GROCERY SHOPPING: Weekly West Seattle check-in

This is the seventh consecutive Saturday for our weekly check-in on grocery shopping at West Seattle’s standalone supermarkets. No big changes this week – but at least one is coming up next week: As we reported Thursday, West Seattle Thriftway (WSB sponsor) is going to require face coverings for shoppers starting Monday (May 4th). Don’t want to wear one? Thriftway also has curbside pickup – see how it works via the store’s website.

Let us know if you’ve seen anything new in your shopping! (Here’s how last week’s discussion went.) And if you need to check hours, our original list of those is still up to date.

89 Replies to "GROCERY SHOPPING: Weekly West Seattle check-in"

  • Jennifer M May 2, 2020 (9:22 am)

    Thank YOU!!

  • Steve May 2, 2020 (10:23 am)

    I hear we are in this together and then see about 10-15% of the shoppers intent on spreading coronavirus because wearing a protective mask is too hard for them.  You don’t want to wear a mask?  Too bad – go home and let the rest of us do our shopping as safely as we can.The rest of the grocery stores need to join Thriftway and Costco to make their stores as safe as possible for the rest of us and their own employees.  I’m looking at you Admiral Safeway.  

    • Zac May 2, 2020 (11:25 am)

      The thing that gets under my skin more than anything is the people who still are pawing through produce with their bare hands… yesterday at Safeway I waited my turn 3 times to get produce and watched people touch everything to find the perfect item for themselves. Pick one and commit to it. I ended up walking away every time, and there’s nothing the employees can say. If they can require face masks, they should be able to kindly request folks not rummage through entire stacks of tomatoes with bare hands potentially tainting everything.

      • Stay well May 2, 2020 (11:38 am)

        Yes, this is not the time for needing to pick the most perfect produce.  I committed weeks ago to a policy of taking a moment to scan for the item I want, and if I pick it up, it’s mine.  Even if the other side has a blemish, it’s still mostly usable and better to take what you touch and not spread this virus.  

        And anyway, I’ve learned that the scarred fruit is often the sweetest.

      • Mmr May 2, 2020 (12:34 pm)

        From the CDC: Coronaviruses are generally thought to be spread from person to person through respiratory droplets. Currently, there is no evidence to support transmission of COVID-19 associated with food. Before preparing or eating food it is important to always wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds for general food safety. Throughout the day use a tissue to cover your coughing or sneezing, and wash your hands after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing, or going to the bathroom. Wash your produce under running water and it is unlikely to cause a problem. 

        • Anna May 3, 2020 (9:42 am)

          Yes, MMR this is not spreading through produce. Relaxing our judgement of others will lower our stress which in turn will help strengthen our immune system. If you are concerned, just pick up your produce with a bag and wash it thoroughly. 

          • Stay well May 3, 2020 (1:34 pm)

            It’s better to error on the side of caution, for everyones sake, during a pandemic.  It’s not judgemental to share information that may help keep people safe.

            There are many things we can do to try to mitigate the spread. Why not try to help how we can?

          • Stay well May 3, 2020 (2:25 pm)

            ‘Shop with your eyes, not your fingers

            Deering said the riskiest areas will be those with items people touch the most, like salad bars (which should be avoided these days) and the produce section. “Make these your last stops in the store to avoid transferring the virus, if present, to other areas,” she said.

            Typically, picking produce involves touching and poking around for desired ripeness, but these days it’s best to avoid touching anything you don’t have to and use your eyes to dictate what’s fresh. For example, avoid fresh foods with obvious bruises or brown spots. If the food comes in plastic packaging, be mindful to touch just the one you want to select.’


          • Anna May 3, 2020 (2:25 pm)

            To me, using the word “pawing” when describing people searching through fruits and vegetables is a bit judgmental. This was not sharing of information, as all the information out there says that regular produce washing is sufficient to prevent the spread of coronavirus. This was a complaint that really does not seem to have any scientific backing. 

      • AMD May 2, 2020 (12:44 pm)

        To be fair, as much looking as you can do with your eyeballs, sometimes that REAL gross rotten spot is on the underside and there’s just NO WAY to see it until you pick it up.  Finding a place to put it or a friendly produce employee to hand it off to is easier said than done.  Sometimes you just have to make the best decisions you can with what you have in front of you.  Let’s not be too harsh or judgmental of your fellow shoppers in instances like these.  It’s best practice to wash your produce when you get home to prevent e. coli and a host of other illnesses anyway.  Food borne illness is not sheltering in place just because there’s a shinier disease on the block.

