Trader Joe’s Winston-Salem Grand Opening!

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Live from the Grand Opening

Trader Joe's Grand Opening in Winston-Salem, NC10/26/12 – Trader Joe’s opened at 8AM this morning to the enthusiastic cheers of a long line of dedicated Trader Joe’s fans (pictured are Tari and Shawn, with Susan Morris taking the photo; the very first three to arrive!). The first crowds in the door would be greeted by Hawaiian shirt toting, Trader Joe’s coffee-fueled employees, handed a lei and a free Trader Joe’s grocery bag.

Trader Joe's Winston-Salem mural post card

And then the stampede would begin to grab your favorite Trader Joe’s product before the shelves would empty. According to managers, they prepared for this opening with a heavy back stock of product, and we could already see shelves being refilled as we walked down the aisles.

Were You There? Share Your Experience

First Trader Joe's Fans get Leis and Free BagsWere you one of the lucky few who got to stand in line at the crack of dawn (or maybe you rolled in later to beat the crowds) and finally shop at a Trader Joe’s that’s not an hours drive away? If so, what was your experience? And what did you buy? Did you find all your old TJ’s favorites, or were there some new goodies you decided to explore? Please use our comment form below to share your story with us and our readers.

Grand Opening Set for October 26, 2012

Trader Joe's Grand opening ThruwayUpdate 10/19/12 – The Grand Opening is set for only one week away, October 26, 2012 at 8AM! Witness the “lei-cutting” ceremony and join the festivities! Watch your mail for their Grand Opening post card. Bring it to the grand opening to receive a free gift and be entered for a chance to win free groceries! Be there: Trader Joe’s, Thruway Shopping Center, 252 S. Stratford Rd, Winston-Salem, NC 27103

Update 9/24/12 – Per signs at the Trader Joe’s location at Thruway Shopping Center TRADER JOE’S IS NOW ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS starting today!

Update 8/16/12, 2:45PM – It was officially announced today that the new Trader Joe’s

Trader Joe's carts

in Winston-Salem at Thruway Shopping Center is scheduled to open October 26, 2012 and will be open from 8AM-9PM every day. Permit delays caused setbacks in the original plans to open this month (August). The 13,000 square foot store will offer over 2,000 products under its own label.

Trader Joe's Coming Soon
Update: 4/19/12, 1:58PM

It was announced today that the new Trader Joe’s in Winston-Salem at Thruway Shopping Center will open in mid-August. The demolition work has already begun thanks to the help of Magnolia Construction. This opening schedule was announced today by Andrew Lopina, vice president of Thomas H. Hughes Architecture, who designed the exterior (showcased here) as well as the facade and the interior shell. The build-out inside is expected to start in the next month. The contract for the facade build-out is currently being bid on by Magnolia as well as I.L. Long and Shelco for the project, estimated at about $250,000. Thruway is expected to award the project next week to the winning construction company.


Trader Joe’s Plans To Open Its First Store In Winston-Salem, NC At Thruway

Trader Joe's Winston Salem Store Rendering at Thruway

March 9, 2012, 5:57PM, Winston-Salem, NC: It has been a long time in the making but the day we’ve all dreamed of has finally arrived. Trader Joe’s corporate offices in Monrovia, CA, announced today that they have signed a lease with Saul Centers to open a new store in 13,788 square feet of the former Border’s bookstore location in Thruway Shopping Center (see rendering of the storefront below). And, they plan to open in 2012!  As of March 12, 2012, construction had already begun.

Dedicated Fans Drove Success of Bringing TJ’s to Winston

For close to ten years, Winston-Salem residents and Trader Joe fans have worked diligently to making this dream of a home-town TJs a reality. Sure there are other factors but it is hard to ignore the fact that 40 people came out on a hot Saturday to an otherwise empty DASH BB&T Baseball Park to film a song, coordinated by TJ’s enthusiast and Winston-Salem resident, Tari Hanneman. They came with fan signs like you would expect to see at an American Idol concert, dressed in Hawaiian shirts and sunglasses – it was a festive afternoon that would make any company happy to witness in honor of themselves. The song was written by a group of locals who shared through lyric their enthusiasm for all of the wonderful and unique products that make the Trader Joe’s experience so special.

