tobaccosuperstore

Tobacco Superstore has become one of the largest cigarette and tobacco retailers in the United States.

By Alan Dorich

Tobacco Superstore Inc. creates a friendly atmosphere in each of its locations, CFO and COO Joe Marelle says. In fact, some customers frequent its stores because they are used to its employees’ friendly faces, he says.

Those employees not only wait on the customer, but go the extra step of asking them about their day. “[That’s true] especially in our small town stores,” Marelle says. “We try to create a neighborhood atmosphere for the adult consumer.”

Based in Forrest City, Ark., Tobacco Superstore has 88 locations in four states that sell cigarettes, vapor and electronic cigarettes, premium cigars, pipe tobacco, moist snuff, food and beverages. Founder David Cohn founded the company in 1993 with a vision of opening the largest cigarette and tobacco store in the South.

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DutchWarFarm

Pennsylvania-based Dutch-Way Farm Market serves its community through quality initiatives, unique recipe offerings and excellent customer service.

By Stephanie Crets

Through quality initiatives and top-notch service, Dutch-Way Farm Market always wants to do right by the customer. The company does that by serving customers in its three locations in Pennsylvania: Myerstown grocery store and restaurant; Gap grocery store, restaurant and hardware store; and Schaefferstown grocery store and restaurant – all under the Dutch-Way banner.

Founded in 1972, Dutch-Way began as a farmer’s market that grew into a supermarket with a small, diner-style restaurant attached to the building. The current owners, Rich High, Cliff Snader and Jeff Snader, then purchased the Gap location in 1994 from the original owner, David Martin, and expanded to the other two locations in 2001.

“When they expanded and rebuilt the new Myerstown location, they went out on a limb based on some other local stores that had a larger restaurant attached to it; that’s where we started doing buffets,” Director of Operations Jason Bennett explains. “They saw an opportunity and wanted to continue to expand how we do business. As that grew and became successful, that’s when I got more involved running the Myerstown location.”

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3seabrook store front

Arlan’s Market continues its expansion during its 25th anniversary year as it remodels its grocery stores in Texas.

By Russ Gager

Those looking for evidence of the importance of independent grocers in Texas need look no further than Crestview, a neighborhood of Austin. There, a neighborhood association closed off half the parking lot of an 11,000-square-foot grocery store founded in 1953 on the occasion of the owners’ retirement and the purchase of the business by Arlan’s Market, an independent grocery chain headquartered in Seabrook, Texas, near Houston.

“There must have been 400 or 500 people who showed up,” President Ames Arlan estimates. “The family run grocery store is very dear to the community, so they really came out in full support and did a really nice barbecue. The mom still worked here up until the last day – she’s 85 years old – and her sons worked here all their lives. One of the sons has been working there since he was 12 and he’s 65 now. So the entire family is retiring.”

Arlan’s Market is in the process of remodeling the store. “It’s our smallest store, but in a really neat neighborhood,” Arlan says. “It’s going to be a great opportunity for us to add a lot of organics, specialty items and new refrigerated cases. Most of the homes were built in the 1940s and ’50s. People have lived here since the 1950s and ’60s, and younger people are moving in.”

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orchardsupply

Becoming a part of the communities it serves is a vital part of the Orchard Supply Hardware formula for success.

By Eric Slack

California-based hardware retailer, Orchard Supply Hardware (OSH) has been serving West Coast neighborhoods for more than 80 years. Founded in 1931 as a purchasing cooperative, today Orchard Supply Hardware operates neighborhood hardware and garden stores focused on paint, repairs and the backyard. Orchard Supply Hardware was acquired by home improvement retailer Lowe’s in September 2013 but remained a separate business unit. The hardware retailer currently operates 81 stores in California and Oregon with each store averaging approximately 40,000 square feet of retail space. 

“We are most known for our neighbors-helping-neighbors philosophy at every store, which is a commitment to fitting our format into the neighborhoods we call home,” President Bob Tellier says. “Our stores have been opened in former car dealerships, bowling alleys, multi-unit facilities and other shuttered facilities.”

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estherprice

The name of Esther Price Candies has meant quality in Cincinnati and Dayton, Ohio, for 90 years, and through the Internet, now nationwide.

By Russ Gager

Home cooking is always best, and that includes home candy-making. So the tried-and-true methods of candy-making employed at Esther Price Candies – which date back to the founder’s home business 90 years ago in Dayton, Ohio – keep customers coming back for more.

“People from here move down to Florida, and all their relatives and friends up here send them our candy, and this happened continuously because Esther Price is one of the things we are noted for in this area and potato chips,” President James Day says. “They still call and order for their friends at Christmastime, and that’s why our mail-order business is so strong.”

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