A grocery store serving Fort Myers Beach residents and visitors for 22 years has closed permanently.
The supermarket took to Facebook to show some of the final images and updates of the space prior to their departure.
“It’s been a steady store all these years, I’ve been on this beach probably 17 years now and its been a staple here,” said Fort Myers Beach resident Gary Bottari. “We hate to see it disappear.”
Fort Myers Beach resident Miffie Greer said she was upset by the news of the store’s closing and was an avid shopper at Topps Supermarket.
“Totally sudden and we were just really upset, particularly those of us who live near used it all the time,” Greer said.
The Carney’s leased the property for more than 20 years with several extension options, and said they were saddened when the property owner took them off the lease.
“We had no plans of closing down any time soon and … he wanted us out,” Carney said.
Carney took a walk down memory lane as he prepared to close the grocery store.
“(It’s) bittersweet as we closed up the last two days, got everything out of here,” Carney said. “(To) see our legacy, something we created, we built from scratch.”
What will come next for the space on Estero Boulevard?
“Lots of gossip,” Greer said. “The gossip includes a Publix north, it included that they’re gonna shut down the other Publix and open a great big one here.”
The building had rezoning requests for a two-story building in 2008, but nothing followed. No new building permits have been filed, but Greer said “we have no idea but everyone is dying to know.”
Greer remembered the store fondly and said she’s sad to see it close.
“They’re just friendly, they were just a friendly friendly hometown grocery store,” Greer said.
After the chapter of Topps came to a close, Carney said he’s “proud of the legacy we left on this beach.”
WINK News reached out to the property owner and management company Thursday, but have yet to get a response.