Wegmans opens in/humiliates Malvern
Wegmans opens in/humiliates Malvern
An article in today's DelCo Times nearly depressed me to death.
The headline: Joy of Wegman's arrives with new Chesco store
It's about a Wegmans (no apostrophe) opening up, one with an Irish pub in it. And people who don't even live that close to it are, like, really ecstatic. It's possible that the only way to do this thing justice is to go line by line.
EAST WHITELAND Feel the love.
Okay. East Whiteland? Seems a little on the nose. Love, meanwhile, feels kind of extreme for a supermarket, even a nice one, opening up. But as we'll soon see, it's the right word for the situation.
Wegmans' Malvern store opened on Sunday morning at 7 to a first-day crowd that lined the front of the massive 130,000-square-foot building, made a turn and continued out into the parking lot.
Look, people used to camp out for NKOTB tickets. To each their own and such. But. Nobody likes lines. Or crowds. The grocery store will still be there later.
Customers came from New Castle, Del., Newtown Square, Royersford and around the corner in Charlestown and Tredyffrin.
"My property values just went up," Tredyffrin resident Robin Gorneau said about the opening of the Wegmans supermarket, the first retailer in Uptown Worthington.
You, madam, are a Martian, but that's okay because you appear to be living on Mars. Property values went up? Because you can now get pre-cooked rotisserie chicken at low low prices? (And values? Either she owns multiple properties or she's talking about a moral situation.) And it's the town's first retailer? And there's a place called Uptown Worthington?
Gorneau compared the opening day event to a microcosm of America saying she was there to support her neighborhood, her community and the great state of Pennsylvania.
Okay, now the reporter's getting swept up in the moment. Your paper is in DelCo. The store is in ChesCo. Have some self-respect. And this Gorneau character's giving me a confused-jingoistic Palin vibe.
Gorneau, who was minutes away from walking into the new store, the second in chain to feature an Irish-style pub, commented, "I may never cook again."
Robin, you settle the hell down right now.
Her husband, David Crowther, commented on what he considered a perfect week; BP's gushing oil line in the Gulf was capped and the Malvern Wegmans opened.
Here's where we realize Gorneau and Crowther spouses with different last names? intrigue! are in a cult. Weakened by fluorescent lights and chef-prepared meals ready to go, they have given their souls over to the supermarket giant. The Kool Aid is just that cheap.
At 7 a.m. sharp, the first customers in the store were greeted by Wegmans' employees who shouting out the company cheer.
Let's ignore the typo and concentrate on this: There's a company cheer. And, when the economy's bad enough, you can pay people enough to shout it in a parking lot at 7 a.m.
Employees with cameras took pictures of the parade of customers as they came through the front door. Customers took photos of employees.
But when they went to upload the photos, they found their cameras had shut down and could not be revived,. The memory cards were wiped clean except for a single word document. In small type it read simply, "I was only a camera, but I deserved better than this."
Wegmans estimated about 1,000 people were in line before the store opened.
"It's a very nice crowd," said Jo Natale, Wegmans spokeswoman, who started her workday at 5:40 a.m. "We weren't sure what (volume) to expect on a hot summer day but we're just thrilled."
Hey, did you hear they stopped the oil leak?!
The Malvern store employs 650 workers gleamed from a pool of 6,000 who applied for jobs at the Rochester, N.Y.-based supermarket chain's newest location.
Wrong word? No! These 650 people gleamed from that application pool like pennies in a wishing well.
Wegmans Malvern store is one of several in the region. Its Downingtown store opened in 2003. Last fall it opened its Collegeville location, its first market with a pub. In 2012,
Wegmans plans to open a store in King of Prussia.
Hi, welcome to the future. Pennsylvania, 2010. And I'm telling you it's great here. The air is clean, the water's clean, even the dirt, it's clean. Property values are way up, cooking is way down. And we have more excellent olive bars than any other planet we communicate with.
Uptown Worthington, a proposed mixed-use community of retail, residential and commercial, is being developed by O'Neill Properties of King of Prussia. The property was the longtime home of Worthington Steel, and before that, National Rolling Mill.
Now those former steel workers greet you when you walk in! Okay, that was cruel. I'm sorry.
The next retailer to open in Uptown Worthington will be a Target store. It is scheduled to open next Sunday.
Mass suicide in the parking lot. Wear a robe!
Rob Dukes of Charlestown documented the progress of the new Wegmans every step of the way since ground breaking in May 2009.
"I stopped by on Sundays. Took a picture every week from the same place in the parking lot," Dukes said, pointing to the spot.
Dukes presented the photo album to the store management.
But, flipping through, they realized it was just the word "WEGMAN" over and over again written in feces on loose leaf.
Dukes, who said he had shopped at the Downingtown store every day, expects to move his grocery shopping to the Malvern location which is closer to his home.
Well, at this point you're invested.
Denise Foehl of Royersford "loves Wegmans. The produce is impeccable, the olive bar is awesome."
"Now, if you'll excuse me, I have tickets to The Sorcerer's Apprentice, which looks awesome as well."
Charlestown residents Marianne and Remo Caccavo were first in line, arriving at 4:30 a.m. Sunday.
In accordance with company rules, they were permitted to choose one Wegmans employee to keep as a pet. After a quick survey of the choices they selected Harvey Lewis, an 87-year-old retired steel worker.
The Caccavos have shopped at Wegmans Downingtown since it opened seven years ago.
With a Wegmans closer to home, they said they plan to have dinner at the pub, and then do their shopping.
That is, assuming the pub serves dinner at 4:30 a.m.
Gerry Hunt from Newtown Square is a regular shopper at Wegmans Downingtown but now expects to take her business to the new store
If the main theme of this article is that people are way too excited about Wegmans Malvern, the leitmotif is that Wegmans Downingtown is screwed.
Ethel Alves and her mother, Maggy, from New Castle, Del. want their own Wegmans in the First State..
Ethel Alves she wrote to Wegmans headquarters to inform them the abandoned Chrysler plant property was available.
That's very proactive, but I don't think Downingtown could take another blow.
Alves is a big fan of the supermarket chain, having shopped at Wegmans Downingtown, Collegeville, Princeton and Woodbridge, N.J., and a Wegmans in New York. The Malvern Wegmans, however, was their first opening day experience.
"Guess I don't need this anymore," she said rising up out of her wheelchair and tossing it across the parking lot.
Ruth Westcott of West Chester was at the opening day for reasons other than shopping.
Please please please be terrorism.
"I worked at National Rolling Mills for 29 years until they moved to Aberdeen, Md.," Westcott said. "I got here every day at quarter till six in the morning."
Westcott said she worked in most every part of the plant and was one of the last women employed there.
Westcott said she retired at age 67 but would still be working at the mill if had not relocated.
"I loved it," she said.
Doesn't sound like she's ruled out terrorism.
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