        • Stay well May 2, 2020 (1:50 pm)

          Yes, that is totally fair. If it’s truly rotten on the other side, I would also set it aside with that side up or notify a produce worker. But I haven’t been running into that so much. If it just isn’t perfect, I’m taking what I pick up.

          I’m of the perspective that the more reasonable actions we can take individually to try and mitigate the spread, the better. So just sharing a perspective and ideas here. 

          Although, the virus is spread mostly through droplets from person to person contact, if someone touches a surface containing the virus, and then touches produce, and then another person comes along and touches that same produce, and then touches their face… you see it’s another way this thing can spread.  But yes, if people are careful about not touching their face, washing their hands, washing produce when they get home, disinfecting surfaces, etc. it shouldn’t be a big problem.

          Having said that, it’s hard not to be a bit surprised when you see someone wearing a mask over their mouth but then hold up fresh broccoli and literally touch it to their nose to smell it,  multiple times.

      • Sarah May 2, 2020 (2:20 pm)

        That’s why you wash your produce like you wash your hands! Someone always has something to complain about!

        • Stay well May 2, 2020 (5:29 pm)

          Sounds like you’re trying to find something to complain about right now! Why so exclamative?!

          Pressing broccoli to your nose and then setting it back down for the next person to buy, is not only unnecessary, but not something people want to see right now. Not a big deal, just sharing something that surprised me.

          Sorry if you’re the broccoli sniffer and I called you out.

      • Guy May 2, 2020 (4:47 pm)

        Too bad, I like to make sure the blackberries and strawberries I buy are mold free. Last week I was inspecting them (and they’re in plastic boxes mind you) while wearing a mask, and a shopper asked me not to touch them. How about you F-off, wash your food before you eat it, and stop being such a Karen?

        • Stay well May 2, 2020 (5:38 pm)

          Me too, but I usually pick up the plastic container and look at it from all sides to check for mold.  

          Sorry someone said that to you though.  An online discussion and sharing perspectives and concerns is one thing. Confronting someone in the store regarding their shopping is another thing.

          People are really concerned right now, and likely more sensitive than usual about things like this.

        • J. May 2, 2020 (7:00 pm)

          You lost me at “Karen.” Of course, the use of “Karen” was started by a “Guy”!

      • Pelicans May 2, 2020 (10:28 pm)

        A simple solution for checking produce, as mentioned in a discussion thread last week, is to take a plastic produce bag, hold it by the bottom and turn it inside out over your hand so the clean inside of it faces out. Then you can use it to pick up and inspect produce, and take the ones you like. Seems this would also work with bagged and boxed things like salad, tomatoes, strawberries, etc. No smelling, though.  Jmho.

        • Alki Heights May 3, 2020 (4:06 pm)

          Everybody read PELICANS comment. Please! 

          • Patient May 4, 2020 (6:43 am)

            PELICAN – I do the same thing with the untouched/inside of a veggie bag while shopping for produce.   I also use the veggie bag to open freezer and refrigerated doors and while punching in my customer number at checkstand.    Reminder to folks that may start using veggie bags: please don’t leave your used gloves/wipes/masks/veggie bags in the grocery cart or hand basket for the employees or other customers to deal with.Ideas on how to reuse the couple veggie bags that you may have used in the store:      I  keep a few used veggie bags in the car to reuse as a makeshift glove when I fuel up so I dont have to touch anything with my bare hand.  I keep a couple extra used ones in my pocket while out walking to pick up a bit of trash.

    • aa May 2, 2020 (12:33 pm)

      Not wearing a mask does not automatically = spreading the virus

      • Steve May 2, 2020 (4:59 pm)

        You’re splitting hairs.  Wearing masks drastically reduces the changes of passing the virus to others and not wearing one puts others at higher risk. Wear your mask.

        • Jethro Marx May 2, 2020 (5:44 pm)

          This is “common sense” rather than science, right Steve? Or was there a non-anecdotal study on the efficacy of whatever random homemade mask or hanky fold-pattern is cool on Facebook right now? I know the CDC recommended masks, but they sure didn’t make the same claims you’re making. 

