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By Bev Odom/The Red River Sun—
WELLINGTON — Consumers confined to the county during the coronavirus pandemic created a surge in business for Market Square Supermarkets, according to the owners of the store.
In an effort to enhance customer convenience, new meat and frozen food cases are being installed in the Wellington store.
“We started with new produce and dairy cases in March 2019 and are looking forward finishing the project,” said James Ellis, store manager. “We ask customers to please bear with us during the installation process. Once we get them situated, the shopping experience in our store will be greatly enhanced.”
Ellis, who has been in the grocery business since 1974, started with Velasquez Group, LP in 2001 at the Stinnett location, having previously worked for supermarket chains in Amarillo. He moved to Wellington in 2003 when Velasquez purchased the Wellington store.
He said he appreciates local residents shopping at home because it makes the difference in the success of a business.
“It’s been very good for my staff of 15 as we have worked a lot of extra hours,” he said.
Carol Bodine, office manager, has been with the store location for 24 years.
“People shopping at home during COVID-19 have kept us in business,” she said. “Supporting Market Square means a whole lot to us.”
Market Square Supermarkets owner Johnny Velasquez ventured into the grocery business in 1972. With its headquarters in Wheeler, the Velasquez Group, LP partners include his daughter Casey Velasquez, also of Wheeler, who serves as office manager, and his son Tom Velasquez of Amarillo, the company’s general manager.
“Dad is our runner,” said Casey Velasquez. “He basically runs around as our fearless leader.”
With around 250 employees, the Velasquez Group also owns Texas stores in Stinnett, Sunray, Wheeler and Shamrock plus Hinton, Cheyenne, Eufaula, Checotah, Stigler and Stilwell, Okla.
“We appreciate our Wellington customers and look forward to completing the store renovations,” Johnny Velasquez said.