SEARCY, Ark. — In a last-ditch effort, the Searcy community is pushing to save a neighborhood grocery store.
The only Kroger in the city is set to close on May 1st after almost 50 years in business.
Since 1975, Kroger on East Race Avenue has been a neighborhood staple. Whether you’re stopping in for a few things like Ashley Taylor or grabbing groceries for a full meal like Tony Haynes, the store means a lot to all who live nearby.
“Maybe twice a day, sometimes every other day but I go at least three or four times a week,” Taylor said.
“Get out of church go right there, get whatever we need for Sunday dinner and right back to the house,” Haynes said.
According to a press release, Kroger will close its doors May 1st after poor performance and struggling sales for nearly a decade.
“It’s going to be a big loss especially for this area right here. I’m going to miss it myself I really am,” Haynes said.
Before that happens, the community is coming together to see if they can somehow save it.
“It’s very convenient for the people that live here,” Taylor said.
Taylor and hundreds of others have signed a petition and written letters to Kroger asking them to reconsider. So far, they have yet to see it make a difference.
“I went over this morning to get some things and the shelves are bare,” Haynes said.
Even still, they have faith as more people sign on the dotted line, the doors will stay open.
“I just pray it all works out for the good,” Haynes said.
When asked about the efforts to keep the store open, a spokesperson for Kroger shared the following company statement:
“Closing a store is a difficult decision that we take very seriously. This store’s low financial returns made it impossible to continue to operate while still upholding our low-price commitment to our customers. We appreciate the Searcy, Arkansas community and we’ve seen their support recently with the announcement of the store closure. Unfortunately, after evaluating our stores, we made the tough decision to close due to struggling sales for nearly a decade.”