4 years Owners for
Store in business since 2005
“If you ever sell one day, my spouse and I will be the takers.” That sentence is all it took for the owner of Les Marchés Tradition in Kingsey Falls, upon retiring only a year later, to contact Danny McCarthy and his spouse and ask them to take over the store. As soon as the agreement was reached, Caroline Isabelle left her position at Cascades to team up with her husband. That was in 2015. Since then, although new to the area, these parents of four have developed close ties with the community.
Socially involved since the beginning
As soon as they arrived in the neighbourhood, the new pair of owners decided to personally contribute to the community’s initiatives. Every month for the past four years, Danny and Caroline continue a tradition called “the Angels,” which consists in delivering anonymously donated food to families in need.
Caroline Isabelle is Co-Chair of the Arthabaska RCM’s Relay For Life organizing committee, which collaborates with the Canadian Cancer Society. She helps find sponsors and takes care of the food component of the event for the walkers, teams, and volunteers. As for Danny, he collects funds for the Children’s Wish Foundation’s hockey tournaments. Their grocery store even participates in the neighbourhood school party by giving out snacks at the daycare and providing a snack buffet to support the family foot race.
Discovering local skills
During the summer, the grocery store freely hosts mini-markets on its property that feature several local vegetable growers. Cascades took on the costs of production and constructing the kiosks in which the growers can showcase their products, even in bad weather. And that’s not all! The owners found a good way to win over regular customers by having them discover unique products. From May to mid-October, one kiosk highlights the local producers with whom the store does business. This is a way to remind customers that local products, such as bread, milk, honey, and wine, are available in the store all year long.
The customers also have access to high-quality homemade products, such as Caroline Isabelle’s cheese balls, of which she sells up to 100 in a single day during the holiday season. We can’t give you the recipe, however, because it’s a well-kept secret. It’s the same story for “Les cretons de Mononcle,” the hugely successful personal creation of the store’s butcher.
- $2,000: The amount raised for the hockey tournament
- 40: The approximate number of barbecue brushes sold to finance the Fondation de l’hôpital Hôtel-Dieu d’Arthabaska
Listening to the customers
The more you know your customers, the better you can meet their needs. Who is better suited than the consumer to highlight their favourite products? With this in mind, Danny and Caroline are working to create a “Customer Favourite” sticker system to highlight their star customers’ tastes. For example, “Mathieu Hamel’s favourite chips” can be found on a bag of chips. This promotional strategy reinforces their closeness with their customers and makes them a part of the store.
“Certain customers have become our friends.”
Danny and Caroline are very active on their store’s Facebook page and establish a real dialogue with its members, who often suggest new products, ask questions, or share comments.
Lucky to be in such good company
In town, everyone knows Danny, Caroline, and their children. Friendships have naturally developed after getting to know their customers, so much so that at one point, Danny and Caroline wanted to take a week of vacation, and customers whom they befriended offered to look after their four children! These friends already have three children, one of whom has muscular dystrophy. In an act of support, Caroline and Danny participate in a yearly march against the disease. Even the childcare educators offer to watch the couple’s children while they are away at Sobeys conferences. What would we do without mutual help?
Working for the community
Caroline finds that her community life is like a camping atmosphere. This makes Danny smile, and he confirms that the community is very open and “super welcoming.” It’s important for them to give back to the community, as important as protecting the environment. This is why the grocery store recycles their plastic containers as well as cardboard boxes, which are then collected by Cascades. Composting will soon follow. All in all, Les Marchés Tradition in Kingsey Falls actively participates in their community, and the community always gives back!
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