          • Anna May 3, 2020 (9:38 am)

            There are definitely studies that question the efficacy of cloth masks in preventing the spread of coronavirus. No one out there is saying that not wearing a cloth mask puts others at higher risk. The virus particles are so small, it seems they can get around/through homemade masks.

          • Steve May 3, 2020 (1:00 pm)

            Jethro – are you suggesting we shouldn’t wear masks?  Or what?  What is your point?Here is the CDC site: say wear your mask to slow the spread of the virus.  It doesn’t get much simpler. 

          • Anna May 3, 2020 (2:28 pm)

            I think Jethro was challenging the comment that “wearing masks drastically reduces the chance of passing the virus to others.” This simply is not true, especially with cloth masks. 

          • Stay well May 3, 2020 (4:34 pm)

            Anna, if that simply isn’t true, why is the CDC recommending people wear them?

            Why would the experts on disease control make a recommendation, if it had no basis?


          • Anna May 3, 2020 (7:22 pm)

            Stay well, this is an interesting article! It lists the other reasons the CDC recommends wearing a cloth mask: it helps people remember we are in the middle of a public health crisis, shows that you care about your neighbor, creates a feeling of solidarity. Every thing I have read clearly states that they really don’t know if homemade cloth masks help prevent the spread of coronavirus. Of course if you are sneezing or coughing, anything in front of your face would contain that, but people who are coughing and sneezing are not going out right now anyways.

          • Stay well May 3, 2020 (9:12 pm)

            Everything I have read in the last month has indicated it is advisable to wear a mask or face covering, because it will help mitigate the spread. There has been research on how effective various masks are, and of course efficacy is going to vary greatly depending on the mask material, how it is worn, etc. But, the bottom line is, something is better than nothing and it’s worth doing, if it helps at least some of the time.

            People sometimes cough and sneeze unexpectedly, even when they aren’t otherwise symptomatic. You can get a tickle in hour nose or throat. Also, this virus is thought to be spread possibly even just by talking near someone.


            Why have you been so bent on arguing they aren’t effective enough? Isn’t it more important we cooperatively do whatever we can to help prevent the spread of this? Why don’t you focus your energy on sharing what masks ARE most effective? That might be more helpful than just being argumentative.

          • Stay well May 3, 2020 (9:26 pm)

            … also I don’t know where you read that other stuff you mentioned, because I’m not seeing that on the site I linked to.

            You said this is what was said:

            ‘It helps people remember we are in the middle of a public health crisis, shows that you care about your neighbor, creates a feeling of solidarity’

            Here is what I see it actually says:

            ‘CDC also advises the use of simple cloth face coverings to slow the spread of the virus and help people who may have the virus and do not know it from transmitting it to others.  Cloth face coverings fashioned from household items or made at home from common materials at low cost can be used as an additional, voluntary public health measure.’

          • Stay well May 3, 2020 (9:41 pm)

            And anyway, if those things happen to be a secondary benefit to wearing a mask (again, don’t see them mentioned on the CDC website), with the first benefit being that it helps to lessen the spread of the virus, those aren’t bad things.

            Why wouldn’t people want to also show care for their neighbors or act in solidarity with their community at a time like this? Sounds like even more reason to wear one to me.

          • Anna May 4, 2020 (9:30 am)

            I don’t think it is helpful to spread misinformation, as Steve did. Wearing masks does not drastically reduce the spread. In fact, relying too much on masks could actually increase the spread. I think arguments are helpful in threads like these, because sometimes people seem to be outside of reality and science, and judging their neighbors unnecessarily. As a person who thinks critically, I will continue to point out the holes that I see in people’s logic, and continue to respectfully argue my point of view instead of present a view point that I think other people want me to have. Personally, I don’t mind wearing a mask that is effective inside a store or on a subway, but I do not want to wear one outside. I have a young daughter who may have sensory processing issues, and it would be impossible to get her to wear a mask at all, let alone wear a mask properly. I used to live in Riverside County where wearing masks whenever you leave your house is now compulsory, which, honestly, terrifies me. The idea of my daughter not being able to leave the house without me forcefully putting a mask on her keeps me up at night. Even our Governor who seems to err on the side of caution during the pandemic says that the data isn’t there to support a requirement that we all wear masks. Of course we should all do what we can do to, but are we going to wear masks during flu season too, since the flu also kills thousands and thousands of people every year and also spreads asymptomatically through talking? I continue to appreciate all of the respectful debate on here! 

