Fireside Market focusing on convenience with exterior updates, new service
By the time snow becomes a regular weather condition and the hordes of Ikon pass holders descend on Winter Park, Fireside Market and Eatery hopes to have a whole new facade to attract more Main Street traffic.
Just two years into opening, Fireside Market, located on U.S. Highway 40, is making some serious changes, including constructing a new entrance on the side of the building facing Main Street and offering new services, such as online ordering and pick-up.
“It will hopefully make it easier for walking traffic to not have to go all the way around (the building),” said Kaitlyn Bellfi, store director. “We’ve gotten feedback about the convenience of getting into the building.”
In addition to the new entrance, the market has already set up additional patio seating near the new entrance and Bellfi said they plan to have a mural on the front wall as well.
“We’re trying to do something that fits the theme of the town, but also shows it’s our mural,” she said.
In July, the Winter Park Town Council approved a $12,500 commercial enhancement grant for the new entrance, outdoor seating and mural. Mayor Jimmy Lahrman agreed that a Main Street entrance was critical for the business.
“It’s important for our community, particularly for this business, to have that additional access and visibility on the highway,” he said. “Also, the town looks at that property with the parking structure and the additional affordable housing as kind of a partnership.”
Beyond cosmetic changes to the building, Bellfi said they are trying to make the store as convenient as possible, so the store recently began offering online ordering, which allows customers to order groceries and pay online and then drive up to the market where the groceries are delivered to your car.
The service is still new, so it hasn’t been utilized a lot yet, Bellfi said, but added that she thinks it will pick up during ski season when people want to spend more time on the mountain than in the store.
“People coming into town don’t want to spend an hour at the grocery store, they can order even before they leave home and pick it up on the way to their condo or hotel,” she said. “I’m hoping it will make things more convenient and give people a reason to shop locally in Winter Park.”
Online ordering for the eatery is in the works as well, she said.
On the eatery side of the business, the store hired an executive chef, who has plans to update the menu and offer fresh options. The coffee shop in store also started to offer kombucha on tap and a variety of CBD drinks.
Bellfi explained that, unlike other grocery stores, Fireside’s selection is constantly being tweaked to include suggestions from customers on what they’d like to see in store.
“We have the ability to bring in whatever we want,” she said. “The biggest thing is people are so used to going to Safeway, so changing that habit and getting them in the door, because once they come in here, they come back.”
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