Entries by Steve Cooke

A Co-op Dozen – Reflecting on 12 Years of Local Love

Steve Cooke, General Manager at our Grand Opening in 2011   A Co-op Dozen- 12 Years in the Blink of an Eye Steve Cooke, General Manager 2011 Friendly City opened its doors on Monday, June 6th at 4 pm, as the Radical Roots CSA was coming to set up for its first pickup of season. […]

Vibrant, Local Economy

By Steve Cooke, General Manager 2/4/22 The first point of our Vision statement is “Friendly City Food Co-op exists so that the Shenandoah Valley has a vibrant, local economy.” This means that our goals include growing our local economy; creating and sustaining livable wage jobs; circulating dollars within the Valley; sourcing as much as feasible […]

A Co-op’s Response to the Loss of Curbside Recycling

We’re all hearing about more and more area cities and towns, besides Harrisonburg, who are eliminating curbside recycling. There are many contributing factors, including everything from China’s refusal to continue to accept America’s trash to a greatly reduced need for recycled glass. These factors have resulted in a stressed recycling market that is leaving cities nationwide in […]

Come Together

By Steve Cooke, General Manager and Big Cheese We can all agree that supporting the local economy is good for our community. What’s more supportive than owning your own grocery store, which sells products grown and made right here in Virginia? As our co-op grows, so does our ability to support local farmers, and entrepreneurs. […]

The Co-op Looks Forward: The Next 5 Years

By Steve Cooke, General Manager Just after we opened in 2011, the board of directors and a few members of the management team, including myself, spent a weekend creating a document which defines how and why the world will be different because the co-op exists. There was a very lively debate, and lots of visionary […]

Giving Back by Paying it Forward!

By Steve Cooke, aka the Big Cheese Earlier this month, I had the privilege of attending the 8th Annual Up and Coming Food Co-op Conference in Milwaukee, WI. Over 350 attendees from start-up food co-ops around the county, including a group from Fredericksburg, Va came out to learn how to get their co-ops off on […]

Shopping in Friendly City

By Steve Cooke, General Manager Friendly City is not like any other place that you have shopped. We get that! In fact, it was always our intention to create a whole new way to run a grocery store, from the way the store looks to the way our team members interact with you, our community, […]