          • Stay well May 4, 2020 (11:13 am)

            This virus is not the typical flu and this situation is not comparable to a flu season. Do you think the whole world is overreacting, and that you know better than leaders all over the world? I’m perplexed how you could be thinking this is just like the flu. I could share more facts and data and stories from medical workers, but I don’t think your listening or believing the information.

            Thanks for sharing your concerns about mask wearing (for you and your daughter) and fears about them being enforced. It sounds hard, and I can hear how stressful that is feeling to you, and wish you the best navigating this time. If it helps to ease your mind, there would be exceptions to requiring masks for some, it’s understood that people with certain medical and mental conditions shouldn’t wear a mask. There are always exceptions. 

            When people are discussing masks and frustrated with those not wearing them, it’s directed at those who don’t have a good reason not to, and just can’t be bothered to do something small to help others. I don’t think frustration is intended at those who have a legitimate reason not to wear one. Though in some situations, it might make better sense for those individuals to not put themselves in public settings during this time. Have others shop for them, for example. 

            This isn’t meant to be a long term reality. It’s just a strategy to help us get through this health crisis, more safely and more quickly.

            Thanks again for sharing your perspective and concerns. I think it’s important different perspectives are shared and talked through, community empathy and awareness is important. Hope you stay well, take care.

          • Stay well May 4, 2020 (11:54 am)

            … also, I’m going to defend Steve here. I don’t believe he was spreading misinformation. He shared information being put forward by scientists, medical experts, and leaders.

            Here’s just one article, where a scientist says, a couple of times, that masks ‘dramatically’ helps reduce the spread of the virus. 


            Can you share your source for stating that relying too much on masks could actually increase the spread? 

            Yes, for those people who cannot follow basic guidelines of not fiddling with their masks, touching their face, not washing their hands, etc, it might not be as effective for them. However, if they would be inclined towards those behaviors anyway, it would stand to reason, they would be just as at risk, wether they wear a mask or not.

            That is not a logical argument… for everyone to not wear a mask, just because a few won’t do it correctly and safely.

          • Jethro Marx May 4, 2020 (2:48 pm)

            The Cambridge study from the article you linked concluded that improvised masks offered wearers little protection and the study’s authors did not recommend their use. Read the study, review the numbers, and conclude differently than the scientists if you like, but it is a real problem for us who are actual scientists if misinformation is spread by making a claim (improvised masks dramatically reduce the chances of spreading respiratory infection) backed up with studies which show the opposite. The point is not, “don’t wear a mask” it’s “don’t claim that wearing an improvised mask is proven to be effective.” If your point is that we shouldn’t worry about the science and wear the mask, fine, I get that. 

          • Stay well May 4, 2020 (4:25 pm)

            Jethro, what you are saying is not accurate.

            The Cambridge study you’re referring to found that, although homemade masks were not as effective as surgical masks, ‘both significantly reduced the number of microorganisms expelled’ and recommends a homemade mask ‘would be better than no protection.’

            Direct quote:

            ‘The median-fit factor of the homemade masks was one-half that of the surgical masks. Both masks significantly reduced the number of microorganisms expelled by volunteers, although the surgical mask was 3 times more effective in blocking transmission than the homemade mask. Our findings suggest that a homemade mask should only be considered as a last resort to prevent droplet transmission from infected individuals, but it would be better than no protection.’

            I’d say (and leading scientists are saying) that this is the time it would make sense to use one as a last resort, since we’re in the midst of a pandemic, and there is a shortage of ppe for medical professionals.

            I’ve never claimed homemade masks are a highly effective mask option.  Just sharing the current recommendations that if many people wear some kind of mask, it will help (some say dramatically) with the spread of the virus.

            Also, the idea with people wearing masks, is more about helping to keep others safe, and others helping to keep you safe. It’s thought to me more effective in preventing transmission, rather than protecting the wearer. But if everyone wears one, this would be the more helpful scenario.

            If you are a scientist in this field, you are out of step with the leading consensus, if you do not agree that they provide some protection. Again, the point is, some protection is better than none, and some experts in the field are stating they believe people wearing face coverings will dramatically help to reduce the spread. If you have a problem with this, take it up with those scientists, your peers, apparently.