Then there was the petition that went around via evite 4 years ago that went viral (before everyone was on Facebook!) and got close to 500 signatures and encouraged countless new location sign-up request forms to be completed in honor of WS.

And most recently, a group popped up on Facebook called “Bring Trader Joe’s to Winston-Salem” in 2010 which now hosts 4,200 die-hard TJ fans who are very active in their group’s page discussions.

YOU did it – thank you for never giving up!

Important to Continue Showing Support for Trader Joe’s in the Triad

Even though the lease is signed, we feel it is important to continue showing our support and love of Trader Joe’s throughout the building process. Maybe we organize a city-wide party for the day they “break ground” at the new location. Perhaps we put a huge banner on the Wells Fargo building downtown when the sign goes up at Thruway for opening soon. The ideas are endless but if we want to ensure we get to shop at the new Trader Joe’s in Winston-Salem, we will need to make sure we support the process to get there. Never hurts…

Also, Greensboro is currently in discussions with Trader Joe’s to open a new location across from Friendly Center but has been delayed with zoning concerns. The good news is that zoning will certainly not be an issue in Winston since it is already zoned and recently used for retail sales. But, once the store opens in Winston-Salem, it also will make it more probable that a store will open in Greensboro and even Asheville if you look at TJ’s normal expansion planning. Once they set up a location and create massive demand there from surrounding markets in addition to the local market. Once new demand is created in these new markets, they will expand to grow that region and also utilize the distribution centers, vehicles, staff, etc. and even employees in many cases. This creates more efficiencies across their entire business which translates into more crazy fans like us here in Winston.

New Location for Trader Joe’s in North Carolina

The new Winston-Salem store will be located as 252 S. Stratford Road, Winston-Salem, NC 27103, near Dewey’s Bakery in Thruway Shopping Center.

This will be the 7th location in North Carolina after opening its first store in Cary in 2006 and beginning the state-wide pilgrimages for Joe Joe’s and Two-Buck Chuck Wine. Other locations are located in Chapel Hill, Raleigh, north Charlotte, midtown Charlotte and south Charlotte.

Breakout the Trader Joe’s Ale or Two Buck Chuck and let’s celebrate. Cheers Winston-Salem!

About The Author:

Born right here in Winston-Salem, NC, at Forsyth Memorial Hospital, Michelle is a native. At age one she moved to Virginia but after spending 30+ years moving around Virginia, Tennessee, Massachusetts, California and even Paris, France, Michelle returned home to Winston-Salem in 2004. A job at Hanes brought her here but the heart of the city has kept her here.

Her favorite things about Winston-Salem are its welcoming people who call it home, its art-centric culture, and its perfect location at the foot of the Blue Ridge mountains and a short drive to the beaches of the Atlantic. The lack of traffic is a pretty tremendous asset as well, especially since it gives her more free time to enjoy cooking and playing with her dogs, Lily and Barley. Michelle is one of the many residents of this great city who are thrilled to call this "My Winston-Salem"!

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Pat O
November 8, 2012 11:47 am

My daughter and I dropped in on day two of the Grand Opening.  Because of the sheer volume of people, I escaped with frozen raspberries, two bananas and a bottle of wine (wine being the most important). My daughter did much better because she had been to TJ's in Charlotte and knew what to look for. However, I did get to explore yesterday (on 11/7). What a wonderful experience! I was pleasantly surprised at the prices, the unique variety, and the courteous and happy employees. I got some goodies that I'll be trying for the first time … and TJ's is definitely on my weekly shopping menu! I love the healthy cooking selection, and their green environment attitude is a plus in my book!

Yay for Trader Joe's!!!

October 26, 2012 10:49 am

cookie butter spread??…also some almonds for me…dark chocolate of course.

Alex Schenker
October 26, 2012 8:06 am

Here's what I'll be getting this morning 🙂

  • Trail mixes
  • Roasted plantain chips
  • Kefir strawberry yogurt drink
  • $3 buck chuck (Chardonnay)
  • Lb. plus milk chocolate
  • Olive oil popcorn
  • TJ's ale
  • Pumpkin dog treats
  • Creamed honey
  • Fig Butter
  • Chocolate covered coffee beans
  • Cookie butter spread
  • Gruyere cheese