Maggie’s Market celebrating 50 years

  • Maggie's Market is celebrating 50 years this year, after beginning in a Dublin garage back in 1969. Staff photo by Tim Goodwin—

  • Maggie's Market is celebrating 50 years this year, after beginning in a Dublin garage back in 1969. Staff photo by Tim Goodwin—

  • Maggie's Market is celebrating 50 years this year, after beginning in a Dublin garage back in 1969. Staff photo by Tim Goodwin—

  • Maggie's Market is celebrating 50 years this year, after beginning in a Dublin garage back in 1969. Staff photo by Tim Goodwin—

  • Maggie's Market is celebrating 50 years this year, after beginning in a Dublin garage back in 1969. Staff photo by Tim Goodwin—

Monadnock Ledger-Transcript
Published: 9/9/2019 5:28:27 PM

The story of how Maggie’s Market made it to 50 years is one that began not in its current home on Main Street in Peterborough, but rather, a small garage in Dublin.

Back in 1969, three sisters, Judy, Tina and Maggie Buchholz opened what was the equivalent of a co-op selling things like grains and oats to those looking for another avenue to purchase food in bulk.

The idea of whole foods wasn’t as prominent as it is today, but there was a need and it quickly began to grow. After operating in Judy’s garage for a couple years, the sisters expanded to a location at the bottom of Dublin hill, where Hedge House Gifts is today.

After about 10 years between Judy’s garage and the location in Dublin, Maggie’s spent five years at the Strand Building in Peterborough, first owned by Karen Clement, who purchased the business from the sisters in 1979, and then Dick Quinn. After the five-year lease was up, Quinn moved Maggie’s to its current location at 14 Main Street and despite changing hands a few more times, it has remained there for the last 35 years.

Quinn owned Maggie’s for 11 years between the two Peterborough locations and then Ira Conrad spent the next 12 years as the owner until 2008. That’s when Peter Robinson, who had purchased his uncle’s business, Roy’s Market four years earlier, decided to expand his business to include the organic health food store.

Maggie’s all started with bulk items, starting with things like flour and spices, as well as rice and grains, but it so much more today.

“Health food, when it began, was about whole foods, simple foods,” said Bobbi Lindsay, who has worked at Maggie’s for more than 20 years. “So that’s why it began as bulk because when you think about it, bulk food is whole food.”

Slowly, as people became more aware of the idea of whole and natural foods, there was a greater need for a wider variety of items. Lindsay said she has seen a lot of different changes in the way people can and do consume food over the years and it has created more need for a store like Maggie’s. There was the push toward whole wheat, the identification of celiac disease, the integration of soy-based products, non-GMO and gluten-free items that are looked to more and more these days.

“From my experience in the industry, I see people all the time with food sensitivities, people who want to avoid gluten and we’re able to find foods for them,” Lindsay said.

It was the reason that Lindsay began shopping at Maggie’s after developing some food sensitivities in the early 1990s.

“I shopped at health food stores, but back then they didn’t have gluten-free foods necessarily,” Lindsay said. “Now we have all these wonderful gluten-free options.”

She has seen other stores in the area relocate or close down, but Maggie’s has adjusted and adapted to the needs of customers and now celebrating half a century since its modest beginning in a home garage.

“Fifty years later and there’s this growing need to go back to bulk and whole foods,” Lindsay said. “Our strengths are our knowledge and the history we have in the community. This shows there has been a need for it for 50 years. We’ve stood the test of time and this says something about what we do.”

They also work to bring in local products and goods, and produce – and all organic.

“We continue to develop relationships with local farms,” said store manager Melissa Mustapha.

And that’s just the food side of what Maggie’s specializes in. They offer vitamins and supplements, kitchen gadgets, as well as all natural and organic health and beauty products. CBD has also been a big addition over the last year-plus.

To celebrate the milestone, Mustapha said that vendors have given them items that will allow them to raffle off baskets throughout the course of the year, with the hope to have a new raffle every two weeks. It will also be a bigger and better customer appreciation week during the first week of December.

They will also be hosting a series of wellness classes, the first focusing on CBD.

For more, visit www.maggiesmarketplace.com.


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