By Jenniffer WARDELL firstname.lastname@example.org
NORTH SALT LAKE–There’s an award-winning grocery store just down the street. Lee’s Marketplace, the Utah-based grocery store chain that has a location on Redwood Road in North Salt Lake, recently won the Remarkable Independent Award for In-Store Experience from “Winsight Grocery Magazine.” They received the award during a special presentation at the National Grocers Association Conference in Las Vegas earlier this week. “We are honored to be recognized as one of the inaugural class of Remarkable Independents,” said Jonathan Badger, president of Lee’s Marketplace. “Creating an excellent in-store experience for all our guests is always top of mind and we’re thrilled to be recognized by ‘Winsight Grocery Business’ for these efforts.” Lee and Sheri Badger opened the first Lee’s Marketplace location in Smithfield in 1981. Since then, the chain has grown to five stores, with other locations in Logan, North Ogden and Heber City. The North Salt Lake location opened in January 2017. All five stores are designed to cater to as wide a variety of shoppers as possible, including bulk foods, alternate yogurts and milks (such as cashew, almond and rice), allergy friendly foods, and gluten-free foods. There’s also a buffet area designed to do lunches and dinners that Badger said can fit over 100 people, a specialty candy area that includes a variety of house-made flavored popcorn, a made-from-scratch bakery, a pharmacy that offers drive-through service, and a floral department capable of handling events as well as individual bouquets. “They can do weddings, funerals, dances or just help you get out of the doghouse,” said Badger. This is the first year for the Remarkable Independent Awards, a nationwide competition that honored 16 independent grocery stores in four different categories including In-Store Experience, Community Stewardship, Customer Engagement and Online/E-Commerce. Lee’s Marketplace was the only Utah business to receive the award. “Our first-ever Remarkable Independents aims to shine a well-deserved spotlight on local retailers who go the extra mile to engage and serve their neighbors with a commitment to service, quality, convenience, value and integrity,” said Meg Major, VP of content for Winsight Grocery Magazine. The store is located at 725 N. Redwood Road in North Salt Lake.