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Has the Piggly Wiggly name wiggled on out of Duluth?

I pulled up to the stop sign at Calvary and Woodland in the heart of Woodland yesterday, looked ahead, and… it’s gone!

The blast-from-the-past, decades-old Piggly Wiggly facade, cherished by… well, at least me, and featured in a PDD banner of yore, is no more! See for yourself:


Every time I drove past the store I had thought, “I should stop and take some photos before it’s gone” – and I don’t think I ever did. But someone else did… so here is what it used to look like. (is that old PDD banner is still around somewhere?)

For now, the lone pig sign by the road is still there:


I made an informal call to the store last night, and the clerk who answered said the store is not closing, but is undergoing a remodeling. He said he thought – stress, thought – that the Piggly Wiggly name was going to change as part of the work.

The store is owned by Miners, the Super One company; a history on their Web site says they opened the Woodland Piggly Wiggly in 1965… and I’d guess the building hasn’t changed much since then. The Woodland store is the only Piggly Wiggly left in the company – and apparently the only one left in Minnesota.

Perhaps they’ll make it a Super One, too; it would make sense from a business standpoint. Does anyone out there know more? Maybe I’ll give the company HQ a call this week.

In addition to the exterior, the interior of the store is / was a throwback, too… a sort of maze-like layout where you are channeled around two sides of the store in a single passageway before you can get to the rest of the aisles. A throwback… but I guess not very practical by today’s store standards.

It’s cool to see the owners make a commitment to remodeling the store at a time when so many neighborhood grocery stores have closed. But I guess every good thing comes at a price. So if the name is, in fact, gone from Duluth… RIP Piggly Wiggly.

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23 Comment(s)

  1. Oh, man! I just had a soccer game near there, and it was convenient to tell people it was “past the Piggly Wiggly” because if you say that, there’s only one possible location that I’m talking about.

    Beverly | Sep 13, 2009 | New Comment
  2. this’d be news to us, really…we move a lot of beans through the grocery stores in the ports, some more than others, but we would surely have heard of the Pig closing.

    lakeside super one is on the cusp of a huge remodel project. the parking lot is about done, from what i can tell, next is the major remodel.

    from what i can tell according to a couple of different sources, Miner’s has been losing a lot of the Lakeside biz to Mt. Royal and intends on making the l’side locale look a little more upscale to try and win back some of that lost biz.

    zra | Sep 13, 2009 | New Comment
  3. Just to be clear (and as noted above)…

    It does NOT appear the store is closing.

    It does appear that the Piggly Wiggly name may be lost in its remodeling.

    akjuneau | Sep 13, 2009 | New Comment
  4. I don’t know anything about the name, but I’m thinking that they’re fixing the roof. It’s been looking like Silent Hill in there for years, with plastic sheeting full of weird black “water” hanging from the ceiling. It also smells like a dead mouse. It hasn’t stopped us from shopping there, but it’s kind of creepy.

    Karasu | Sep 13, 2009 | New Comment
  5. aside from the super ones over in superior, Piggly’s the one most in need of remodeling…and no, ak, they’re definitely not closing…

    like i said, we move a fair amount of beans through there, and have heard nothing through the worker bee grapevine and tamara would have known through union channels.

    zra | Sep 13, 2009 | New Comment
  6. No way! I grew up on Gothenburg Road (by drake) and this was my mom’s grocery of choice (likely because of the adjacent liquor store) Neat little neighborhood of shops up there. Very nostalgic for me.

    lojasmo | Sep 13, 2009 | New Comment
  7. And, Tamara is a union thug? Cool. My union thug wife is up doing GOTV for the city council race. Remember to vote Tuesday!

    lojasmo | Sep 13, 2009 | New Comment
  8. oh, tamara’s the worst kind of union thug…she’s a whip smart, contract negotiating, shop organizing take no employer’s b.s., don’t even *think* of trying to put one over on her type of union thug.

    zra | Sep 13, 2009 | New Comment
  9. I’m very glad Tamara Jones is my friend. She is one bad ass.

