Buc-ee's Attracts Loyal Crowd

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    NEWSLETTERS

    In Bastrop, many people have been heading to the Buc-ee's convenience store since it opened almost two years ago. (Published Thursday, Aug 14, 2014)

    In Bastrop, many people have been heading to the Buc-ee's convenience store since it opened almost two years ago.

    In the sprawling, 56,000-square-foot store, there is plenty of food and plenty of choices. For example, the store has 20 different trail mixes and more than 40 fueling stations.

    And its customers keep coming back, like Stasia Viator.

    "Probably at least 100 times, and we usually come here one for the restrooms," said Viator.
    The general manager is used to hearing that.

    "This a travel center, or you might want to call it 'gastination.' It is a place to come get gas or anything else you may need when you are traveling," said general manager Richard Whitmore.

    Buc-ee's is packed, but not everyone is happy they are there.

    "Business is terrible," said Sarah Chalmers, who owns Tracy's Drive In Grocery.

    Tracy's Drive In Grocery has been in her family for 60 years, and it is close by. But she can't beat the prices that Buc-ee's has to offer.

    They count on customers who have been going there for decades.

    "We have talked about closing. You want to hang on. We are a little grocery store, a mom-and-pop," added Chalmers.

    But as she contemplates her future, some stores that offer other products are seeing more more traffic.

    "They stop on the highway. And that gives them time to check out restaurants, to see downtown, and because of that, I think I have actually seen an increase," said Phyllis Bartsch-Powell, who owns Maxines Café.