- 446 S. Washington Ave
- Kankakee, IL 60901
- (815) 935-2040
When you grow up in a small town, the closest supermarket isn’t always just around the corner. In our case, the closest supermarket is a half hour away. My family doesn’t have the luxury of deciding what they want for dinner then running to the store to get it. I grew up in a time where there were no hypermarkets and supermarkets were a once a month trip. The only one of those big chains that is still around today is Jewel-Osco.
Jewel-Osco started life and Jewel Food Stores and Osco Drugs. Somewhere along the line, they merged to become Jewel-Osco. The weird thing was, they were almost always in the same building and connected. Osco was more like Walgreens with some items and Jewel did the food thing. When other supermarkets started doing pharmacy’s along with some merchandise, Jewel and Osco just merged together. I remember how this store used to be set up and it always seemed dumb. There were two separate entrances and a hallway connecting the two stores, but you had to pay for each stores merchandise in their store. Now, pretty much all Jewel-Osco stores are in the same building even though both brands usually have their own management teams and marketing identity.
Jewel is pretty unique to Illinois although you can find stores in eastern Iowa and Northwest Indiana. The homebase is in Melrose Park.
The Jewel-Osco store in Kankakee is located on Washington Street sort of behind the downtown area and near the river. The neighborhood around the store isn’t the greatest yet I’ve never heard of anyone having a problem with shopping there.
On this particular trip to Kankakee, we had two missions. Get dinner and get groceries. Normally, my parents would shop at the new Super Walmart on the edge of town, but Jewel had some sale items they wanted. The big thing they were going after were spiral hams. They were something like eight bucks off. Just last month, my mom picked up three twelve plus pound turkeys at the same store even though I don’t think she’s ever cooked a turkey in her life. They were too good of a deal though.
Jewel is owned by SuperValue and the house brand products are President’s Choice. It’s been so long since I’ve actually shopped at a Jewel that I really have no idea what the products are like. I know tonight, my mom picked up some really good deals on chicken and ham, but other than that, the staple items she bought were all name brand and pricing seemed consistent with other shopping centers.
Jewel, like Dominick’s (review HERE) is another one of those stores that I grew up with and just assumed were everywhere. Kankakee now has most of the national chains and other options. Walmart has put in two Supercenters in the last year and K-Mart has had a Supercenter in the area for over a decade. There’s a Kroger in town that just remodeled and an Ultra Foods which has moved in since I moved away into an old Eagle store. Jewel has been the choice of my family for a number of years. The new Walmart is changing habits, but they still make occasional trips in to town when the sales are too hard to pass up.