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TOUR: Piggly Wiggly - Summerville, SC

Piggly Wiggly
Owner: David Smith
Opened: 2019 under current ownership; 1982 as Mr. K's Piggly Wiggly
Previous Tenants: none
Location: 404 N Cedar St, Summerville, SC
Photographed: January 2022
Welcome to the Charleston area, and welcome to Summerville! This town of 50,000 people was a favorite summer destination of residents of Charleston prior to air conditioning because of its cooler, inland location (we're about 23 miles northwest of downtown Charleston) and is said to have healthy air and a good environment for breathing. It also has, at the north end of downtown, a 28,000 square foot Piggly Wiggly! Until 2019, it was owned by the Kersting family, when it was sold to the current owner David Smith. There was also another Piggly Wiggly in town at 10048 Dorchester Rd, a strip mall now home to a Lowes Foods.
Beyond knowing that the store opened in 1982, I don't know much about this store's history. The one thing that does hit me very strongly -- even from the outside -- is its similarity to Food Lions. Was it a Food Lion before Mr. K's? Did Mr. K's move into this space at some point, possibly from the Dorchester Road location, and this one was originally a Food Lion? Or was it just the same designer or something?
We enter to sushi in an island straight ahead, with deli-bakery in the front right corner. Produce contines along the right-side wall, with meat/seafood on the back wall. Frozen foods are on the left-side wall of the store, with dairy in an alcove in the front left corner. Customer service is on the front wall beyond the registers.
Layout similarities to Food Lion are quite strong in here, especially compared to one of the ones we saw in Norfolk. But as far as I can tell, the decor has no similarities to Food Lion decor of any era. And this store feels roughly to be of the same era as Lexington, whose decor is quite different.
As we see, some of the fixtures (and the decor) are on the older side, but very nicely maintained. I wonder if there was any refreshing or reset when Smith took over.
This decor is strongly Piggly Wiggly, so there's definitely not any leftovers here if this ever had any relation to Food Lion. A mention of the product mix, there was a lot of local stuff including a large amount of local produce. Looks like that's something throughout Piggly Wiggly, as we'll see it in another store shortly.
Looking across the back wall, we see cold cuts, meat, and seafood. The service counters are in the middle of the back wall.
Moving into the grocery aisles, again we see older fixtures but in excellent repair. The store is also extremely clean and organized, as we see.
I suspect some of the decor is newer than the rest, such as the aisle markers and the awnings over the butcher/seafood counters.
As we see, this fixture is quite new too.
Interestingly enough, cold cuts are on the produce side of the back wall, with meat on the dairy/frozen side. Aren't cold cuts usually nearer to dairy/frozen?
Frozen foods and beer are in the last aisle and a half. As we see, there's some beer signage that isn't lighting up anymore...
But the dairy signage works perfectly!
As we move back to the front end, we take one more look across towards produce/deli.
The front end is another element that feels a lot more like a Food Lion.
But these days, it's certainly a Piggly Wiggly! Lots of smiling pigs around the store.
But check out this entrance/exit foyer. It looks like a Food Lion!
That's all for now, and tomorrow we're going just a few blocks south for a building that was previously a grocery store on Grocery Archaeology!


  1. Looking at historic aerials, it seems that this store was built between 1989 and 1994. The land was vacant before that. I thought that it looked more like a 90s store from the outside than an 80s store.


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