Before Ellwood Thompson’s
In the mid 1980′s, Eric Walters, an employee of Grace Place, Richmond’s first vegetarian restaurant, began selling supplements, vitamins and a very limited selection of specialty natural products from a small corner of the restaurant. By the end of the 1980s it was time to expand.
Rick Hood, a local architect, was in the process of renovating a neighborhood shopping center. Together Hood and Walters opened City Market — a small 3,000 square foot full-service community market located near Patterson and Libbie avenues — to serve Richmonders hungry for organic and natural products. The store also featured organic produce and a small takeout deli.
In 1993, City Market moved to a larger space in Carytown. Shortly after moving, the store was renamed based on the suggestion of an employee’s 12-year-old daughter, Anica. Although many believe the store is owned by Mr. Ellwood Thompson, it’s actually named after the streets that intersect where the store is located, Ellwood Avenue and Thompson Street. Later, Walters decided to pursue new interests and Hood became the sole owner of the market.