    Calk | Sep 13, 2009 | New Comment
  10. The guy who owns (owned) died this past year. The Miners rent the building. Not sure who owns it now. Maybe his daughter? I know the Miners didn’t want to spend a dime on the place. I’d like to know what changed.

    Rob | Sep 13, 2009 | New Comment
  11. Yeah, anyone who shopped there every other day like us would know that the place has been falling apart for a couple of years, at least. They are just re-doing the roof, guys. Chill out. Like Karasu said, the place has smelled like a putrefied body for a log time, and that black ooze in the plastic was certainly not appetizing.

    ZB | Sep 14, 2009 | New Comment
  12. my favorite part of going to the Pig (and we will always call it that no matter what) is walking the woodsy way behind Forest Hill to get there… In the winter, it’s like an awesome time warp.

    hbh1 | Sep 14, 2009 | New Comment
  13. Can you all please poll what the *worst* grocery store in Duluth is? (and include 3 reasons plus one redeeming feature)

    my vote:
    Super One on 60th Ave W (Central)

    1. One road. Really? It would take hours and hours going from one car to a full parking lot. Some huge truck should just clear that fence so we can go in right from the off-ramp.

    2. Organic section? (dry) Put it all next to everything else. Do you think you’re breeding more hippies? (you’re not)

    3. Don’t herd me through your ‘discount’ aisle. Your dumbest customers will find it even if it is in the next also-aisle-you-have-to-go-through to get to the cashier.

    mevdev | Sep 14, 2009 | New Comment
  14. The guy (who apparently has recently died) that owns/owned this building would only sell this building to the Miner’s for probably 2-3 times what it is worth. They refuse to pay, and the building remains in disrepair.

    Msy | Sep 15, 2009 | New Comment
  15. quite possible they are changing their name to SuperOne (I think) I believe that’s what their bags already say, and what their new cash registers display on screen.

    Incidentally, has anyone noticed the new screens at some supermarkets? They not only tell the cashiers how much change to give, but have a pictogram of the cash-drawer telling them how many of each denomination to give (2 pennies, 1 nickle 1 $5 etc). Don’t want to devolve into a “kids these days” but sheesh.

    edgeways | Sep 15, 2009 | New Comment
  16. I was at the Wedge Co-op and their receipt showed the percentage of local products. Pretty damn cool. Too bad the whole place was full of people yelling into their bluetooth earpiece while bumping me with their carts.

    mevdev | Sep 15, 2009 | New Comment
  17. Miners is well known for its Pallucian facility upkeep practices, which border on some serious OSHA violations. They only fix just enough to get by, and rather shoddily at best…It seems they have plenty of dough to go on safari/big game hunting trips around the world, but not enough to maintain and repair their equipment to keep their employees safe.

    zra | Sep 15, 2009 | New Comment
  18. The new name for Pigs is going to be Miner’s Market. I hope someone saves that awesome sign with the pig wearing a butcher’s paper hat.

    Tim K | Sep 15, 2009 | New Comment
  19. I’m going to buy it and open a bar called Piggly Swiggly.

    Barrett Chase | Sep 15, 2009 | New Comment
  20. 1. Anthropomorphic swine typically promote cheerful gluttony, but not specifically pork chops.

    2. Without his tidy white hat, Piggly would appear much less hygienic.

    3. Paper hats have many other uses, but fail to protect your head from anything.

    pH | Sep 15, 2009 | New Comment
  21. I’ve been going there for years--they’ve been working on the freezer cases for just as long. They’ve never wanted to invest in a building they didn’t own but it’s still a great store. The Miners are very benevolent people--can you say anonymous donation?

    One funny story: My nephew--in ski boots--walks by the dairy case and sees a dead mouse on the floor. We go to check out and he says in a loud voice, “Hey lady you have a dead rat back there by your dairy case.” I’m still lol and this was 7 years ago.

    ss | Sep 16, 2009 | New Comment
  22. @pH I bet he has a combover under that hat.

    Barrett Chase | Sep 16, 2009 | New Comment
  23. i have been informed that piggly wiggly will be changing their name to “Minor’s Market” (I think)

    sferalin | Sep 17, 2009 | New Comment

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