Swift as a summer breeze, a new Lakewinds has come to town. A new chapter in healthy eating and co-op community began today. Richfield has been a co-op free zone for far too long.
Opening Weekend Store Specials
Lakewinds Food Co-Op Richfield started things off right. A series of outdoor events along with in-store specials, samples and freebies made for a memorable shopping trip. What can be better than free cheese? The generous slabs of Parmesan-like hard cheese made a nice take home gift.
The crowd was impressed. In the deli section, I overheard observations like, “Everything looks so mouthwatering.”
The deli had more tempting salads than I had time to try. The staff was very accommodating, helpful and friendly. They didn’t seem to mind doling out samples from the caverns of the deep rimmed deli case. I bought more as a result of their attentive patience. The chili lime quinoa salad won me over with a refreshing citrus and smoky spiced punch. The creamy turkey artichoke salad flecked with aromatic dill made an ideal light lunch.
Also amazing was how large the building felt even with a thick, right on your heels, opening day crowd. The parking lot was full at 9 a.m. No small feat for a first day. Still, the place is welcoming with small touches for everyone and offered much more than the average grocery store. Outdoor tables and chairs were available outside and inside too. Plenty of bike racks are situated around the building. Bowls of fresh water were situated outside for thirsty dogs.
And Butterflies Are Free
A butterfly release kicked off the grand opening on Saturday morning. “We decided a typical ribbon cutting was way too boring,“ proclaimed general manager Dale Woodbeck.
The crowd was won over by the pro-pollinator, environmentally friendly alternative to balloons. All eyes were on the monarchs and painted ladies.
The butterflies came in a pair of carefully sealed boxes from the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. With a turn of the lid on each container the butterflies flittered away vanishing like specs of dust into the clouded sky. A few butterflies returned for a glorious moment to flutter on an outstretched cheering hand. The butterflies were breathtaking and symbolic. In many cultures butterflies are associated with hope and change.
Location and Hours
Lakewinds Food Co-Op Richfield is located at 6420 Lyndale Ave. S., Richfield, MN 55423; (612) 814-8000. Hours are 7 a.m. – 9 p.m. Monday-Saturday and 7 a.m. – 9 p.m. on Sunday.