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November 10, 2008

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Jules

Aww, poor guy. Great pics.

Gabe

I don't think the Superstore/National stores ever recovered from the toll taken by the strike its workers went on either. As I recall it wasn't long after the strike that they all shut down.

Elizabeth

wow, I guess bums really do live in Bumtown. Poor guy, I'm sure being homeless does suck.

That guy has same really white teeth though.

Brad

About two years ago I had the pleasure of going inside the building for the first time since I was a child. It was owned by a local printing company who was leasing it out to Georgia Pacific for storing their paper products.

Trey

I remember going there as a kid with my mom. All I remember is that you could get health stuff like what they sell at WholeFoods now. I used to LOVE the carrot chips.

Oh yeah, and they had a toy department.

Chris

If you are reading this Brad I'd love a description of the condition of the inside of the building. Was it completely gutted or does it still resemble a grocery store? For some reason that building has fascinated me for years. It's like a strange 1980's vision of the future.

Big Daddy

It is kind of haunting in a post-apocalyptic future way.

Great pics.

Matt

Where is this?

Ryan

I can remember when that place first opened in the early 80's. It was quite a big deal, and I think the facade has held up well considering it's been closed for over 15 years. Looking back, the store was really ahead of its time. Like one of the previous posts said, it was like the Whole Foods of it's day. Lot's of unique and hard to find items. A workers strike put the place out of business around the early 90's. No suprise, it's just across from the Bellmont Hotel in a previous post. Collen, I was wondering when you were going to hit this place!

Ryan

I can remember when that place first opened in the early 80's. It was quite a big deal, and I think the facade has held up well considering it's been closed for over 15 years. Looking back, the store was really ahead of its time. Like one of the previous posts said, it was like the Whole Foods of it's day. Lot's of unique and hard to find items. A workers strike put the place out of business around the early 90's. No suprise, it's just across from the Bellmont Hotel in a previous post. Collen, I was wondering when you were going to hit this place!

Caitlin

Oh wow, these pictures brought back memories! We had an empty Superstore in Lafayette with that same giant yellow frame road sign for years. I remember going with my parents as a child and getting to put my quarter in the cart to unlock it from the others, then getting the quarter back when we returned the cart. Such an overwhelmingly yellow place. It got demolished to build a stadium movie theater.

Leslie @ the oko box

Oh my gawd- I really used to get freaked out in the real superstore ... it was the biggest grocery we had ever seen! In New Olreans the employees were on roller skates and I remember accidently breaking a jar of grape jelly and some guy comes swooping around the corner on rollar skates with a mop to clean it up. The fun ended with a crying kid we heard throughout the whole shopping experience being outside when we left and he threw up right in front of me. I never went back.
lol

The Anonymous Anonymous

Ah, just when I was trying to remember what this big grocery store where my parents used to shop was, I find you have posted about it! I remember going there quite a bit in the mid-80s, but I have vage memories of it. Nothing beyond it being huge, having more stuff grocerywise than one could shake a stick at, and the back where the meat cases were seeming rather industrial and warehouselike (I am positive there were bare concrete floors or white linoleum floors back there). Although now that I think about it, I think there were some sausage cases on the side wall once one went in? I wish I'd paid more attention to the inside of the store back then!

JamesZ

I used to work at the real Superstore on Harvey, LA. My first job actually, and I think I pretty much worked in every department, or at least alot of them: bagger, cashier, cash room, pricing dept, video store, and was one of those guys on the roller skates.

It really was a super walmart before there were super walmarts. I mean, ours had a video store, eye doctor, hair salon, dentist office, deli, backery, clothing, toys, hardware, and more. And if you thought something rang up wrong, they'd send the skater to verify it. Try that today! yeah right.

