Wegmans, which once offered an in-store babysitting service called Wkids in select locations, is closing its last one situated in Amherst, NY, as reported by The Buffalo News. The free service allowed parents and caregivers the ability to shop without distractions after dropping off their children.
According to Michele Mehaffy, consumer affairs manager of the Wegmans in Buffalo, at its peak, the Rochester, NY-based chain had 27 stores with a Wkids on-site in the early 2000s. She added, “the number of families using the Wkids service has steadily declined over the past several years.” The Amherst store, located on Alberta Drive, will instead promote Family Experience programs which will include kid-friendly movie nights, in-store yoga and cooking classes geared towards children, story times, and painting nights in hopes of encouraging families to shop together. “Certainly we’re finding space in our current store footprint to bring more services that are now in greater demand,” said Mehaffy. “Wegmans really wants to be the most fun place to shop for families with kids.”
After the closure of the Alberta Drive Wkids, only six Wegmans stores (two in the Rochester, NY area and four in Pennsylvania) will offer the in-house babysitting service.