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The Social: Whole Foods Upper Arlington

by Maureen McCabe on March 5, 2013

Whole Foods: The Social

Upper Arlington, Ohio Whole Foods Market

The Whole Foods Market in Upper Arlington is re-opening tomorrow, March 6, 2013. Or maybe when you raze a business and rebuild it is not a re-opening. Whole Foods Market  is at 1555 W. Lane Ave Upper Arlington, Ohio 43221, the old Wild Oats Store, but not really.

A Facebook event for the grand opening of the Upper Arlington store tomorrow says:

“We are thrilled to welcome you to our new Upper Arlington store and are grateful to be a part of this community! Join us the morning of Wednesday, March 6 for our bread-breaking at 9:45 am and opening ceremony. Throughout the week enjoy music, food samples, and meeting the talented team members at your new neighborhood Whole Foods Market.”

The real estate connection on Facebook

I got a sneak peek on Monday, March 4, 2013. I seldom look at the HER Realtors business page on Facebook but I did Monday morning and read a February 27 post from Angel Gravitt Schneider on the HER Realtors Facebook wall.

Facebook HER posts by others

The top post by an “Other” read:

“Invitation to HER Fans: You’re invited to a preview event at the new Whole Foods Market on Lane Avenue on 3/3 and 3/4. $5 suggested donation goes to Mid-OH Food bank and gets you in the door for a bunch of freebies! Love to see you there!   RSVP here: http://upperarlington.wholefoodsrsvp.com/ ”

And I did!

A sneak peek of Whole Foods Upper Arlington

Employees from Cincinnati Whole Foods stores conducted the sneak peek tours along with an employee from the marketing department.  The employees of the Upper Arlington store were busy preparing for Wednesday morning.

The produce that was out on Monday during the sneak peek of the store was gorgeous. Sneak peek participants sampled pineapple in the produce department.

The bulk department with self-service beans, nuts, popcorn, grains, oils, vinegar, spices and more. The bulk department has a “food coach” to help customers with how to use foods. In addition the Whole Foods store in Upper Arlington will have a dietician. If customers need to talk to a dietician about special needs, diabetic cooking, vegetarian cooking, gluten-free foods, etc. There is an employee for that.

The sneak peek samplers got smoked salmon in the fish department. You can’t help but love a store that calls the employees of the fish department “fish mongers.”

An employee explained “grocery” and the 365 brand. The tour included an introduction to the cheese department, the beer and wine department, the meat department, the bakery. The prepared foods area is huge and next to “The Social.”  With self-service touch screen ordering and quick check out there is a mix of technology and interaction with the businesses’ employees.   Shoppers can order food to go the old fashioned way too, talking to employees.

Upper Arlington, Ohio Whole Foods Market

The Social: a pub and coffee bar that serves food

The employee from Cinci who introduced us to “The Social” on the north-west corner of the building on Lane Avenue described it much like the ‘Husband Day Care Center’ photo a friend shared on Facebook today. The Facebook photo shows two men standing outside a bar with a sign in the window that reads:

Husband Day Care Center

Need time to relax?
Need time to yourself?
Want to go shopping?

Leave your husband with us. We’ll look after him for you. You only pay for his drinks”

Not to be sexist, there are many men who love to cook, so maybe it’s the wife who will park herself in “The Social.”  The Social  opens at 7 AM and with a separate entrance this pub / coffee shop could be a great place to stop and grab coffee and breakfast for neighborhoods people.

The Whole Food Upper Arlington grocery carts also have drink holders, making food shopping more social.  The Social will have “Growlers” a new concept for me.  Beer drinkers will know what that means.  You can buy a bottle of wine at the store, drink a glass while you shop and the Upper Arlington Whole Foods Market employees can re-seal it for you too.

Does size matter….

The Upper Arlington Whole Foods Market  is not as huge as the Dublin area store on Dublin- Granville Road, just east of Sawmill Road. I read somewhere that the Columbus Whole Foods at 3670 W. Dublin-Granville Road, Columbus, Ohio 43235 ranks as one of the biggest Whole Foods stores in the country or did.  The Columbus (Dublin-Granville Road location) Whole Foods market is nearly 100,000 square feet?   EDIT It’s only 75,000! Still much bigger than the Upper Arlington, Whole Foods Market!  The new Whole Foods Market in Upper Arlington is bigger than the Upper Arlington store acquired in 2007 when Whole Foods acquired the Wild Oats chain. Whole Foods Upper Arlington camped out at 1649 W. Lane Ave, Upper Arlington, Ohio 43221 while they razed the old store at 1555 W. Lane Avenue and rebuilt. I believe the temporary store in the mall was less than 10,000 square feet. The store opening tomorrow in Upper Arlington is about 35,0000 feet.   If felt bigger than that to me, but the Whole Foods Upper Arlington Market felt  comfortable.

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