Sherman grocery store returns to its roots
SHERMAN — Graham’s Market, 104 Church St., Sherman, is a grocery store that was originally established in 1969 as a Quality Market, was later taken over by Jeff and Jody Mack in 2004, and closed in 2018 for personal reasons.
Graham’s Market is now open.
“By re-opening this grocery store, the Sherman community can enjoy fresh produce once again,” said County Executive PJ Wendel. “I applaud all of the agencies involved in making this happen.”
The closure of the store created a “food desert” due to the fact that the closest grocery stores offering fresh produce were 10 miles from Sherman. The population of Sherman consists of a large contingent of senior citizens and young families, both of whom have limited access to transportation and therefore have limited access to nutritional food choices with the absence of a local grocery store. Responding to this need, Mark Graham left his successful construction business of 30 years and pursued acquiring the closed grocery store, which took almost three years. Graham is continuing the family tradition bringing the recipes and history from his father and grandfather who had the original “Graham’s Market” and “Bill’s IGA” on Sherman’s Main Street.
“Many residents requested that the village take action to see that the grocery store is reopened,” said Colleen Meder, Sherman mayor. “We committed extensive hours to supporting Mark Graham in this endeavor, and though we are facing many challenges due to COVID at the moment, we are optimist that Graham’s Market will increase traffic in downtown Sherman. With the opening of Graham’s Market residents are overjoyed that they can now purchase healthy foods locally.”
The Chautauqua County Industrial Development Agency, in collaboration with Five Star Bank and Southern Tier West, provided a financing package for the purchase and re-opening of this sole grocery store located in the village of Sherman in late 2019, at which time Graham moved ahead with the project to purchase and renovate the facility as a local grocery store. The Sherman Chamber of Commerce President, Debra Sanders, also provided a letter in support of the project.
“This is great news for the Sherman community,” said Mark Geise, Deputy County Executive for Economic Development/Chief Executive Officer of the County of Chautauqua Industrial Development Agency. “I’m glad the CCIDA could provide its assistance in bringing this project to fruition, and I’m grateful to Five Star Bank and Southern Tier West for partnering with us.”