Tyndall loses grocery store for second time in less than a year

Published: Jan. 31, 2018 at 6:43 PM CST
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The Cash Smart grocery store in Tyndall closed its doors on Wednesday.

Last March, grocery stores in the communities of Tyndall, Tripp and Scotland closed unexpectedly, but were purchased by a new owner and re-opened in about a month.

In December, the owner said he was hardly turning a profit and would close the stores in Tyndall and Tripp on Jan. 31.

Communities members took their last shopping trips on Wednesday and were devastated to lose their grocery store again.

"From everything we're finding out it's number two on the list for keeping towns thriving," Joe Kostal, who lives south of town, said. "You've gotta have a grocery store."

"It's bad, we've got enough places that are not in business and we don't want this to look like a ghost town," Elsie Osinger, who lives in Tyndall, said.

They say, the closure is going to hurt.

"It's just going to hurt the whole town, it really is sad to see our store close," Margie Heisinger, also from Tyndall, said. "And you get to know the people -- the employees -- you get to know them and you're gonna miss them."

The store shelves were emptier than they'd been in months and locals took advantage, picking up most items at a discount before they won't be able to get their necessities just around the corner.

Osinger got Kool-Aid, ice cream bars and cereal. Heisinger said she got cat food, milk and meat.

While no one can pinpoint exactly why the Corner Grocery, then Cash Smart, couldn't turn a profit ... they all agree ...

"A town like Tyndall, we need a grocery store," Kostal said. "We need a full grocery store, one that does a deli, all that stuff."

And that's exactly what they're going to get.

"It's a local group, nine people, they put in $35,000 a piece and we raised $307,000," Ron Wagner, President of the Tyndall Community Development Foundation said.

Those community members formed a group called Tyndall Marketing, LLC. They're hoping to purchase the Cash Smart store.

"We'll clean up the store really well, do the fixing we need to do and hopefully in a month, six weeks we can be back open again," Kostal said.

"And if we don't buy this one, we'll build one," Wagner said. "We do have a vision hopefully, we're on 'Plan D' but we're gonna get it done."

Wagner said if they have to build a new store they will likely need additional investors.

The group's vision will include some big changes.

"We gotta get back to the old grocery store, not a convenience store, we need the meats, we need the deli, we need the service where you not only sack the groceries, we're gonna have delivery in town," Wagner said.

"We're looking to make a few improvements and get it so we have a good grocery store for the citizens of Tyndall ... and surrounding areas," Kostal said. "I don't want to limit it because we want all the business we can get."

KSFY News reached out to officials in Tripp to see if anyone in that community had plans to try to keep a grocery store in town, but we haven't heard back yet.

The Cash Smart store in Scotland will remain open for now.

Country Ford in Tyndall will again provide rides to anyone who needs them to grocery stores in Avon and Springfield until the new store opens.