ShareThis Page

Ferri's IGA boosted by closing of McGinnis Sisters specialty grocery

Dillon Carr
| Thursday, March 8, 2018, 2:21 p.m.

The loss of one small independent grocery store has been a gain for another in the area.

Business has been booming at Ferri's IGA Supermarket since the owners of McGinnis Sisters Special Food Store nearby in Monroeville announced they were closing this month.

“We ran out of ground meat on Tuesday — that's usually our slowest day,” Gary Silvestri, Ferri's store manager, said last week. “Business has definitely picked up.”

Silvestri said he is planning to carry some of the speciality items the McGinnis Sisters store used to sell.

McGinnis Sisters announced in February that it was closing its last two stores in Monroeville and Brentwood. Markdown sales that started this month have cleared most of the aisles and shelves in the Monroeville store. The only items left late last week were dried goods and some refrigerated drinks.

“The first items to go … were the meats, seafood, the deli, the bakery and produce,” said Carl Pursh, the store's director of meat and seafood.

The few customers roaming the aisles said they're not sure where they'll go when their favorite store closes for good. The store will remain open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. until all the food is gone, Pursh said.

Michele Puzzanchera said that even before moving to Monroeville two years ago, she would make the drive from Churchill to shop at the market offering speciality foods before they became the rage. But now that might change.

“I don't know where I'll go. I guess I'll make the drive to Trader Joe's and the Strip,” Puzzanchera said.

Elizabeth Lee said she used to shop at stores like Trader Joe's and Costco when she lived in the Chicago area. Lee moved to Monroeville with her wife and two children eight months ago.

“I'm going to have to hit up Google and see what's around here,” she said.

The company was started in Baldwin 71 years ago by Elwood McGinnis. The most recent owners — McGinnis sisters, Noreen Campbell, Sharon Young and Bonnie Vello — said competition from large stores forced them to rethink plans to pass the business on to the next generation of the family. The sisters closed a third store in Mars in January.

Chris Mascaro, 59, has worked and shopped at McGinnis Sisters in Monroeville for 40 years. The market's deli team leader said she started as a cashier working part time. “It's kind of hard, you know? It's very sad,” she said.

Dillon Carr is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at 412-871-2325, or via Twitter @dillonswriting.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.

click me