NOT a former Centennial A&P
ShopRite, Millburn, NJ
Village Super Market of Springfield, NJ) around 1976 - not sure exactly where I got that year - when it was completely renovated. It may have been renovated once more since then but certainly no more than that.
* For anyone who doesn't know, the name "Wakefern" is made up of the original members' last names. They are:
W = Louis Weiss
A = Alex & Sam Aidekman
K = David Kesselman
E = Nothing, but makes it easier to pronounce
FERN = David Fern
The wall facing Main St. is completely blank. It's often assumed that it was originally covered in windows when it was an A&P. Although it was never an A&P, it's possible the front-end originally ran along the street. Today, however, the aisles run parallel to Main St and the checkouts are along the parking lot. (UPDATE: This has been confirmed by a photo submitted by the Millburn-Short Hills Historical Society. See here.)
The entrance is actually on the far end of the store from Main St.
You can see in the above picture the store has an arched roof. It's an interesting feature. As usual, I would prefer that it was exposed, but there is a drop ceiling inside. Before we head in, let's take a look at Village's . . . er . . . eclectic . . . collection of shopping carts.
1) Red plastic, metal frame, new logo printed in black.
2) Red plastic, metal frame, new logo on white decal over old logo.
3) Grey plastic, metal frame, new logo printed in white.
Village Super Market has also been known to use any combination of the following carts as well:
4) Black plastic, metal frame, new logo printed in yellow.
5) Red metal, metal frame, old-fashioned white SHOP RITE on red handle.
6) Grey metal, metal frame, new white ShopRite lettering on red handle.
7-8) Grey metal, metal frame, new white ShopRite lettering on black handle. These come in two sizes.
9-10) Black metal, metal frame, new black ShopRite lettering on yellow handle. These come in two sizes.
11) Grey metal, double-decker, new white ShopRite lettering on red handle.
12) Black metal, double-decker, new black ShopRite lettering on red handle.
13) Dark green plastic, metal frame, new logo printed in white.
14) Dark green plastic, metal frame, former Kings carts with Kings logo spray-painted out in black.
15) Blue plastic, metal frame, former Pathmark carts with Pathmark logo intact but new blue handle with new black ShopRite lettering.
That's 15 different kinds just off the top of my head!
When you enter the Millburn ShopRite, you make a 180-degree turn to your right immediately, as you enter towards the checkouts. On your right (along the front wall) are the small customer service, deli, and seafood departments. (I'm surprised the store even has service seafood, although there is no bakery.) Produce follows, with meat and dairy along the back wall.
Morris Plains and Union stores, as well as the currently-operating Watchung store. Village Super Market used this decor package in the late 70s and early 80s. The "village"-inspired pictures on the banners were officially part of the decor package we see here and here. (I hope to, sometime in the future, create a whole directory of Village's decor packages, from around 1975 on.)
Let's check out some aerial views.
Virtually nothing has changed over time.
1979 (soon after Village took over)
Nothing in 1954.
If you're interested in supermarket history, make sure to check out the Millburn ShopRite. It's a little on the dingy side but full of historical artifacts! Given that Millburn is one of the highest-income towns in the state, I'm quite surprised this store hasn't been kept up better than it has.
ShopRite220 Main St, Millburn, NJ 07041
Open Mon-Fri 7AM-9PM; Sat 7AM-8PM; Sun 7AM-7PM
My Rating: ★★☆☆☆