Hundreds of eager shoppers turned out for the official grand opening and “ribbon” cutting ceremony at Lucky’s Market, 1033 East Oakland Park Blvd., in the totally remodeled building formerly occupied by Pearl Art and Craft Supply. As is the Lucky’s tradition, a side of bacon is sliced rather than a conventional ribbon.
Shoppers were greeted at the door with watermelons priced at just 98 cents while a bountiful array of colorful fresh fruits and vegetables awaited them inside the spacious store. In addition to the large selection of fruits and veggies, some bagged and some loose, the store has grains and seeds in bulk, fresh squeezed smoothies, standard grocery items, meat, dairy, health and beauty and a café for snacks, drinks and wine sampling. Encouraged to sip and stroll, the shopping carts at Lucky’s even have cup holders.
Officiating the event were co-founders Bo and Trish Sharon, whose love of good food, fair prices and the thought of giving back to the community brought them together when they attended culinary school.
Co-founder, Bo Sharon explained that about half of their produce is organic, but they haven’t forgotten price conscious shoppers who may want to select what they want to buy organic and what they may not. Accordingly, Lucky’s strives to stock non-organic varieties of whatever they carry in their organic line.
During this visit, we met Linda, a pleasant cashier from Colorado, whose job is to go from town to town for grand openings. This was her 26th. Here for two weeks, she leaves for Sarasota for their grand opening scheduled for the end of September.
Bo and Trish were very hands on. After the ribbon cutting Bo was walking the store interacting with customers and Trish could be seen greeting customers as she offered samples of delicious yellow cake with butter cream icing.
Lucky’s Brooke Buchanan had the pleasure of explaining the firm’s practice of giving back to the community, which they do in many ways:
Several times yearly the store selects a non-profit beneficiary of their Impact Day program where the non-profit receives 10% of the days sales. The first Impact Day for the Oakland Park store will be Sept. 12th. The Urban Farming Institute will create their Lucky’s Agritechnology Lab, an outdoor classroom at the UFI’s Oakland Park facility.
A group of non-profits are chosen quarterly for the store’s Bags for Change program. Shoppers who bring their own recyclable bags are given a wooden dime at checkout to deposit in the bin of the non-profit of their own choosing. Lucky’s converts the wooden dimes to real cash for the charities.
The initial Bags for Change charities are:
The Poverello Center’s partnership with the Thurgood Marshall Elementary School. Because so many children only get nutritious meals at school and go hungry on weekends, Poverello and Lucky’s will supply kids with bags of fresh fruits and veggies to take home on Fridays.
Broward has the dubious honor of having the nation’s second highest rate of newly diagnosed HIV cases. Latinos Salud will use the funds from their wooden dime donations to combat HIV and STD’s and to promote testing.
Donations to Healthy Mothers/Healthy Babies will work to improve fitness, nutrition and support a community garden.
Recipients of sizeable check contributions today were:
The Broward Partnership for the Homeless who will use the $3,000 for six commercial gas stoves for their kitchen
PACE Center for Girls who will use their $3,500 for laptops in their college and career readiness program
The Humanity Project, who will utilize their $3,500 to expand their anti-bullying program and two select area elementary schools