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Pacific Market Closes After Weeks Without Food Shipment

Shoppers throughout the day Sunday found only a sign notifying them of the closure.

The Rohnert Park Pacific Market is officially closed.

Rick Mohar, a head clerk with Pacific Market in Santa Rosa, confirmed the news Sunday morning. He said it's only the Rohnert Park branch that's closing.

A local manager working Sunday morning, who declined to give his name, said it's "been a while since we received a shipment."

"It's tough enough to be here and have to go through what we have to go through. It's not easy to do," he said.

Vice Mayor Jake Mackenzie said he and his wife Barbara noticed the shelves going empty over the last couple weeks. 

"I went over this morning to get some food, and found the doors locked with a notice on the door," Mackenzie said. 

That's a story that was repeated throughout the day on Sunday, as would-be shoppers approached the store, and left confused. 

"I'm really disappointed, this store been such a convenience for us," said Danny Guerrero, who lives in D Section. "We come here to grab dinner, and we can walk if we want to. Now we have to go all the way across town."

Tom Hoopler echoed Guerrero's feelings about the closure.

"This is such a bummer, I've been coming here since I was a kid when it was Roger Wilco," Hoopler said. "I wish they'd given us more notice."

"I've been coming here for 17 years — I think it's the state of the economy," said Dar Kennedy, who used to work at Pacific Market. "I was just in here yesterday and I asked how come the shelves are so bare, and they were all secretive about it. I wish they'd been more upfront."

Rohnert Park residents will have one less local store to choose from; and for people who live in the northern neighborhoods, the choice to walk or bike instead of drive will likely be harder.

"It's a real tragedy ... for those of us who live in northern Rohnert Park; it's bad for the environment, bad for economic reasons and it's going to have a detrimental effect on other businesses in Mountain Shadows Plaza," Mackenzie said. 

Local business owners say the aftermath of Pacific Market's closure hasn't materialized yet, as it just happened Sunday morning.

"I don't if it'll make that much of a difference," said Rich Quirk, co-owner of Big Daddy's Diner. "But people do sometimes stop here before or after they shop."

Yolanda Ramirez, the manager of Straw Hat Pizza, said she thinks it'll definitely take business away.

"It brings traffic," Ramirez said.

"I think it's going to be a big impact," said Lilly Merino, 23, who also works at Straw Hat. "And my family has been local buyers there since I was a kid."

As for alternatives, there are others such as Safeway and Raley's in Rohnert Park. But many shoppers on Sunday said they came to Pacific Market to support local businesses.

"Barbara and I felt Pacific Market was locally owned and it supported local producers. I'd rather shop in Rohnert Park but Oliver's is going to be a prime choice for me," he added.

The sign on the door Sunday read: "Effective Sunday, Feb. 20, the Rohnert Park Pacific Market is closed for business. We appreciate your patronage over the years. We hope you will continue to shop our Sebastopol and Santa Rosa locations."

Editor's note: With Pacific Market's closure, eight of the 22 storefronts in Mountain Shadows Plaza now sit empty. Read the story from our ongoing package about the city's vacant properties . 

Angela Hart February 20, 2011 at 11:46 PM
Thanks for your comments. I personally, used to bike there and often get produce. Their sandwiches are/were also amazing. Too bad.
tim harrison February 21, 2011 at 01:13 AM
And the council is letting Walmart expand their grocery section. This will effect the other grocery stores in the area and people will continue to lose jobs.
Dan Bresee February 21, 2011 at 07:27 PM
I have gone out to the Fresh & Easy website. Fresh and Easy is looking for new locations to open. I have heard good things about them ... they are apparently similar to Trader Joes... They have a link there to submit possible new site locations... So I gave them a heads up to the Pacific Market location... hope they look into it. If you want to send in the same sort of message to them http://www.freshandeasy.com/Default.aspx is the website.. and click on WHERE WE ARE link on that page.
Tom O'Doul February 23, 2011 at 01:29 AM
I'm so sorry to see Pacific Market close. Pacific Market (aka Roger Wilco) was the hometown grocery store for so many years. I guess it is just a sign of the times. The neighborhood market is just not a part of our society today. What a shame. I will not shop at the "big box" stores. It is too bad that the wonderful employees at Pacific Market may be out of a job. I wish them all the best and thank them for the great service. No one will be able to give the service we received at Pacific Market. Thanks!!
sk May 15, 2012 at 04:34 AM
Agreed, Tim. Walmart's expansion will affect our local small businesses. It's sad to see this store close as this will most certainly have an effect on the local economy and jobs.

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