            I think you are confusing two things… what is being suggested here is that if all people were to wear a face covering in public (assuming people wear it appropriately) it will dramatically help reduce the spread of the virus. That can still be true, even if the masks themselves aren’t as protective as say a medical grade mask.  Again, some protection is better than none.

            Please don’t misrepresent and confuse the information I have shared.

          • Stay well May 4, 2020 (4:46 pm)

            In my opinion, which is based on all the information and recommendations I’ve been hearing, from many news sources, discussing with various respected medical and science professionals, the helpful thing to do right now, at a minimum, is to wear some kind of mask which covers your nose, mouth, chin, when in public settings like the grocery store. 

            It would be even more helpful, to research which types of masks and materials are most effective, and to wear the most effective mask you can find or make.

            Do you have a problem with this?

          • Anna May 4, 2020 (10:57 pm)

            Hello again!I had a reply all typed out but then I lost it, and am now officially exhausted. Here’s an interesting source: didn’t mean to imply that this virus is just like the flu. It just seems strange to me that people were so unconcerned about their viral impact before all this, even when many many people died because they caught a virus from someone else, and now people are so concerned they are judging their neighbors for doing very human things like picking up several tomatoes before choosing one, or standing too close to someone in the coffee aisle. It seems like fear has taken over in some parts of the US, and it helps calm me down to point out misinformation when I see it. Proper N95 mask wearing in a world where we are not socially distancing may dramatically reduce the spread of coronavirus, but right now, social distancing is dramatically reducing the spread, and they really don’t know about cloth masks. If cloth masks dramatically reduced the spread, they’d probably ditch the social distancing and school closures, and have us all strap one on. Thanks again for all your thoughts!

          • Stay well May 5, 2020 (7:13 am)

            Hey Anna, covid-19 is a new virus that appears to be both highly contagious and a more serious virus than the standard flu (more serious symptoms, long term damage to lungs in some cases), and more deadly. And there isn’t a vaccine or standard of treatment for covid-19 yet. These are some of the reasons people are understandably more concerned about the spread of this virus, than they would be during a regular flu season.  Many people choose to get a flu shot every year, so they have some protection from getting the flu, which is one reason you don’t see people wearing masks every flu season. You also don’t typically hear about people in their 20’s being hospitalized from the flu. This coronavirus has differences from the standard flu.The continual argument about just how effective homemade masks are is exhausted at this point, and not something I’m trying to argue. The bottom line is, everything I have read and heard at this point, indicates any face covering that covers the nose, mouth, and chin, is going to help some in reducing the spread. Helping some is better than not helping at all. It is just one measure we can take, and is not meant to replace other precautionary behavior. We still need to physical distance, and they recommend we keep at least 6’ distance from once another (again this doesn’t guarantee safety either, just a recommendation). That is why people express concern and are alarmed when others stand over them while getting coffee at a grocery store. What you are reading as ‘judgement’ I read as ‘understandable alarm and concern’ when others are behaving in an oblivious or irresponsible way under the current circumstances. People are dying from this virus. Yes, people die from other causes too, but 65,000 people in the US have already died from covid-19 in just a couple months, even with the stay at home measures. It has been reported, that if the stay at home efforts hadn’t been taken, millions of Americans would have died. Millions of Americans do not typically die from the flu over a period of months. That would be devastating. It’s understandable that people are concerned both for themselves and others at this time.Thanks for sharing and considering. Stay well!

          • Munoz May 9, 2020 (5:21 pm)

            Jethro, you are trying to get us to “discuss” this with you, to legitimize your opinion then you lead the discussion where you say something akin to “Well we need to agree to disagree”, “my freedom” or some other blather.Wear the damm mask and just maybe we can see you as someone doing something, anything, for the general public welfare.  Otherwise prepare to have us see you as someone who really doesn’t care about others, who can’t make even the bare minimum effort of inconvenience and as such you are worthy of our unbridled derision and ostracization.

