Trader Joe’s opens in Asheville

Jason Sandford

Jason Sandford is a reporter, writer, blogger and photographer interested in all things Asheville.

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Screen shot 2013-09-27 at 4.31.39 PM tjsshoppersixTrader Joe’s opened its first store in Asheville on Friday morning about 7:45 a.m. to the cheers from employees and the excited reaction of a line of stoked shoppers. Check out some of my photos and tweets from the opening:

The coffee is kicking in and Trader Joe’s fans are perking up as they countdown to 8 am opening. #avltraderjoestjsshopperscarts

There are now about 25 people in line outside the new AVL Trader Joe’s. Traffic on Merrimon is moving smoothly. APD on scene just in case.

Line’s getting longer outside Trader Joe’s. #avltraderjoes

My buddy Clarke Morrison is here interviewing people about why they like Trader Joe’s. First person in line is shy to talk. #avltraderjoes

Looks like a ukulele player is setting up inside. #avltraderjoestjsplayers

The scene at Trader Joe’s right now, with about 15 minutes till opening.

The Trader Joe’s shoppers are starting their engines, revving their carts. #avltraderjoesBVKxrBtCcAALUa9

The doors have been flung open. Cheers! Applause! Leis! #avltraderjoes

Trader Joe’s shoppers are getting leid this morning.

Trader Joe’s shoppers and employees are high-fiving, dancing and cheering as they stream in. #avltraderjoes

Ashvegas has been following the Trader Joe’s saga for more than a year. Here are some of the greatest hits:

Trader Joe’s is coming to Merrimon Avenue in north Asheville.

How Ashvegas broke the story of Trader Joe’s arrival.

Seven things to know about Trader Joe’s from an employee.


Jason Sandford

Jason Sandford is a reporter, writer, blogger and photographer interested in all things Asheville.

  • 1

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  1. Big Al October 1, 2013

    I don’t know what the BFD about TJ is. I found the selection puny and the prices high. I sampled a couple of things and found them unremarkable. Plus, the parking lot is too small. Granted, there was a big crowd there, even after a week, so I must be out of touch. The staff were all very friendly, lots of hellos and have a nice days, etc. Of course, that comes right out of the corporate handbook on customer service/recovery, and I though TJ was supposed to be above big corporate behavior.

    1. chris October 2, 2013

      So corporate behavior regarding basic decency is more corporate than decent?

  2. FDR September 30, 2013

    It’s not the NCDOT fault but the fault of Trader Joe’s and the soon to be Chick Fil A, they should no better. Harris Teeter alone would have been fine but then greed by real estate developers got in the way and crammed two more businesses into a block. Trader Joe’s could have done a lot more revenue at a different location with easier access and traffic flow. I hope people that walk can support TJs because Harris Teeter will soon not allow parking for TJs customers. LOL

    1. chris September 30, 2013

      I’m guessing they have a second Asheville location planned.

    2. Knowed October 2, 2013

      I went last Sunday to Trader Joes. Parking lot was mobbed. Two cops sitting on their fat ass in the parking lot watching the clusterfu@k unfold. We parked in Harris Teeter lot and walked over. The employees at HT said it was no big deal, that they were happy to have people park there and go to TJ’s because it meant that people might actually shop at HT afterwards, which we did. manager at HT said they would even wrangle up the TJ’s shopping carts and take them back over there if need be. It may not be the best situation, but it is here and it will never change so quit bitching ALL THE TIME about TJ’s and the traffic and whatever. TJ’s is a nice store.

  3. Ron September 29, 2013

    Hey outsourced out-of-state Citizen-Times writers and copy editors: It’s Merrimon, not Marimon. Yeesh. See picture caption on

  4. North Asheville Neighbor September 29, 2013

    To everyone who has made light of our complaints about the traffic debacle: Does the fact that an APD officer is required to keep Chestnut flowing, yet the road is still complete gridlock, and at least a dozen pedestrian near misses prove the point? Anyone with any sense saw this coming. Shame on NCDOT. One of our most dangerous streets is now 1000x more dangerous.

    1. Lexingtonian September 30, 2013

      I drive right through this intersection on my way to work and have encountered zero problems since the stores opened.

      I was thinking it all went pretty smoothly!

  5. burnsey September 28, 2013

    Kon-Tiki, with Hank Bones is the band.

  6. Melinda Tennison September 27, 2013

    I love how there’s no Trader Joe’s in Hawaii, but in AVL it opens with leis and ukes. 🙂


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