Austin

To the person asking where this store was located in Baton Rouge, it was on Greenwell Springs Rd just east of Airline Hwy:

http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&source=s_q&hl=en&geocode=&q=greenwell+springs+rd,+baton+rouge,+la&sll=37.0625,-95.677068&sspn=37.188995,73.828125&ie=UTF8&ll=30.479057,-91.107436&spn=0,359.997747&t=h&z=19&layer=c&cbll=30.478404,-91.107554&panoid=tr-2-b1KlOgxghdAYoXdAg&cbp=12,126.6933817287186,,0,6.214701105963597

Skoota

Wow... I remember it just like it was yesterday. It was laid out pretty much like Super Wal-Mart is today. From the entrance, the deli was to the left, followed by a small assortment of electronics, toys, and OTC medicines. As you walked to the back, you had the pharmacy, then the seafood section, which had live lobster. Across the back was the meat case and deli. Around the side was the bulk foods and florist. In the far right corner of the store was the bakery, which had the best Red Velvet cake around (next to Gambino's) They also gave free chocolate chip cookies to kids. Then you had your grocery section, which had every product you could imagine, a la Sam's Club. Let's not forget the talking cash registers... the grand futuristic touch! Up front was an optometrist, which supplied me with my share of glasses through high school, the video rental store, and liquor/tobacco station. My best friend was actually one of those guys on the roller skates, and we still laugh about it today. Thanks for the memories!!

BriM

omg I loved this place!! I remember telling my granny to "use the calculator on the cart"...I was too young to understand the quarter deposit thing. Going there meant getting a toy! So sad that it went out of business...

JohnN

Albertsons, Wal-Mart, and labor strikes were pretty much the death blow for this place and Kroger.

If you want a real blast from the past, there's a used office furniture store at the corner of Antioch and Tiger Bend ... in what must have been an old National Food Store. I walked in there one day and it was scary retro. Straight out of the 70s/80s.

David Hamer

Lafayette's The Real Superstore has a facebook group

http://www.facebook.com/home.php#/group.php?gid=82686776330&ref=mf

robert stephens

the store at the corner of antioch and tiger band was a winn dixie... the used furniture store is actually next door and it what was a "howards" discount store...

Jordans Sneakers

Through the earth, and that is love is the treasure!

Ronnie O

A movie has recently moved in. A lot of employees, police guarding it.

Jeff

Thanks much for posting this. I worked at the Real Superstore during its first summer of operation as a bag boy.

The biggest problem with that business IMO was that the location was horrid. The whole area was already in the early stages of decay (the Bellemont was practically next door for example) and it was part of an ill-conceived effort to "revitalize" North BR. Which as we know failed horribly.

I do remember many nights spent in the parking lot rounding up carts before quitting time at midnight. If memory serves correctly, that first summer of RS operation was the summer of 1986.

angela holden

I was craveing these Yellow marshmallows snack cakes with chocolate cookie at the bottom and coconut sprinkels on top don't remeber the name only got them there it was in a brown and clear plastic cardboard bottom if anyone remeber please post also took my first picture with santa and remeber my mom let me put the basket up and get the quater while she and my sister got the car started and when I walk back I saw them pulling off they forgot me lol it was two or three min.but the shock thank god they came back

brett

I worked there for a couple of years while I was in college. Some great memories from that place

HeyWesHey

I grew up in the 80's in North BR, very close to the superstore... I have so many memories of going to the bakery to get my "free" cookie, to getting my butt whooped when I would wander off for my mom and almost like clockwork get lost and begin crying when I wandered too far. The buggies were also facinating with the quarters and for awhile they also had "mini carts" that kids could push through the store... so many grocery trips there. Great place with great people.

Osha London

I used to work in the real superstore from 1989 to 1993 when I was at Southern. Worked in grocery and warehouse. Have very fond memories and of the place. Even now it's very sobering to see what once was one of the premier thriving locations in Baton Rouge reduced to an empty abandoned lot.Sobering.

Pseudo3D

This was part of the National brand of grocery stores (spun off from Loblaws, which still has The Real Canadian Superstore), and then it was sold to Schwegmann, which choked on the stores it had (too many) and could not recover. This was one of the first to go in late 1997.

Had Schwegmann not gone for the whole batch, it would be around today, but not sure about Real Superstore.

