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Local Grocery, Hardware Stores Brace for Winter Whiteout Warning

After the National Weather Service issued a Blizzard warning for the Chicago area, local grocery and hardware stores are getting a rush of customers.

Today's severe winter weather warning has sent many villagers straight to the local grocery and hardware stores to stock up on necessities.

Dan Junis, meat manager at said people are stocking up on water, milk, "basically all of the staples." He said villagers bought more chicken than anything in his department. "I had enough to last me until tomorrow, and I was already almost out at noon," said Junis. Over in the produce department, Junis said shoppers are buying cabbage and potatoes the quickest.

If enough snow falls to close down schools, offices and other area businesses, Lagen's said it will remain open. "The store manager only lives about three blocks away, so it makes it nice...she can open the store." Junis said he expects it to be busy again tomorrow, then heading into the later afternoon and evening as people make their way home, he expects business to slow down a bit.

Junis said from his 38 years in the grocery business, he's seen the varius shopping situations. "For the holidays, they know what they're going to do, but when (inclement) weather comes, they just buy," said Junis.

A larger supermarket in the village that's part of a chain of stores is more confident about their stock during a blizzard warning.  manager John Pappas said he's seeing a jump in meat and produce sales, but that he's not worried about running out of food because "we never run out of anything." Pappas said, "We have eight stores, we have our own warehouse, we're pretty well-stocked always."

There's no surprise that area hardware stores said residents are grabbing various ice melters the most. " I did sell out of most of them. I had to go out today and make a special run to pick up 100-50 lb bags," said Gary Sircher manager of Evergreen Park Ace Hardware. He said the store sold out of snow blowers earlier today. Sircher, who lives in the village, said Evergreen Park Ace Hardware will be open for business whether or not the storm sweeps the village this week.

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