Kansas City, KS

Kansas City's Northland: Balls Food Stores is bringing a Price Chopper to the former Hy-Vee location later this year

CJ Coombs

It has been announced the empty space which once contained a busy Hy-Vee grocery store near North Oak Trafficway and Englewood in Kansas City's Northland will be filled with a Price Chopper later this year.

Residents and people working near the Creekwood Commons Shopping Center were disappointed when all of a sudden, the Hy-Vee location was empty. Teachers who worked nearby could buzz over there during their lunch hour. Anyone could go grab a salad during lunch or make a quick stop after work on the way home.

The 77,000-square-foot store will include “substantial upgrades” in the following departments: meat, seafood, bakery, delicatessen, grocery, liquor and floral .... (Source.)

The Ball's Food Store chains include the following:

  • Hen House
  • Price Chopper (and those Tippin Pies!)
  • Sun Fresh
  • Payless Discount Foods

The Ball family

The Ball family is one of four local families owning Price Choppers in Kansas City. It's a three-generation family operation that began with Sidney and Mollie Ball in the 1920s. They decided to pursue a store option that would meet the needs of families. The second generation was pursued by Fred Ball, and the third generation is steered by David Ball.

Mollie's father and brothers had experience with owning a grocery store.

Sidney and Mollie scraped together $1,000 in 1923 for a building on the corner of 16th and Stewart Streets in Kansas City, Kansas. (Source.)

Sidney and Mollie opened another store after the Depression at 21st Street and Quindaro Boulevard. Although they had a cash-and-carry system, if customers paid in cash, they could receive a discount.

When their son, Fred, was a young boy, his responsibility was to keep the potato bin full. During World War II, Mollie was making take-home dinners. In 1948, the Balls opened a third store at 34th Street and State Line Road. It was "Kansas City's first large-scale supermarket."

When their son, Fred, graduated from college in 1956, another store was opened. Fred would go on to become President of the Ball's Food Stores during the mid-1960s. Interestingly, even when Mollie was in her 80s, she was still coming to work.

The Ball family legacy continues. The Northlanders in Kansas City most likely are looking forward to the big empty building being filled with a grocery store to meet their needs.

Thanks for reading!

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Multi-genre writer and indie author with a BA in Eng Journalism & Creative Writing. My working career has been in law firms. Thinker, giver, and lover of life and retired early to be a writer. Born into Air Force service life, life has taken me to Louisiana, Idaho, Kauai, Nebraska, South Dakota, and Missouri. I love family, art, reading, history, true crime, travel, and research.

Kansas City, MO

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