Going through some old things I found my keys to my parents’ house in Worthington, and on the ring are two among the first keychain swipe cards I ever owned — a coffee club card for Scottie MacBean Roastery and Bakery and a Savings Club Wild Card for Big Bear, which was once one the larger supermarket chains in the area. If you lived in Columbus you undoubtedly remember the latter and the former is likely to ring a bell.
Scottie’s, as it was fondly known by locals, was a Scottish terrier-themed (remember that trend?) coffee shop located on N. High Street in Olde Worthington, just a short walk from Thomas Worthington High School, which, often to the dismay of the owners, made it a prime hangout spot for droves of teenagers who would scrounge together a dollar a piece for a bottomless cup of coffee and then hang out for hours drinking mug after mug of Highlander Grogg. In the early 2000s the business changed management and the name officially changed to Scottie’s Coffee and Tea House. After a few different iterations, the coffee shop closed for good a couple years ago, but it will certainly live on in the memories of many area residents, and a great many former Worthington Schools students from the 90s.
Big Bear went out of business in 2004. Some of their locations were taken over by Pittsburgh-based Giant Eagle, including the Clintonville store on N. High Street where I used to shop in my early twenties. My sister and her husband, musicians in Columbus, wrote a song about the chain’s demise entitled “Giant Eagle Ate the Big Bear.” If you’d like to hear it your best bet is probably to request a live rendition at one of their shows, but you can try sending their band, The Dag Nammits, a Facebook message and maybe they’ll record it one day!