The three Scolari’s markets in San Luis Obispo County, once a Central Coast staple for grocery shopping, are now just shells of their former selves as the Reno, Nev.-based chain continues to slash prices in hopes of moving merchandise off the shelves before the doors close for good May 16.
The deli, bakery, produce, meat and seafood sections have little or no food to offer.
Discount flyers hang from racks on aisles saying everything in the stores is 20 percent off. Shelves where products used to be are now barren.
“It’s kind of like losing a friend,” said Carla Green, who has shopped at the Scolari’s in San Luis Obispo for the past 15 years.
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On April 12, Scolari’s announced it planned to close its supermarkets in Paso Robles, Pismo Beach, San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara after more than 60 years on the Central Coast. Scolari’s said it would refocus on its 14 Nevada locations.
NKT Commercial, owned by Nick and Kathy Tompkins, purchased the properties in Paso Robles, San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara.
Tompkins told The Tribune he is in discussions with several retailers who might be interested in leasing the sites, but he would not elaborate further.
As for what the future holds for the building housing Scolari’s in Pismo Beach, the owner and broker said they have multiple offers on the table and are deciding which retailer will best suit the community, according to Tai Martin, senior vice president of the Central Coast office of commercial brokerage firm Colliers International.
Scolari’s will likely continue to offer discounts to customers in order to move merchandise out of the stores, according to marketing manager John Stampfli.
However, Stampfli couldn’t say whether prices would be cut further as the closure date draws nearer.
Meanwhile, loyal customers line up to grab bargains and say their goodbyes to the checkers, baggers and other Scolari’s employees who have been more to shoppers than their job titles suggest.
“I’m really sorry to see it go,” said Scolari’s regular Jeanie Dapelo. “It’s really sad. When you walk through the doors, you see that everything is gone.”