    • Kathy May 2, 2020 (2:31 pm)

      Wash all your fruits and vegetables as well as your hands when you get home. Don’t touch your face. I, for one, cannot tell a ripe pear without touching it. I wear gloves but I don’t think that matters (gloves could be dirty, too). If your pear is starting to get soft right next to the stem it is ready to eat. This is a trick I learned from a produce person at Thriftway. If the pear is hard it can sit on your counter for a month and still not be edible in my opinion. You can’t tell ripeness by just looking at it. This reminds me of the story of a girl who thought you could ripen a watermelon by thumping it. No, you have to thump a bunch until you find one that sounds hollow.

    • DRB May 9, 2020 (6:10 pm)


  • Sue T. May 2, 2020 (10:51 am)

    For what it’s worth, I’ve noticed that Admiral Safeway has changed its default checkout bags to the single-use plastic bags that were banned by the city a few years ago. Recyclable paper bags are still available for any customers who request them, but single-use plastic is the new normal during the quarantine.

    • Stay well May 2, 2020 (11:41 am)

      I want to encourage people to request paper bags over plastic (better for the environment), and to ask for single bags rather than double, because there is a shortage of paper bags.  Single paper bags are sufficient if you carry them from underneath.   I load up my paper bags to the top and carry them from underneath, and haven’t had one of them break on me yet.

      • Pig May 2, 2020 (10:24 pm)

        Wow, that’s great. Unless you are going to come carry my grocery bags to the car and into the apartment for me, I’m using double bags with handles. Serious kudos to you and your single bags. A true feat. 

    • chemist May 2, 2020 (12:02 pm)

      While paper bags can break down better than plastic, the CO2 emissions of them are so much higher it’s really uncertain what happened with net carbon emissions from the plastic bag ban (when some fraction of folks ended up getting paper bags instead of reuseable).  Seattle did a study of the bag ban, but focused on bags recovered at the transfer stations rather than how many grocery bags stores were using before/after.  2019 article

      Back in 2011, Britain’s Environment Agency conducted a life-cycle assessment of various bag options, looking at every step of the production process. The conclusion? You’d have to reuse a paper bag at least three times before its environmental impact equaled that of a high-density polyethylene plastic bag used only once. And if plastic bags were reused repeatedly, they looked even better.

      • Stay well May 2, 2020 (2:03 pm)

        Really using reusable bags would be best, but most stores aren’t allowing this right now.  In the short-term, I would think using paper bags in an efficient way, as I suggested (using single bags and filling them to the top), instead of plastic bags which according to the article you referenced, can take centuries to decompose, would be the best environmental option, for the short term.

        You can fit quite a bit more into a tall paper bag, than into one of those flimsy plastic bags too.

        • Stay well May 2, 2020 (2:28 pm)

          … my point being, using fewer paper bags, rather than more plastic bags, would hopefully offset the environmental impact of manufacturing paper bags.  Plastic bags are also considered more of a direct danger to wildlife, which concerns me.  

          Thanks for raising this point, I know it’s not a clearcut issue, but the messaging I’ve heard from environmentalists has seemed to lean towards paper bags being a better choice over plastic.  

          It seems an important consideration for which is more environmentally friendly, is how the bags are reused and recycled after use.

      • Frog May 2, 2020 (2:49 pm)

        You can also re-use plastic grocery bags as trash bags instead of buying commercial trash bags.  That makes the humble plastic grocery bag even more efficient.

      • Ice May 3, 2020 (11:04 am)

        Chemist, that is a completely fair critique of paper bags, but the big problem I see with plastic bags is that they get everywhere. Even with the plastic bag ban in effect, they are still all over the place as litter. Paper bags will rot away, but plastic gets buried and gets in the water and ends up in the great garbage patch in the sea. I’ve been cleaning up trash along Longfellow creek and the amount of plastic bags that end up half buried or stuck in trees is kind of astonishing.

        • Chemist May 3, 2020 (3:09 pm)

          I wish for responsible disposal of plastic bags and all other refuse too.  I remember hiking in the grand canyon as a kid and seeing “left-behind 100 years ago” tins at historic sites.  The litter problems, especially around park/natural areas, are certainly related to human habits with many types of materials.

    • Calires May 2, 2020 (6:02 pm)

      You can still use your own bags at Admiral and Jefferson Square Safeway if you bag your own, which I prefer anyway.

  • West Seattle Guy May 2, 2020 (10:52 am)

    Anyone have a recommendation on where masks are for sale?  I ordered one but it’s taking forever to arrive.  I personally am not interested in making one, but those tips might help someone else (hope I get a reply about buying one locally however).

