Typically when a store advertises a massive sale on all items, shoppers are pleased to hear the news. Unfortunately, for customers of Mike's IGA supermarket in the small Banksville shopping center on North Street, the sign advertising "30 percent off everything" has a more sobering message the store will be closing.
"It surprised me because they've been here for 42 years, but it's a tough area for any business," said Sergio Shipor, an employee at A Touch of Nature Natural Food Stores that is next to IGA.
The owner began speaking about the closure then declined any further questions. However, customers and local proprietors expressed their sadness at the upcoming close.
"He was the major pull here," said Virginia Barrett, owner of the nearby Fine Arts Gallery. "All of Banksville that didn't want to go to big chains went there because they had personal service and their product was good."
One customer shopping for groceries at IGA seemed to share that sentiment. "They won't allow a chain in there will they? Hopefully Banksville won't let that happen," she said.
Shipor had a different feeling on what may replace IGA. "I think personally, though, it would be better to put a big chain in there because it would attract more customers," he said.
Combined with the sale, the closing of IGA seems to be attracting neighborhood attention. One customer walking out of the store who stopped into Barrett's gallery said she was surprised to hear the store was closing. "I went in there for the New York Times and came out with all this," she said holding up several plastic IGA bags.
"The people who have lived here a long time will miss him," said Barrett.
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