Looming Wintry Weather, Holiday Influence Shopping

November 25, 2013

The familiar sights and sounds of a grocery trip filled Whole Food Market in Charlottesville Monday night. Store employees say this is the busiest week of the year, as people get all the ingredients needed to prepare their Thanksgiving feasts.

But this year, the aisles are expected to be a little more crowded during the days leading up to Turkey Day because of the wintry weather forecast.

"It puts people into a little bit of a frenzy, stocking up on their milk, their eggs and the staples," said Damon Hopkins, prepared foods supervisor. "We've seen a lot more foot traffic because of the weather, but also Thanksgiving."

Barry Thomas of Albemarle County isn't concerned about stocking his pantry ahead of any potentially dicey weather. His shopping list Monday featured two cakes for Thanksgiving -- not any staples like many others' did.

"They're out here buying milk and stuff. Me, I didn't come here because of the crummy weather. I always have a stockpile of things," said Thomas.

Whether it's because of the weather or for a Thanksgiving meal, many agreed food is a powerful way to pull people indoors.

"People, in their busy lives nowadays, have gotten away from spending that family time. It's all about fast and convenient, so I think it's an opportunity for people to gather around a table and spend that quality time with their family," said Hopkins.

Hopkins says he expects Wednesday to be the busiest day for the store. Whole Foods will be open until 4 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day.

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