    • David May 2, 2020 (11:40 am)

      West Seattle Thriftway currently has a basket of masks near the checkstands $15 for package of 10

    • Anita May 2, 2020 (11:49 am)

      Splash Fabrics online gets them out quickly. Order 5 and they donate 5.

    • Michelle C. May 2, 2020 (11:50 am)

      Did you try the masks being made locally for donations? They have a new website:
      I can’t recommend them because I didn’t try them, but I saw some masks for sale at Target. They were 10 packs made by Bella and Canvas – they’re made out of t-shirt fabric but are meant to be disposable.
      I’ve been sewing masks for my household, and I was thinking about selling some for donations like the family of Sen. Nguyen but I have to work on my production skills.

      • West Seattle Guy May 2, 2020 (12:03 pm)

        My order is in with neomask. They are a small operation and I got my order in late unfortunately. It will be here soon enough.

      • Dunno May 2, 2020 (5:34 pm)

         Westwood Staples, about a dollar each, but had to buy a pack.

    • Astro May 2, 2020 (11:51 am)

      I went to Thriftway a few days ago and noticed at the check out there were mask for sale 10 for $14.99. They were not N95 but still useful.

    • AMD May 2, 2020 (12:48 pm)

      There is post in the WSB Forums about community-made masks for free to the elderly, unemployed, or medical personnel ($5 for everyone else).  It’s a couple weeks old, but may be worth reaching out:  In addition, I’ve seen posts on NextDoor offering free homemade masks.  

    • Spiderman May 2, 2020 (1:22 pm)

      Junction True Value has some cloth masks

    • Dumpling Girl May 2, 2020 (4:20 pm)

      Local Seattle outdoors company Cascade Design is selling reusable masks for $5. They donate $1 from each mask to relief funds. I ordered mine earlier this week and got them today.

    • AW May 2, 2020 (6:06 pm)

      Pike Place Market has a few vendors selling masks!

      I ordered mine through,

      Local… plus SUPER easy website AND arrived within 5 days! 

  • slightly crazy person May 2, 2020 (12:09 pm)

    Re using bags at the grocery stores.  I have been successful at both Thriftway and Junction QFC asking  the checkers to just put everything back in my cart. I then wheel the cart to my car and bag things myself with my reusable bags.  

    • Stay well May 2, 2020 (2:07 pm)

      Good idea, sounds doable, for me.

    • Paul May 2, 2020 (11:32 pm)

      Yep.  Did that today.  It’s an easy, good option 

  • WiseWoman May 2, 2020 (12:29 pm)

    Yay! Also WS Farmers market is opening May 3rd as well with more space between booths and socially distant shopping. Also not everyone can get a face mask or has a scarf. Or are online at all to know where or to buy. So if someone doesn’t have a friend or family member looking out for them then they may not wear one. And research still unknown on lots of things with this virus. I am willing to bet most people have it or had it already and did not know it!  I wear my facemark in all stores because I have one. 

    • Anon May 2, 2020 (4:58 pm)

      A tea towel can work like a bandana.

  • Friend O'Dinghus May 2, 2020 (12:35 pm)

    I bought 10 masks from neomask and couldn’t be happier. The proceeds go to the West Seattle Food Bank and they were ready the very next day. They also have a clever contactless method to get the masks to you safely. Great stuff! Awesome designs too!

  • Mj May 2, 2020 (1:01 pm)

    David the $15 for 10 is $1.50 per mask is more expensive than another protection item that is used for a much funner activity.

  • uncle loco May 2, 2020 (1:09 pm)

    Howsabout some of you people refrain from throwing your PPE trash in the shopping carts when you’re done using them. You know who you are…

    • ACG May 2, 2020 (1:38 pm)

      I agree. That’s so gross. On the ground in the parking lot is also not an appropriate disposal area. 

  • SD May 2, 2020 (2:54 pm)

    Thank you WS Thriftway! I’m postponing my every 10 days or so trip until Monday morning.

  • LyndaB May 2, 2020 (2:56 pm)

    Just came from Whole Foods.  Our cashier informed us that reusable bags won’t be allowed starting Monday.

