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Whole Foods Market all about families

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From free apples, oranges and bananas for the youngsters to book readings teaching them about food, Whole Foods Market Highland Village is all about families.

Slated to open at 8 a.m. on Sept. 10, Whole Foods Market will celebrate the event beginning at 7:30 a.m. with free coffee and pastries, live music and other surprises at the northwest corner of FM 407 and FM 2499.

The store is planning a smorgasbord of family-style events from special events for the younger set like food contests and photos to demonstrations on food preparation such as fish cutting and concierge services for those who need a little extra help in their busy lives.

“When you walk into a Whole Foods, we try to create an atmosphere that’s completely different from every other,” said Scott Wilcox, team leader at the store during the Highland Village Business Association luncheon Tuesday at 9 Social.

The 43,500-square-foot store will include a mezzanine level, seating for 150 people, sofas, banquet seating and an indoor play area for youngsters.

Bulk candy will be available in “Candy World,” a massage station is included and a sausage area will allow residents to watch the daily sausage-making, Wilcox said. In the produce department, local vendors will offer their produce. An area for hanging bananas is also planned.

“We try to make our stores fit into the neighborhood,” he said.

About 170 employees will offer everything from health food selection guidance to concierge services that allow residents to submit their grocery lists and have the food ready for them when they drop by. Even delivery service is available to homes and offices. Pre-packaged meals, already-prepared meals and in-house dining will be available. The store includes wood-fired pizzas that can be made on-site to specifications as well as a made-to-order sushi station, a taco bar and a sandwich station. A large salad bar with organic vegetables and an 18-well soup station is also planned. The store will include a bar available for adults during the day and evenings. A coffee bar will open at 7 a.m. and close at 10 p.m.

Whole Foods Market is committed to giving back to the community by setting aside a percentage of net profits to give to area nonprofits each quarter, according to Sally Roberts, the marketing team leader.

“That, for me, is the most special part of my job, getting to call someone up and ask them if we can contribute to them,” Roberts said.

For the opening, Whole Foods Market Highland Village will provide 1 percent of net profits from the day to each of five local nonprofits including the Officer Survivor’s Fund, Lewisville Independent School District Education Foundation, Studio B Performing Arts Center, Children’s Advocacy Center of Denton County and the Humane Society of Flower Mound. Representatives of the five nonprofits will also be in the store on opening day to mingle with visitors. Each quarter, the Whole Foods Market plans a community giving day offering 5 percent of net profits to nonprofit organizations.

During a question and answer period, some queried about whether there would be enough parking available.

Highland Village City Manager Mike Leavitt said the plans outline 177 spaces directly in front of the new business with an estimated 1,900 parking spaces in the center. Many existing cars belong to employees, who will be asked to park elsewhere, Leavitt said, adding that parking likely will be constantly revolving throughout the first day.

Wilcox, who is originally from South Dakota, told the crowd he began working in The Shops of Highland Village area in 2003. Impressed with the community, he said “it felt right, it felt safe.”

Married with two daughters, ages 7 and 11, Wilcox said he understands the family values of the area and brings that understanding to his position at the new store.

“It’s a tremendous honor and I hope I can help serve the community very well,” he said.

 

Pictured above from left to right are Highland Village Council Member Fred Busche, Highland Village City Manager Mike Leavitt, Highland Village Mayor Charlotte Wilcox, Highland Village Business Association staff including Lori Wright and Laurie Mullens, Whole Foods Market Highland Village Marketing Team Leader Sally Roberts, Whole foods Market Dallas Media and Community Relations Manager Karen Lukin, Whole Foods Market Highland Village Team Leader Scott Wilcox and Highland Village Police Department Business Liaison Corporal David Harney.{jcomments on}

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