From General Store To Food Market
In 1945 Orville and Pearl Ernst bought a simple business from Roy Ebersole that has forever changed the history of numerous people’s lives. They set out to bring a business to the Charlton/ Clear Spring area to provide goods for everyday families and the local farmers. The store sold general merchandise, tools, boots, groceries, and so much more. It was just what this little community needed. In January of 1954, Greg was born, and the store moved up the road to its current location at the corner of Dam #5 Road and MD Route 56. At this location, the store had gas pumps and still had everything that a general store at the time should have. It was the heartbeat of this small but mighty community. Orville and Pearl were revered as two of the greatest people that many had ever met. Their big hearts made sure that no one would do without, and as a young boy, Greg learned by working alongside his parents that the value of doing for others is the measure of what makes a person whole. In 1972 Greg graduated high school and, in 1973, took off for Toledo, Ohio, to attend the national meat cutting school. After graduation, his vision was to come back and work alongside his dad and expand the store to also sell fresh cut meats. In 1975 they expanded the store to most of what we know now; the back cutting room was added, along with the area where the deli/meat counter are now. Greg and his father had some of the best years working alongside one another, building their dream while gaining the trust and respect of the community. In 1980 George came on board and was able to fit right in with Greg and his father and continue to grow the store even more. With George came the fried chicken and an expanded deli vision. George learned so much from Orville; he still speaks of and uses that wisdom to this very day. Sadly in 1987, Orville passed; his legacy still carries through this store from wall to wall and ceiling to floor. His kindness and big heart are instilled in Greg.
Greg and George kept things moving forward after that and, in 1995, built the warehouse onto the back of the store and the current cooking facility that we use for caterings. In 2004 Ernst Market then lost Pearl, and her values of being frugal and making the most of what you have to work with are values that we still use to this day. Finally, in 2008, Greg and George accomplished their largest remodel and produced the current look that you all see today. The extended front end area and produce section, along with the new cases and coolers, make this place what it is today. Greg and George are quite the team, they are not only partners in business, but they are best friends. There have been many many people who have worked here over the years and not only had a job but made them into good people. The values immediately soak into you. One thing I think they all can say is that you come here looking for an opportunity and leave with a lifetime of lessons and knowledge. When Greg was asked what he enjoyed most during his 47 years, he answered…
“I have been beyond blessed to have great people to work with, my family and friends have always stood by my side through all these years and I am honored to have been able to serve this community”