Albany, NY

Support the new South End Grocery store

Carol Durant
South End GroceryPhoto byCarol Durant

I visited the new South End Grocery Store located in the South End section of Albany, New York. My friend and I were excited to visit and support an important new endeavor. Interest was high, purchases were made and a positive experience was had by both of us.

Albany is the Capital of New York and was until the last week of 2022 lacking a downtown grocery store to serve the inhabitants of this neighborhood. Before the grand opening, citizens had to travel to uptown Albany or to Rensselaer County for an under two mile grocery store experience.

The address of the store is 106 South Pearl Street. It is a non profit grocery store and came to fruition via community partnerships helmed by Mr. Travon Jackson. Mr. Jackson is an inspirational and goal oriented entrepreneur who is the Executive Director of the African American Cultural Center of the Capital Region and president of BlueLight Development Group.

The grocery store occupies a building that was formerly a McDonald's. The fast food restaurant, a downtown mainstay in the city for almost thirty years, closed and left an open wound that symbolized the continued economic struggles that plagued the South End. Mr. Jackson and his partners have closed the wound by providing economic opportunities for local businesses such as area farmers and a walkable destination for an individual's immediate or long term food necessities.

Entering the building seems familiar but is indeed new. The interior design has an industrial cool vibe with its metallic blues and blackboard paint with chalk lettering. Patrons are able to greet the staff and watch their meals being prepared in the open kitchen. Food items such as vegetables and canned goods are displayed in vertical racks, wooden boxes and shelving units. Perishable items and frozen foods are located in refrigerated cases. Prepared food, such as breakfast sandwiches can be ordered at the front or back counter. Prices are posted and cash or credit cards are accepted payment methods. Plenty of parking for those who drive and the Capital District Transportation Authority (CDTA) bus stop is at the corner.

Community support is vital. Currently the hours of operation are 10:00am to 6:00pm. Stop in, bring a bag and make some purchases, donate at the website and spread the word. Congratulations to all.

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Writer, author, poet, playwright

Albany, NY

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