Following the retirement of former owner Scott Rowland and, after four months as interim Manager, Eric Vanderwerf and wife, Cassandra, are now the new owners of Independent Grocer in Port Elgin (Saugeen Shores).
“We can’t even begin to tell you how excited we are to move here,” said Eric and Cassandra Vanderwerf.
Together, they bring considerable experience in the grocery business to their new location. Eric, with 15 years of experience, has been manager of the Independent store in Ingersoll while Cassandra has also been in the business for the past 10 years.
“My mom used to camp in Port Elgin in the summer years ago,” Eric says, “and we are looking forward to moving here permanently. Everyone has been so welcoming and we are anxious to be a permanent part of the community.”
The Vanderwerfs said that there won’t be any changes and service will remain the same. “It’s a super staff and we’ll continue to provide the same great service to the community.”
Eric Vanderwerf had several opportunities to take over stores in Toronto but declined. “When this chance came up, we just felt this was the perfect place to raise our kids,” said Eric. The couple has two children, Alexis (11) and Tyler (8). “They can hardly wait to move here,” says the couple. “Tyler loves to fish and Alexis is crazy about horses.
The couple is currently looking for a new home in the community but, until they find one, they are commuting from London.