The Times Journal & Russell County News
Tuesday, Apr. 15, 2014 — RUSSELL SPRINGS & JAMESTOWN, KENTUCKY — russellcounty.net
Get online news updates FREE - Subscribe:  [?]
Google

Locals eating out less, shopping for bargains as prices rise
In May 1-7 issue
By Derek Aaron & Cody York
Times Journal Reporter & Intern




ABOVE: Stock on the shelves at God's Food Pantry sometimes is running low as prices for food increase.

RUSSELL SPRINGS - With gas prices in Russell County steamrolling toward the $4 mark, many people have been hit hard in their pockets and are having trouble affording even everyday necessities such as food.

"I spend at least $100 dollars a week on groceries and $150 on gas," said Jackie Passmore, a customer at Kroger in Russell Springs. "These prices are outrageous."

Susie Smith, who works at Kroger, said she has a plan to try and save money while doing her grocery shopping.

"I go for bargains, discounts and markdowns whenever I can," she said. "I try to stretch what I have and buy things that will make more full meals instead of frozen, single-serve entrees." She also said she is patronizing restaurants less and doing more cooking at home.

That seems to have a following. David Reese, manager at Kay's Bestway in Jamestown, said he has witnessed a trend of "conservative buying."

"I believe they're cooking at home more," he said. "You can tell they're not eating out as much because they're buying more beans, potatoes and roast."

With the high cost of gas a struggle for many to even be able to make it to the grocery, Reese said Kay's was doing it's best not to raise food prices.

"They've come up a little," he said of the food prices. "We've been holding meat prices steady."

He said he knew his customers were having it rough, so his store was doing whatever it can to accommodate the customer.

One such accommodation is the purchasing of grocery products for customers at sales where the prices are lower. Kay's can then sell the discounted food to the customer.

Reese said he has recently seen an increase in customers at the store as more and more people are deciding to stay at home, rather than burn expensive gasoline in their vehicles

"Used to, people would load up and go to Somerset, Campbellsville, Louisville and Lexington to eat out, but I bet those people are staying at home more, now," he said.

"Our business has been excellent."

Still some are hesitant about spending too much on groceries and opt to stay away.

"We try to stay away from the grocery as often as possible," said Bob Rice, a customer, along with his wife, Judy, at Kroger. "We do this so we aren't tempted to buy things we don't need."

The Rice's said they hunt for bargains and always shop for cheaper items.

"We just bought Big K pop instead of the name brand," he said.

Tina Begley has also found herself buying more conservatively at the grocery.

"I try to cut out things I don't need, especially more expensive items," she said. She said she also buys generic or store brand versions of more higher-priced items to help save money "before going broke."

Another dollar saver would be Skaggs' Glass and Gifts on Bernard Ridge in Russell Springs.

At the store, Joel and Shella Skaggs offer a variety of items such as salvaged food and drinks, flowers, books, toys, pocket knives and crafts for an inexpensive price.

"I'd say our businesses had picked up recently," said Shella. "People are looking more and more for stuff they can afford."

She said people are looking for items that are used and less expensive, rather than pay a higher full price.

At Skaggs', depending upon the item, prices tend to be at least 50 percent less than what you could find them for in larger, retail outlets.

Shella said the store does its best business on Saturday, when more people brave the high gas prices, and head out to do their errands and shopping.

The Skaggs said they wondered how high fuel prices would have to get before people began to seriously curb their driving.

"But people aren't going to walk," Joel said. "I know I'm not."

Shella said she thought people would continue driving, but cut back on other things in their life.

Barbara Zimmerman, another Kroger patron, said the prices were extra hard on the retired population or anyone with a fixed income. Some may even have to choose whether to fill their medication or choose to eat.

Under situations such as this, God's Food Pantry in Russell Springs can become a major asset to the home.

At the pantry, people can come in, answer a few short questions on paper and then if they meet the criteria are eligible for both perishable and non-perishable food items for free.

Margaret Thrasher, overseer of the pantry for nearly two decades, said it couldn't stay open without the donations of money and food it receives from individuals and area churches.

Thrasher said the pantry had yet to seen an influx of people coming to the pantry for food because of high gas prices and other expenses just yet.

"Our numbers have stayed about the same recently," she said.

She said the pantry most often helps transients and people who have recently moved to the area and are still trying to get their feet on the ground, financially.

According to pantry worker Kim Reynolds, the pantry has helped 29 people in April.

