Feeding Our SoulsBlock Number: 189
McDowell Quilt Trail
JB’S MARKET HOSTS TWO QUILT BLOCKS
Rebecca and Paul Dove, local owners of J.B.’s Market, are the hosts of two quilt blocks installed on the grocery store on November 3, 2015. The store is located at 1270 East Court Street, Marion, N.C. and quite well-known in the eastern part of McDowell County. Its history dates back over five decades.
The store was first built in the late 1960’s or early 1970’s by Willard Brooks and operated under the name Willard’s Quality Foods. By 1978 when Rebecca’s parents moved the family from the Hankins area, the store had changed its name to Thrifty Mart.
Their new home was in sight of the Thrifty Mart and walking distance to the new Eastfield Elementary school where she and her brother began attending.
Rebecca says “from the store parking lot I can still see the street we used to live on and I remember as a young girl walking in the snow to buy milk, bread, popcorn and frozen pizza because we lived so close by.” By January 1989 she was old enough to work there, convenient as it was within walking distance. By then the store had changed names again, to a chain known as Lowes Foods. She started as a part-time cashier and eventually worked her way up the ladder to be the Interim Store Manager.
In 1995 Bob and Naomi Frisbee bought the business, renaming it to Frisbee’s Galaxy. It was her first experience working in a locally owned independent grocery store and found it was operated very different than a chain store and a difficult adjustment for her to make.
A chain store has their shelves stocked constantly as the corporation pays the bills. An independent grocer has to pay his own bills and thus needs to time his purchases accordingly. Although still working off and on part time at the store she attended Appalachian State University and in 1996 obtained her Real Estate Brokerage license.
In September 2003 James and Jane Brabson bought the business, and as she had always done through the years, Rebecca came back to work at the store once again. During the following years she “learned all I could about running my own business.”
An opportunity came up to purchase the business and on June 28, 2015 she became the new owner, an official ribbon cutting being held recently. Rebecca states that “I just could not allow another person to own what had become so personal to me. Coming back to work in this store no matter the owner, was always like coming home.” Now her own children come in to help her at work as a family business along with the other thirty-seven employees.
Rebecca had always felt the store needed to join the Quilt Trail and both the block patterns she chose relay her heartfelt emotions for the grocery business.
Block #188 “Feeding Our Community” is four-by-four foot and features one of the four main food groups in each corner: meat, dairy, vegetable and fruit. It is highlighted in the center by a star reminiscent of the Galaxy logo and placed on the left side of the storefront. It is indicative of how much the store has been a huge part of feeding and providing needs to so many in the community through the years.
Block #189 “Feeding Our Souls”, also a four-by-four foot, block portrays a dove flying over the mountaintops, Carolina blue skies in the background. It represents the feelings of gratitude and joyful memories she has, having grown up and met her best friends and mentors in the area. She even met her husband while working there when the store manager at the time had a friend come in for lunch and introduced them. The store manager was later their Best Man!
The blocks were installed by volunteers Mike Lucas, Alan Scholl and Jean Perusse. Jill Lucas presented a Certificate of Authenticity for each block to Rebecca, whose husband Paul was unable to attend the occasion, however the employees present joined in for the photo.
For information on the McDowell Quilt Trail visit www.mcdowellquilttrail.org or call Mike Lucas at 828-443-6476. Traditional or custom patterns and sizes can be designed to fit the story your block has to tell. Information may also be obtained at the McDowell Arts Council Association, under which the non-profit Quilt trail operates.