Special to PIN by M. Cozzad
I had the long awaited 7-11 opening marked on my calendar for Sept. 12, 2019. Although the opening started at 6 AM, I decided to go about 10:30 to avoid the early morning rush. As I pulled in coming from the back through Nicki Drive, the place was packed.
Coming in through the back I noted a boat and motor flush pump that is available at no charge for people to wash their boats (a great feature for all of our fishermen). I am excited about their drive through car wash where I do not have to get out of my car to wash it. It is self- service and you just pay with your credit card and drive through. Their prices are $14, $12 and 9 depending on which service you choose.
I finally found a parking space and headed off to the front of the store. There in the parking lot, we were greeted by the Team from B.1039 The #1 Hit Music Station. I asked to take their picture and they said they would be happy to take one with me in it. They gave me cute little cow bell and a clear plastic shopping bag with B1039 printed on it and all of this time they were playing fun music from the station.
Next I signed up for the 7-11 rewards program. They gave me 3 tickets for their drawings. I did not win but I am a winner because now I am a part of their reward program. Next we did the taste tests from Starbucks drinks and also from Monster Dragon Tea.
Ok, now we were ready to go into the store. They have all kinds of “to go food and snacks” . They have the biggest drink selection I have ever seen. They have all kinds of sodas and their coffee bar is fantastic. You can get your coffee hot or iced. They have all kinds of flavors you can choose to put into it along with several choices of creamer and sugars.
They were giving away free hot dogs. THE BEST HOT DOGS EVER!!! They are quarter pounders. They are self-serve and there is a bar for the topping of your choice. Their gas pumps have ample room for trucks pulling a trailer and pickup trucks pulling boats. Not only does it look good, I think their set up is well planned for the needs of the people on this island. Later in the day they had bands playing as all of friends and neighbors came for their free hot dog and to wish them well.
Many Pine Islanders remember up to 40 years ago when gas production was interrupted any where in the world, the only gas stations which were, at the time, in Matlacha either had mile lines waiting for gas and/or the prices would spike 2 or 3 dollars per gallon. And all the Washington geniuses could never figure out what to do except to install windmills. Wonder what's the difference? You also know that there are some people just spitting furious that this isn't the case now. This is like an extra 1 or 2 thousand dollars in everyone's bank over a years time that no one is talking about.