Chevy Chase Supermarket, a family-owned grocery store for nearly 60 years, will close in April.
Brothers and co-owners Jason and Kevin Kirsch announced the closure on Facebook Tuesday morning.
“Without the support of our dedicated employees and this community, we would not have prospered through the years. We are grateful,” Jason Kirsch wrote in a statement. “However, we are now facing the inherent risk associated with leasing space, and we are compelled to share this news in order for our community and long-time, loyal employees to plan accordingly.”
Bernard Freedman started the store in 1958.
Jason and Kevin Kirsch are the third generation involved with the store. Their father, Walter, joined the store in 1963. Walter Kirsch’s sister married one of Bernard’s sons, according to a history on the store’s website.
The store lost its lease in the midst of a planned multi-phase redevelopment project that would place three mixed-use buildings along the intersection of Connecticut Avenue and Manor Road in Chevy Chase.
That project expects to break ground in the spring and will be anchored by another grocery store, which has not yet been named by property owner Chevy Chase Land Company.
“We would like nothing more than to continue to serve our neighborhood and to keep our more than 40 employees,” Kevin Kirsch wrote. “Our efforts to identify a new location are ongoing, and we value your continued patronage as we investigate alternatives. As we close these doors, we anticipate another set of doors opening.”
The store was known for its excellent service, personal touch and quirky Facebook posts. One recent post read: “Contest. One lucky friend will win a gift card to our store for $45.67 plus 1.3 salad dressings AND a frozen pizza. The contest starts after we get 23.4 different friends to respond to the following very important question that kept me up all night. Chicken Parmesan. Which is the correct way to serve it? With the sauce on top of the cheese or the cheese on top of the sauce.”
The store was also known for staying open under almost any weather conditions. During the blizzard in 2016, the Kirsch brothers and 11 employees spent the night at the store and posted a video of them bowling with turkeys.
The news was posted on Facebook at about 8 a.m.—and by 8:30 there were already more than 40 comments. Wrote one patron: “Several years ago, you offered free ice cream to kids with a good report card. My daughters were excited at the prospect, and brought in their report cards. To our astonishment, you did not give them each an ice cream on a stick—you gave them each a full carton of ice cream to take home in the flavors of their choice, plus the toppings to make sundaes. Thank you for your generosity and for that fantastic memory that will stay with them.”
This story was updated at 12:10 p.m. to correct the connection between Jason and Kevin Kirsch and the store’s founder, Bernard Freedman.