.
Area business City Perks started a petition to save the grocery store and they’ve already collected dozens of signatures. But according to Loblaw, closing the shop is a done deal.