How we got our name.

And other fun facts you may not know about Sea Mart.

It’s Leap Year and while we set our sights high on trying to find 29 things you may not know about Sea Mart, we settled on four in celebration of February 29th only coming around once every four years. The best part about tracking down all these little-known facts was that many of them led us to fond memories of Barbara Hames. Read on and give Grandma Barbara Hames a nod as you go.

Sea Mart by the Numbers

  • the first grocery store in southeast Alaska to feature “computerized checkstands”
  • the first grocery store in southeast Alaska to have UPC scanners as part of the registers
  • the largest grocery store in southeast Alaska
  • the fourth largest grocery store in the state of Alaska
  • has expanded twice since 1978.

Why is our street number 1867?

You’ve probably seen it above our entrance, but did you know our address is 1867 Halibut Point Road? During the planning stages of construction, the City of Sitka gave Lloyd and Barbara the liberty to select an address (within certain parameters). Barbara selected 1867 as it was the year Alaska transferred to the United States from Russia.

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How’d we get our name?

We actually held a contest, well, Barbara did. At a creative loss, Lloyd and Barbara hosted a contest, open to the public, to name the new grocery store (originally located in Ketchikan). 2,557 entries were received for entrance into the grand prize drawing, a trip for two to Hawaii! The name Sea Mart (Lloyd and Barbara’s favorite) was submitted by three persons: Orville E Collins, Florence Turek, and Sandi Martin. The grand prize winner was picked in a public drawing and announced on the local radio station in Ketchikan, KTKN, and in the Ketchikan Daily News. Elsie Collins, a cashier at the time, actually won – she had to quit her job in order to win and was rehired when she returned!

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How’d a grocery store get a captain?

Barbara Hames of course! After the name was chosen, Barbara saw a photo of a sea captain and decided that “Sea Mart needed a captain too.” She worked with a local artist in Ketchikan and the rest is history!

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