Reynolds said for families with children, the biggest necessities are milk, bread and eggs. Also, he said a person must prove they have a child to obtain these foods.

Thrasher said the pantry also helps a lot of elderly people with fixed incomes in the community get their food.

Dorothy Porter, a worker at the pantry, said she believed the high cost of gasoline would eventually force more people in the county to look to alternate food sources for their families, such as the pantry.

So, as the price of gas soars to record-highs each day, Russell Countians are being forced to make an unthinkable decision: gasoline in the tank or food in the belly.
Content Management Powered by CuteNews
SUBSCRIBE to The Times Journal: CLICK HERE

SPONSORED LINKS


Publish Yourself PUBLISH YOURSELF
You can publish news about your group or organization directly to our site, using your computer.
CLICK HERE
Laker Band LAKER BAND
Visit the award-winning official web site for the Russell County Marching Band.
CLICK HERE
Lake Cumberland Web Cams LIVE WEB CAMS
Views of Lake Cumberland as it is right now, from a number of web cams.
CLICK HERE
Lake Cumberland LAKE CUMBERLAND
lakecumberland.com
Official site for Lake Cumberland with everything for the lake visitor and fisherman.
CLICK HERE
The Times Journal is a weekly newspaper issued on Thursdays. It was first published on October 13, 1949, by Andrew J. and Terry Norfleet.
-
P.O. Box 190
120 Wilson St.
Russell Springs KY 42642
Phone: 270-866-3191
Fax: 270-866-3198
Russell County News is a weekly newspaper issued on Saturdays, and is mailed free to every address in Russell County, Ky. It was first published on February 1, 1913.
-
404 Monument Square
Jamestown KY 42629
Phone: 270-343-5700
Publisher:
David Davenport
(publisher@tjrcn.com)
Managing Editor:
Greg Wells
(editor@tjrcn.com)
News & Sports Editor:
Derek Aaron
(sports@tjrcn.com)
Advertising Manager:
Stephanie Smith
(ads@tjrcn.com)
Business Manager:
Kim Haydon
(business@tjrcn.com)
Production Manager:
Renee Daffron
(people@tjrcn.com)
Jamestown Office:
Kim Graham
(rcnoffice@tjrcn.com)
PUBLIC MEETINGS
Members of the public may attend meetings. Boards or agencies may schedule other meetings at special times, but are required to notify the public.
FISCAL COURT: 2nd Monday of month, 6 p.m. in the Courthouse
RUSSELL SPRINGS CITY: 2nd Thursday of month, 6 p.m. in the City Hall Municipal Room
JAMESTOWN CITY: 3rd Thursday of month, 6 p.m. in basement meeting room at City Hall
SCHOOL BOARD: 3rd Monday of month, 6:30 p.m., Board of Education office in Jamestown
LIBRARY BOARD: 2nd Tuesday of month, 5 p.m. at Jamestown Library
AIRPORT BOARD: 1st Tuesday of month, 5 p.m. at Airport
TOURISM COMMISSION: 2nd Wednesday of month, 12:30 p.m. at Tourism Office
CHAMBER OF COMMERCE: 3rd Tuesday of month, noon at The Cove restaurant
LOCAL & AREA
NEWS SITES
The links below open new windows. We are not responsible for the content of the sites.
Laker Country WJRS
(Russell Springs)
lakercountry.com/
WKYM-1017 (Monticello)
wkym.com/
Adair Progress (Columbia)
adairprogress.com/
Casey County News (Liberty)
caseynews.net/
Clinton County News (Albany)
clintonnews.net/
Cumberland County News (Burkesville)
burkesville.com/ccn/
Wayne County Outlook (Monticello)
wcoutlook.com/
Somerset
Commonwealth-Journal
somerset-kentucky.com/
Danville
Advocate-Messenger
amnews.com/
Lexington Herald-Leader
kentucky.com/
Louisville Courier-Journal
courier-journal.com/
WKYT-TV, Lexington
wkyt.com/
WBKO-TV, Bowling Green
wbko.com/
USEFUL SITES
The links below open new windows. We are not responsible for the content of the sites.

RUSSELL CO. OFFICIALS
RUSSELL COUNTY SCHOOLS
RUSSELL CO. LIBRARY

LAKE CUMBERLAND
STATE RESORT PARK
TV LISTINGS:
Choose your service and provider
SOMERSET MOVIE SHOWTIMES

.