As you already know, your Co-op staff has been busy doing the research necessary to determine whether or not we should locate a third store in the current location of Pierce’s Northside Market. I’m pleased to announce that the Board has accepted the recommendation of the Third Store Project Team. Northside, here we come! If you are interested, there are a few different ways for Owners (and prospective Owners) to get involved.
Community Informational Meetings
We want to hear from you, your neighbors, and anyone else you know who may be planning to shop the third store. Interested to hear our plans and see the layout? Want to tell us what products you would like to see? Interested in employment with the Co-op or purchasing a bond to support the third store? Want to learn how to run for a seat on our board of directors or how to give the gift of Co-op Ownership? Come to one of our community informational meetings to find out more! Information about the meetings and locations on the northside will be posted on our website at www.willystreet.coop/events, on social media, and in our next Reader.
Owner Bond Drive
Interested in providing financial support for the new store? Consider purchasing an Owner Bond. Loaning the Co-op money in support of our growth is a tradition going all the way back to 1974, when we used Owner Bonds to open our first location and also to support the openings of Willy East and Willy West.
Owner Bonds are a great way to lend support to the Co-op’s expansion and participate in your Co-op’s economics. Each Owner Bond you purchase shows your support and contributes to your Co-op’s success.
Give the Gift of Ownership
The community can support our thirdstore by helping others become Owners, which helps your Co-op leverage cash and debts. Simply contact or stop by Customer Service at East or West and we will create a gift card in the amount of equity you would like to give. You may make their first payment or pay in-full, it’s up to you how much to invest. We’ll give you the gift card and a packet that includes a letter explaining how to sign up for Ownership, a blank Fair Share contract, an Ownership brochure, and information on the Access Discount. The recipient of your gift will have all they need to easily sign-up for Ownership the next time (or first time!) they shop. New Owners who demonstrate financial eligibility may sign up for the Access Discount Program right away, and use it to take a free class and extend their limited food budgets even further. Purchasing someone’s first equity payment or a fully invested Ownership will make a great gift with lasting value for both your new Owner friend and your Co-op.
Timeline To Willy North
- Mid-May: We begin hosting community meetings around the north side.
- June 1st: Willy Street Co-op gains access to 2817 North Sherman Avenue, begins construction at the new Willy North.
- Mid-to-Late Summer: Open store to customers.
- Fall: Grand opening event.
Other Ways to Get Involved
Willy East Concrete Work
A small section of concrete sidewalk located at the front entrance of Willy East needs to be replaced. This work is scheduled for the week of May 23rd, starting Monday, and can be done with minimal disruption for customers. It may be a bit noisy and dusty for the day and a half of work.
Bon Voyage, Mike
Mike Byrne, Willy West Store Manager, is leaving our Co-op after nearly six years of service and moving on to another one! Mike has accepted a position as the Store Manager of the People’s Food Co-op located in La Crosse, Wisconsin. Thank you, Mike, and best wishes.