Health food stores were once a rarity. Limited in size and scope, health food stores were often difficult to find and the few that existed were often lacking in basic necessities in part because so few manufacturers produced foods and other products that met the required standard.
Today, there is a newfound emphasis on healthier eating and natural/green products in general and retailers have responded to the demands by increasing the availability of healthier foods and by adding health food sections to existing stores. But there is one large and growing chain of stores founded on good health that continues to expand its presence. The store is Austin- based Whole Foods Market and in just a few days, Whole Foods will expand with another Houston area location- this time, in the west suburb of Katy. I got the opportunity to attend a sneak peek event at the new Whole Foods Katy on Saturday, January 26, 2013, take a tour of the store, meet some of the personnel, take some pictures, sample some products, and learn more about this newest addition to the Whole Foods Market family, scheduled to open to the public on Wednesday, January 30, 2013 (see below for more info on the grand opening events). Here are some of the things I found out about the Houston area’s latest Whole Foods:
Where is this new store located?
Whole Foods Katy is located at 6601 South Fry Rd., Katy, TX. It is very close to Grand Parkway (99) and those who visit from the city of Houston can get here most quickly by driving west on I-10, then heading south on 99 to the Fry Road Exit. Once you exit, turn left, go underneath the highway, and you will quickly see the Whole Foods Market on the right, in a strip shopping area that also includes a World Market.
What are the hours of operation?
Whole Foods Market Katy is open seven days per week, from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. every day, including Sunday.
What can I expect at this newest Whole Foods?
Fans of the Whole Foods concept can expect more of the same- the same formula that has helped make Whole Foods so popular among those seeking healthier eating, greener cleaning, and natural personal care products. The store offers the usual departments found in most all Whole Foods Markets, including:
· Coffee & Tea
· Meat & Poultry
· Prepared Foods
· Whole Body
What about the beer?
Craft beer lovers will find much to like about the Whole Foods Market Katy. The beer selection, based on what I could see during the sneak peek tour, is a little less than that offered at the Sugar Land Whole Foods (keep in mind that my view on the tour was limited and the selection could change at any time regardless). However, it is still quite nice and it has a large bar area with multiple beer selections on tap, both for filling growlers and for enjoying as you shop.
When will the new store open to the public?
Whole Foods Market Katy is scheduled to open on Wednesday, January 30, 2013 with a full day of events. Here is a breakdown of times and festivities throughout the day:
7:00 a.m. to 7:15 a.m.- Katy Chamber of Commerce Ribbon Cutting Ceremony
7:15 a.m. to 7:30 a.m.- Seven Lakes Jazz Ensemble, Seven Lakes Cheerleaders, and Cinco Ranch Cheerleaders
7:30 a.m. to 8 a.m.- Bread Breaking Ceremony
8:00 a.m.- Store officially opens. Performance by Seven Lakes High School Jazz Ensemble, Seven Lakes High School Cheerleaders, and Cinco Ranch High School Cheerleaders.
9:00 a.m. to 11 a.m.- Face painting
11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.- Kids Club, Coloring & Introduction of Katy Store Mascot
3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.- Cinco Ranch High School Cheerleaders
4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.- Cinco Ranch High School Bravo Choir, Cinco High School Drumline, Seven Lakes High School Cheerleaders, and Cinco Ranch Cheerleaders
5:00 p.m.- Register Giveaway: Whole Trade Roses
5:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.- Brant Lee Croucher Band
The first 100 attendees will receive Whole Foods Market gift cards valued between $5 and $250. The store also plans to donate a portion of its sales on the opening day to five local charities.
Once the exhausting opening day comes to a close, Whole Foods Market Katy will settle into its normal routine, offering its fresh, natural, and organic foods and other items to this fast- growing area of west Houston.
Where can I go to get more information?
To find out more about this newest Whole Foods Market location, visit the Whole Foods Katy web page. The web site will fill you in on the different departments, the events, the Whole Foods mission, and more. Facebook users can add Whole Foods Market Houston to their “Likes” list and keep informed about all Houston area Whole Foods markets on a regular and timely basis.
What shall I do next?
Set aside some time this Wednesday, January 30, 2013 and pay a visit to this newest addition to the Whole Foods family. Fresh food, Earth- friendly products, a nice craft beer selection, and a day of entertainment await so mark your calendars and celebrate this grand opening in the Houston suburb of Katy.
Want to read more about the world’s greatest beverage? Visit Great Beer Now!
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