When Dave Driscoll heard Hostess was going out of business on Friday, he joined other Western New Yorkers in clearing the shelves of Twinkies and other favorites at the four area Hostess outlet bakery stores.
“We’re upset that it’s closing,” the West Seneca resident said, after loading bags full of mini muffins, doughnut holes, brownies and cupcakes into his car at one of the two Harlem Road stores in Cheektowaga. “We shop here all the time and have done so for years, so we’re stocking up.”
Driscoll was then on his way to a third Hostess store to buy more treats to store for the future.
“I’m not sure what we’re going to do now; we buy our bread and snacks for school lunches here,” he said. “My son only eats chocolate chip mini muffins, so we’re buying a lot of those today.”
In addition to the people at the stores losing their jobs, 38 people at the company’s distribution facility in Amherst are also being let go. The company announced Friday it was closing – and filed its intent to liquidate in bankruptcy court – after failing to work out a deal with its bakers union.
Area residents expressed sadness and disgust over the loss of Hostess, and the imminent closing of its discount bakery stores.
“I think it’s a shame,” said Michael Muroff, a 64-year-old Buffalo retiree. “I’m on a fixed income, so I’m going to miss this store and the savings. I have six grandchildren and one great-grandchild, and I come here to buy treats for them when they visit me.”
Muroff said he’s enjoyed Hostess breads and snacks since he was a kid and had been a regular shopper at the store since it opened.
“It’s a terrible loss,” he said.
Amanda MacMillan, another longtime customer was plain-spoken about the closing: “It sucks because they won’t be making Twinkies anymore.”
The 25-year-old Buffalo resident had rushed in to grab the few boxes of Twinkies left on the shelf.
“If the stores opened tomorrow, I’ll come back to see if there are more Twinkies,” she said. “I come here all the time to buy snacks for my kids. And I’ve been coming to this store since I was a girl.”
At about 3 p.m., Rosita Lopez, also of Buffalo, proudly claimed the last of the Twinkies at one of the Harlem Road stores. Her nephew, Chris Lindenau, 24, managed to find four cream-filled chocolate cupcakes.
“I think it’s quality prepackaged snacks, and I’ll miss it,” he said. “When I heard the news, we ran down here. It’s definitely sad news.”