    • WSB May 2, 2020 (3:20 pm)

      Thanks. I’m surprised they were still allowed at all – seems most others ruled them out weeks ago. I’m not happy about the non-reusable bags piling up in the closet as a result but this too shall pass …

      • Carole May 2, 2020 (4:51 pm)

        I keep my reusable bags in the trunk, and do as an earlier poster. I take the items to the car in the cart and transfer them into my cloth bags.  Started that when the paper bags started accumulating at home.

  • Grocery worker May 2, 2020 (2:56 pm)

    I see the grocery chains who’ve mandated masks for employees, while not requiring the same of customers. Save the speechifying about how wearing masks protects employees. It doesn’t. Not unless customers wear them, too. My grocery (which obviously I won’t name) said they wouldn’t start requiring customers to wear masks until most grocery stores had. What community leadership!

  • JeffK May 2, 2020 (3:56 pm)

    Was just at Thriftway and it’s amazing that there were about a half dozen people that didn’t get the arrow thing yet.

    • Patient May 4, 2020 (7:13 am)

      Sometimes the arrow thing doesn’t work.  I have had to turn around/back track down an aisle (the ‘wrong way’) because I did not want to weave around people that were standing in the checkout lines just to get to the next ‘proper way’ aisle.   I also don’t want to go down a whole aisle (full of people), that I don’t need anything from, just so I I can go the “proper’ way down the next aisle to grab something that I can get while walking ten feet the wrong way . . . 

  • Karen May 2, 2020 (4:07 pm)

    Took a chance and went masked  to Thriftway during senior hour on thursday.   It felt awkward as we’ve been strictly quarantining since the beginning, but hey, when you’ve been without coffee for two days what’s a person to do.   As I bent over to retrieve filters from the bottom shelf a clueless, unmasked woman leaned over me to begin filling a bag with coffee.  Even when I yelled at her she wouldn’t move.   I am glad to see this requirement enforced. 

    • WSB May 2, 2020 (4:14 pm)

      Hey, try Tuesdays! We (both in at-risk groups) have been there around 7 am each of the past few weeks and ever since the CDC’s mask recommendation, I can’t recall seeing a single unmasked fellow shopper. (Nor has it been difficult to “distance,” either.) Of course, by this Tuesday, their new rule will have kicked in anyway…

    • Tp May 2, 2020 (8:39 pm)

      Maybe she wouldn’t move BECAUSE you yelled at her. Just a thought. 

  • Happy near Westwood Village May 2, 2020 (4:12 pm)

    The QFC has free curbside pick up through their app. Tried it last week. Produce was perfect! A few substitutions but most everything was available. Pulled up, called the phone number, an employee loaded my groceries and off I went. 

  • Meg May 2, 2020 (10:12 pm)

    I went into a market in Portland in April and they had white bleached bandannas that they handed out to persons without masks. They also limited the amount of persons in at a given time. Things were very orderly and calm.

  • lox May 3, 2020 (2:53 am)

    The pitchforks on in these comments are wild. Most people are trying. Consider the sensory overload of trying to shop in dystopia, while wearing a mask, making sure to stay six feet from others, looking for a product and *gasp* you accidentally didn’t notice a new element – one way arrows on the aisles. Try showing some compassion rather than yelling at your fellow neighbors. Most are truly doing their level best given the circumstances. Show some grace. 

  • momosmom May 3, 2020 (11:57 am)

      What a boring world this would be if we were all perfect!

    • HappyOnAlki May 3, 2020 (3:31 pm)

      I don’t think we’re in grave danger of a boring world anytime soon . . . .

    • DRB May 9, 2020 (6:19 pm)

      I’d rather be a bit bored than dead or so sick I wish I were dead.   

  • Alki Heights May 3, 2020 (4:23 pm)

    If a store would demand that all customers must wear a mask, They will make a lot of money from us shoppers who want to be safe!

  • SD May 4, 2020 (12:29 pm)

    I went to Thriftway this morning at about 9 am. I didn’t see any signs mandating masks or anyone at the door enforcing the requirement, but it appeared that nearly everyone was wearing one. Of course, there was one guy not wearing a mask, and not surprisingly, he was also not observing the one way sign in the aisle where I encountered him. But overall it felt better/safer than my last visit there (fewer people and more mask wearing). I appreciate Thriftway’s efforts!

Sorry, comment time is over.