After five weeks of the grocery store being closed, Mt. Airy Weavers Way has gone to the dogs—in what many think is a good way.
The Mt. Airy Weavers Way grocery store at 559 Carpenter Lane has been closed since July 12 for renovations. Closures are almost unheard of in the cooperative community, according to general manager Glenn Bergman.
While the store is closed until August 31, the Co-op has set up a temporary store next door, offered shuttle rides to the Chestnut Hill store and thrown various shindigs to keep the community “village” mentality going.
“I think the idea behind doing events for the summer was to bring people shopping in the neighborhood to help support the other small businesses,” said Weavers Way event planner Laurie MacGregor. “There’s a bunch of businesses who’ve cropped up with the co-op being the original reason people came.”
MacGregor said the idea of a dog happy hour—otherwise known as a yappy hour or BYOD (bring your own dog)—was from other dog happy hours that gained popularity, such as the one at Trolley Car Diner & Café.
Cooperative officials thought a similar event might be a good way to get members acquainted with the new pet store.
Back in July, the pet store remained open while the wall between 608 and 610 Carpenter Lane was knocked out to combine the pet store with the new health and wellness store. When entering the combined pet and health and wellness stores, one must first go through a maze of vitamins and health products to get to dog food and toys.
MacGregor said those attending the dog happy hours have enjoyed the combination of the two stores.
“When you walk in through the health and wellness store, it’s like an aroma therapy bath…to combat the pet store smell,” she said.
Although the dog happy hour is still gaining popularity, MacGregor said other events—most of which involve live music and a food truck—have drawn in large crowds not typical to a normal summer in the Mt. Airy Village.
“It’s definitely way more people coming out at specific times,” she said, adding that most have been satisfied with the pop-up store as well. “They have a shuttle that goes up to [the] Chestnut Hill [store and] most people who I’ve talked to haven’t felt they need to go up there.”
Fran Thomas, who brought her three shih tzus to the dog happy hour, said she thinks Weavers Way should continue to put on lavish events even when the grocery store is up and running.
“I think it’s a fabulous idea,” she said. “They’re part of the community, and the more you bring the community in for events like this the people who don’t shop at Weavers Way and don’t know it begin to shop here.”
The dog happy hour will continue at the Weaves Way pet store every Wednesday in August from 5 to 8 p.m. There will be samples of local beer (for people), as well as food sold at the co-op.
Because next week is also the Mt. Airy Night Market, MacGregor said, the Foo Truck, which sells Asian street food, will not be attending like usual. There will also be no pet trainer or food representative present at the Carpenter Lane event.
But she promises it’ll still be a good time.