Doug Alford

Ran into one of my co-workers from The Real Superstore-Greenwell Springs Road location last month. We worked there when it first opened. Great to find out what happened to most of my co-workers after the store closed. Some of the butchers went to work at Hi-Nabor, others became delivery truck drivers, and some are dead now. WWF's Junkyard Dog once shopped there. A customer leaving the store dropped dead just outside the exit door in 1985. Hard to believe how fast time has flown by since opening day June 20, 1984.

DAS

Very interesting...my mother always took us to this store...so much so I remember it's aisles like the back of my hand...there was live lobsters in the back and a dentist in the front...and free adult sized sugar cookies all the way to the left for children... on Sundays a tall man would dress up as a clown and pass out the cookies and make balloon animals for the kids... how could a grocery store leave me with so many memories? My last memory of the Real Superstore was pretending not to listen to every word of an grown folk conversation my mother was having with a friend by the seafood section. It was the late 80's early 90's and the big talk was Breast Cancer... I didn't even have breast yet but I remember my eyes growing twice their size as the woman shared gory details of what her friend's breast were doing since she was not diagnosed with breast cancer until it was too late in the stages. I gripped the yellow plastic around the shopping cart and tried not to cry as she explained that the woman's nipple turned inside out and oozed puss. I remember my mother's face stricken with horror and my embarrassment as she reached for her own boob in disbelief to hearing the details...
I decided to google the Superstore to see what came up and I found this blog...I read it and was moved to post something since your companion and I had the same name and I grew up reading My Daily Bread with my dad every morning. Life is so full circle...I'm going in for my first mammogram of my life and have been dreading and putting it off... I just feel too young and I want to believe the pain in my breast is from too many Starbucks double espressos. We shall see.

Paul Brister

I worked there for 4 years. 1 as a bag boy and 3 in produce. HEY OSHA LONDON!! I could make a TV series based on my memories there. I've driven by a few times recently and it was heart wrenching to see it in its condition. Also very spooky. Every year the union would re-negotiate their contract and every year National would claim that they were on the verge of going under. I guess they weren't lying.
When they first opened they had a ton of employees. 4 or 5 getting carts out of the parking lot. One guy stood out front and only handed out the carts. The quarter for the carts didn't last long nor did that guy. Soon there were only 2 in the parking lot gathering the carts. I remember one lady, who had a baby in her cart, popping wheelies with her cart. It got away from her and flipped back scrapping the baby's knees. Lucky it didn't break her baby's legs.
Once a kid in a cart was trying to hit me while I bagged groceries.
I chipped my two front teeth there. The dentist up front fixed me up. Dr. Lala. Yes, his name is Lala. I still have those caps.
All the guys there loved the girls in the bakery. Good times, good memories. Its sad nothing lasts. I wish someone would do something with it. Or tear it down. Its too sad to look at. Thanks again for this. Maybe I'll start a facebook group.

Dennis W

Oh yeah, I worked there for 8 years. Lots of memories. Yep! they were striving to be "The Real Superstore". Plans were to build another location in the Siegan area. I moved to Lafayette and worked at that location for about 8 months. Anybody else remember Dennis Wicker tag me on facebook under Kevon Saber.

Sarah B. Peters

I used to work at Superstore here in Canada. They are still around & growing, even with Wal-Marts usually acrosss the street. Google Real Canadian Superstore for pix of the new building designs. :)

angela

Oh yes, the Real Superstore, everyone has such fond memories of that store.. including myself. I remember when they shut down, I thought I just know the grocery prices will never be the same at any other store. I was right. I used to be able to get $250.00 of groceries for around $100 bucs. It was the best damn store for prices, amazing. When the Real Superstore went so did the low prices. Wal-Mart never quite kept up whit those very low prices that the Real S. had. They tried though. I went to the Real S. in Harvey on the westbank of New Orleans and also the one in Kenner near David Dr. I think Wal-Mart copied off of their idea of a 'super' store when they started the Super Wal-Marts..

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