With two locations in Pasadena, Lauer’s Supermarket & Bakery has given back to the community throughout the last 40 years through two majorly influential programs – Lauer’s Learning Ladder, which allows all customers to select a local school to which a percent of their grocery purchase will go, and the Pasadena Business Association’s annual Caring & Sharing Community Harvest Parade, when Lauer’s donates thousands of dollars’ worth of food for the needy.
Today, Lauer’s is operated by sisters Bernie Snoops and Babbie Poyer, who both believe there is great power in shopping locally and supporting small businesses.
Q: Share with our readers a few reasons you think it’s important to shop at local, brick-and-mortar businesses.
A: Brick-and-mortar stores are located in the community; thus, they offer the opportunity to see what you are purchasing, because the local business has made the investment in inventory to show you the selection. Because of the location of brick-and-mortar stores in the community, the dollars spent at them stay in the community.
Q: In your opinion, what can be done to make the relationship between the local residential community and the local business community stronger, more cooperative?
A: Pasadena is already a strong community, but with changes in retail formats available today, the local businesses must increase their communication with shoppers to remind them that the local businesses are still there supporting the community.
Q: Please explain how you personally support local nonprofit organizations and why/how that impacts the community as well as your business.
A: Through our Lauer’s Learning Ladder program, we donate $40,000 per year to local area schools. The PBA Harvest for the Hungry food drive and parade in November is a very important cause for Lauer’s; we donate food and sponsor food bags at our cost for customers to purchase, encouraging everyone in the community to be involved. On a daily basis, we support requests from local schools, scouting groups, churches, sports teams, community organizations, senior centers, volunteer fire departments, veterans groups and many more organizations.
Q: On average, how often are you, a local business owner, asked to make a donation to a nonprofit organization?
A: On average, we are asked daily - often several times a day - for donations.
Q: How does it make you feel when someone comes in and asks for a donation, when you know they don’t patronize your business?
A: We consider all requests in hopes that patrons as well as non-patrons will see the value of supporting a local business.
Q: What can be done to get people to understand that when they ask a local business owner for a donation, it should be a reciprocal relationship?
A: We definitely appreciate a reciprocal relationship; that is how the community can grow and we can continue to reinvest in our great community.
Q: List some ways members of nonprofit organizations can create awareness about the importance of shopping local.
A: The Northeast High School football team is a great example of this. We support many things at the school, but through working with the football team, we developed a relationship that has come full-circle. We have helped with team meals in many different ways, and one of the parents was instrumental in having the team give back to the community. They were part of the Harvest for the Hungry parade and collected food along the parade with Lauer’s.
Q: What do you cherish most about operating a small business in this area?
A: The relationships and the everyday interaction with the people in the community.
Q: If you could stress just one reason residents should spend their money at local businesses, what would it be?
A: Residents should spend money at local businesses not only to show support for the businesses that have made the investment in their community but also to show pride and support their neighborhood.
Lauer’s Supermarket and Bakery has been part of the Pasadena community for 40 years. Founded by Helen and Ed Lauer, the business is owned by their two daughters - Babette Poyer and Bernadette Snoops. With two locations in Pasadena, 8489 Fort Smallwood Road and 8095 Edwin Raynor Boulevard, Lauer’s operates as a traditional supermarket as well as a full “made-from-scratch” bakery. Hours of operation are Monday through Saturday 7:00am-10:00pm and Sunday 7:00am-8:00pm. More information is available at www.lauerssupermarkets.com or by calling 410-437-4800 (Riviera Beach) or 410-255-0070 (Chesterfield).