By ASHLEY MATHEW
Special to the NEWS
Red paneling and beige brick walls are what you see when you stop by Rodriguez Grocery & Fruit Market. Inside there are numerous shelves piled high with snacks and drinks. If you are in the mood for a beer or want to buy a lottery ticket, Rodriguez Grocery has you covered.
The iconic store was first opened in 1958, making this year their 61st anniversary. The store itself comes from humble beginnings: it once started off as a simple fruit stand, but as the years went by, the yard stand expanded into a thriving store. Rodriguez Grocery is family owned and operated and has since been passed down to Antonio Rodriguez and his wife Gloria Rodriguez.
Antonio Rodriguez, along with his brothers and sisters, have all worked to make the store what it is today. Antonio and his wife bought the business from his parents and have now operated it for the last 30 years. Rodriguez did not always work at his parents’ business, however; before taking on the grocery, he was actually a school principal.
The quaint town of San Benito recently received shocking news that their beloved local grocer had put their business up for sale. Many have voiced their sadness against the decision to sell. Rodriguez explained, “You get to a certain age where you just want to enjoy what you have. Our daughters are not exactly interested in the grocery business.”
Rodriguez explained, “We are getting up there in age. My wife wants to do some traveling.” The reason for selling the family business is not out of pressure. Antonio and his wife would like to enjoy the fruits of their labor. “We are trying our luck by putting up the business for sale. If it does not sell…it does not sell and we will continue to work here,” Rodriguez stated.
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