Welcome to Spokane Trader Joe’s!

On Friday, October 28th Spokane welcomed its first Trader Joe’s! I seriously contemplated taking a personal day to attend the grand opening celebration. I decided not to spend the night in freezing temps, and instead waited a full 24 hours before running up the hill to buy out the store.

We were greeted by drummers.

I danced, I have no shame.

I went with my friends who have twin two-year-old boys, we told them we were going to the zoo. But a different kind of zoo, the kind that keeps food in cages and the people are crazy.

The store is around 10,000 square feet, which is in line with the normal Trader Joe’s intimate experience. And aside from the opening weekend crowds, the size didn’t make me feel too claustrophobic.

Beautiful murals of Spokane parks line the walls, this one of our Red Flyer wagon in Riverfront Park is my favorite.

The fact that my favorite mural is above the two buck Chuck section of the store is not lost on me.

Check out was a breeze, as every lane was open. I did damage in the $150 range, and walked out with lots of favorites.

After starting to load the car, we regretted carpooling.

It may look like a ridiculous amount for an in-town purchase, but the store is located on the opposite side of town. It took over a half hour to drive there (1 hour+ round trip), with no traffic.* It is actually located in my old neighborhood, which is the only reason I didn’t switch doctors, dentists, or optometrists when we moved. I now have an excuse to go to Trader Joe’s whenever I have a medical issue. Maybe I’ll actually go to the doctor when I have a cold from now on…

*This is, however, still 4 hours less than it would take me to drive one-way to the nearest Trader Joe’s prior to Friday.

They were only out of one item on my must-purchase list: Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk. Items I was able to purchase include:

  • Chocolate covered peanut butter pretzles
  • Dark chocolate sea salt covered almonds
  • Australian licorice
  • Trader Joe’s brand 2% Greek plain yogurt
  • goat cheese crumbles
  • Tea tree oil face wash
  • roasted garlic hummus

I’m hoping the popularity of this store, and the number of Idaho, Montana and Canadian licenses I saw in the parking lot, are indication we will have a second Trader Joe’s in our future. Preferably on the north side of town. 🙂

What are your must buy items at Trader Joe’s?

Do you have a Trader Joe’s in your town? If not, how far do you travel to get your fix?