Rockville Reacts to Arrival of Highly Anticipated Grocer

After more than five years of suspense, residents of Rockville were introduced to a brand new grocery store over this past weekend located in the ever popular Rockville Town Square. Patrons swarmed the new retailer's first entry into the D.C. area market to participate in the highly publicized grand opening event.

Dawson’s Market is the second installment of a local chain; the first of which being Ellwood Thompson’s Market, located in Richmond, VA. Both stores specialize in supplying customers with locally sourced produce, sustainable and artisanal products. The shop owner and staff vow to provide consumers with “clean, high-quality products at fair prices, with exceptional customer service.”

Festivities began Friday night with a stage dedication ceremony in the plaza, a free tote giveaway, and a special sneak peek of the store.  At 7 o’ clock on Saturday morning, Dawson’s Market officially opened its doors. Savvy shoppers were welcomed by friendly and knowledgeable staff as they passed through an impressive balloon archway, built to resemble fruits sold inside.  Immediately upon entering, all eyes feasted upon stalls of hyper-local produce and bulk bins of nuts, seeds, coffee, and sweets.  Seafood and meats lined the back wall, leading around to the prepared foods section.  Chefs offered samples and stocked a beautiful display cabinet with delicious-sounding dishes such as Roasted Beet Salad, Black Bean Burgers, Sesame Scallops, and Curried Chicken.

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Two full hot and cold bars took center stage for most shoppers, while other visitors admired the selection of wines, cheeses, and beer near the baked goods.  A small coffee and juice bar sits off to one side of the store, surrounded by quaint café seating.  Customers dining in are encouraged to organize their waste in clean paper, compost, and recycle bins.

Outside, attendees enjoyed classic rock covers courtesy of local band The Digits!  Parents visiting with children were able to partake in pumpkin painting, cookie decorating, necklace creation and more with members of the VisArts center.  Guests were also invited to play “Name That Produce” for a chance to win appealing prizes.

Unique to Dawson’s is their sensitivity to product contents.  All items are carefully screened before being added to the stock.  Artificial flavors, colors, sweeteners, and preservatives are only part of an extensive list of banned ingredients.  Such action shows the integrity of the market and their commitment to customer health and satisfaction.  Prepared foods are also identifiable by categorical pins such as Raw, Veggie, Vegan, Low-Sodium, Gluten Free, and Organic.

Localite Anne-Marie Bisnett described her first impression of Dawson’s as “a fun place to come when you want to get out and enjoy some food and coffee. It’s a great location – I love the café atmosphere!”

Interested shoppers and fun-loving foodies can expect to see live demonstrations in early October. Dawson’s will also be donating 5% of daily sales to Manna on Saturday the 6th, which will help assist low and moderate-income families in achieving their goal of homeownership.

If that isn’t enough to get you going, consider the market’s eco-incentives:  Customers who bring reusable bags receive 10¢ back, whereas those who arrive to the store via “walking, riding a bike, taking the bus, skateboarding, rollerblading, skipping, running, or even walking on your hands” get 25¢ taken off their total.  Folks who are intent on driving can receive up to two hours of free parking with ticket validation.

For more information on this marvelous market, be sure to visit their website at www.dawsonsmarket.com

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