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Spotlight On Mike Hanson

New store manager at The Crown Market

By Cindy Mindell

WEST HARTFORD – Just a few years away from its 80th anniversary, The Crown Market has an impressive track record in the Greater Hartford Jewish community. After opening in 1940 on Albany Avenue between Magnolia and Irving Streets, The Crown expanded several times until 1967, when it relocated to its current location at Bishop’s Corner. Except for six weeks in 1970, when the market was shut down for renovation after a fire, The Crown has operated uninterrupted ever since.

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The Crown Market is now undergoing a major remodeling.

Now under new ownership and in the midst of a new round of remodeling, the store has seen kashrut upgrades throughout the store, including the installation of two new state-of-the-art kitchens, and expanded kashrut certification in the fresh meat and catering departments, deli, prepared foods, and bakery.

This month, The Crown welcomed a new store manager from among its ranks. A Glastonbury native, Mike Hanson graduated from Glastonbury High School in 1992 and then joined the Marines from 1993 to 1997. Upon his return to the U.S., he enrolled in the two-year certificate program in computerized accounting at Goodwin College, also working at Brooks Pharmacy in Norwich and Portland.

After graduating, Hanson learned of an opening at The Crown for a customer-service manager from his wife, who worked with the wife of one of the store owners. He was hired for the position in July of that year. This month, he was named store manager.

“The Crown Market is the Jewish community,” says Hanson. “The Crown has been servicing the Jewish community for over 75 years. Even though we are not the only market that offers kosher food, we offer a family environment. The Crown is personal; we know our customers’ stories and families. I personally have watched our customers’ children grow and now their childrens’ grow up. It’s a family place with a family feeling.”

In its ongoing remodeling, The Crown will soon add several new and updated sections, including produce, olive and salad bars, prepared hot foods, sliced cheeses, and an in-store dining area.

Hanson is now working toward a BS in business administration at Charter Oak State College in New Britain. For the past two years, he has brought his talents to Bozzuto’s Best Bagger Competition, part of the Cheshire-based wholesale distributor’s annual Merchandising Marketplace conference at Foxwoods Resort Casino in Ledyard. Competing against representatives from food markets throughout New England and the New York Metro, Hanson won First Place in 2015 and Second Place in July.

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