For a half century, Johnson’s Store has been a staple of the North Columbia community. When the late Thomas Johnson III opened Johnson’s Store in 1969, he was grateful for the many loyal customers who supported his business. He decided to show his appreciation by providing holiday meals for his customers, and a holiday tradition was born.
That tradition has been continued by his son, LaMark Johnson, who took over the store in 2006.
“My mom and dad started out doing this in 1969 when they opened up this place,” said LaMark. “After I took over the business, we kept it going and we do it every year. We do it for Thanksgiving one year and Christmas the next.”
Hundreds of people turn out annually for the holiday meals.
“We serve everyone whoever wants to come out and get a dinner,” said LaMark. “We usually average out to serving over 500 meals each year. Each year, it grows more and more. It’s just to show our appreciation. Everyone is welcome to come.”
Three generations of the Johnson family and the staff of Johnson’s Store began serving the meals Sunday afternoon. Because of the inclement weather, attendance was slightly down this year. But the customers seemed to be very grateful to receive the delicious meals, and the Johnson family was equally happy to serve them.
Johnson’s Store is located at 5200 Monticello Road. The store is open daily from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. For more information about the store, call (803) 735-1622.