VIC’S IGA GOES BELLY UP
Vic’s IGA, the supermarket with the zig zag roofline that anchors the South Hills Shopping Center, has filed Chapter 7 bankruptcy and closed its doors.
Vic’s Market, which was originally a Jumbo Market designed by architect Sooky Lee back in 1968, has seen better days.
When I went by the tattered old market, the parking lot was empty, the trash cans were overfilled with garbage, and the two trees in the big blue pots were dead.
The big red and worn Vic’s sign had some damage that was being held together with duct tape. The “Under New Management” banner was still up, too. It was a sad scene.
Potential shoppers were trickling by asking, “Is Vic’s closed?”
Folks stopping by told me things like, “I knew something was up when the shelves were nearly empty.”
Another patron said, “the store used to be fully stocked. You go in there now, and you don’t know what you’re gonna get.”
Meat shouldn’t be green and lettuce shouldn’t be brown.
Sometimes that is what customers would get. A lot of the items were past the “best if sold by” date.
Vendors were stopping by the shuttered market, too. Donald Miller, who boasted he had 51 years in the grocery business, said, “I saw it coming. Bottom line. They didn’t know how to run a grocery store.”
Miller, who works for Acosta Sales and Marketing added, “If the right person comes along, they could make a go of this store.”
Shoppers were trickling into the vast parking lot and peeking in the door that had the “Hometown Pride” sticker on it when they found out about the store closure.
One patron asked, “Is it closed for good?”
Another person added, “I’m not surprised.”
Vic’s customers thought something was up and would ask the owner, who’s first name is Kumar, “What’s going on?” Kumar would tell people they were “remodeling and waiting for new equipment to come in.”
Bob Montenegro was peeking in the store window when he said, “I’ve been coming here for years, all the old employees are gone.” He added, “the last couple of months I stopped coming here because they had no bread or milk”.
The closing of the Vic’s also effects the two businesses that were sub leasing space from the owner; Beijing Wok and Good Eats Southern BBQ. An employee at the Beijing Wok was busy packing up bags of rice, peas and carrots and didn’t want to talk about the store closing. They were in a hurry moving their products out before the creditors came.
Eric McFadden, the owner of Good Eats Southern Bar-B-B-Q said, “On Monday, the doors were locked and foamed; I couldn’t get into my own business.”
Eric said, “I knew something was going on.” The owner had told him and everybody else they were planning a remodel of the store and that was the reason for the half-empty shelves.
While I spoke to Eric, his business partner Dawn Sirstad was running out to rent a U-Haul truck. They were in a hurry to move out all their restaurant equipment before the doors were locked and foamed again.
McFadden was annoyed at the situation but was already making calls to move Good Eats BBQ to a nearby location.
Good Eats BBQ, which gets rave reviews on Yelp for their old fashioned comfort food, may move into the empty Brick Oven Pizza building located on the right side of the shopping center.
His goal is to open very soon and have “The Big Mama Grill,” BBQ-ing ribs outside the joint. He is currently in negotiations with the property management company which also manages Vic’s and the entire right side of the shopping center.
Good Eats would give some life to that side of the shopping center which recently lost Erawan Thai Restaurant. Erawan moved over to Freeport Boulevard.
Vic’s Market closing leaves a big hole in the historic South Hills shopping center. Hopefully, a higher quality market can move in while keeping the original architecture of the building intact.
Camellia Waldorf plans move to CP Huntington campus
Camellia Waldorf School, a private Waldorf elementary on Freeport Boulevard, is currently looking to move on over to the closed down CP Huntington public school campus in the Brentwood neighborhood.
Camellia Waldorf has been at the current site on Freeport Boulevard for 25 years. They started out by renting one room from the storefront and that was their kindergarten. They have grown over the years to include a toddler program through eighth grade.
According to school administrator Ardyth Sokolor, “It was never intended to be a long term site, but it has worked nicely. At this point, it’s just not large enough.”
They are very interested in moving to the former CP Huntington campus and are working with the Sacramento City Unified School District to get it finalized. “(It’s) just a matter of process,” Sokolor said.
They are very interested in increasing their enrollment, but the space they are currently in is just not big enough.
The classrooms are small and they need more space for things like a woodworking studio, art space, and a strings room for an instrumental music program.
“We do more space sharing than we really would like,” Sokolar said.
“Our teachers want larger classrooms because one of the things that is unique about a Waldorf education is the children aren’t just sitting at their desks doing worksheets. They integrate a lot of movement and games and outdoor space and it would be wonderful to have more room.”
The grounds at the current site are all about the outdoors and nature. The children help to take care of the animals and they also have chores. The development of a strong will and work ethic is very important to a Waldorf education.
They use different types of play structures which means they’ll have to transform the CP Huntington school grounds from a mainstream public school to a Waldorf private school.
That’s where the permits and red tape come into play.
Camellia Waldorf has made efforts to inform parents of their proposed site relocation. They’ve had quite a few parent education offerings to let the parents know why they are interested in moving and why they think CP Hunnington works well for them.
They have also reached out to the Brentwood Neighborhood by canvassing the neighborhood and have had members of the Brentwood Neighborhood Association tour the campus and learn what a Waldorf education is all about.
“We also like the idea of being in a neighborhood instead of a shopping center. Community is an important part of who we are and what our parents are looking for and what we instill in our children. It’s very attractive to us to be in more of a community setting like that,” Sokolor said.
What will happen to the building and area Camellia Waldorf will be vacating?
Over the Fence has learned there have been some preliminary discussions to house a Safe Ground type facility on the 4.6-acre Sacramento City nursery once Camellia Waldorf relocates to the CP Huntington site. Stay tuned.
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