Trader Joe's fans, mark your calendars. The highly touted specialty grocery chain — one of the nation's hottest retailers — plans to open both of its area stores at 8 a.m. July 15. T he stores are in Ward Parkway Center at 8600 Ward Parkway in south Kansas City and in Leawood's One Nineteen at 119th Street and Roe Avenue.
Trader Joe's has built a strong following with low-priced, high-quality food and beverage items, from basics such as milk and eggs to artisan breads, Arabica bean coffees, international frozen entrees, 100 percent juices, fresh crop nuts, and vitamins and supplements. Its buyers travel the world seeking out unique products, and about a dozen items are introduced each week, adding to t he excitement. The company buys directly from manufacturers to keep prices low. And it takes out preservatives, artificial colors and ingredients before putting its Trader Joe's label on.
Facebook's "Bring Trader Joe's to the Kansas City Metro!" had more than 8,000 members when the Monrovia, Calif., company finally granted their wish, signing the two area leases last fall.