Alaskan Man Makes 14 Hour Weekly Boat Trips to Costco To Supply Town
If you thought driving 30 minutes down I-75 was far to shop the nearest Costco, you won't believe this. One man is making a 14-hour boat trip every week just to shop at Costco.
A grocer named Toshua Parker is making the long journey each week to make sure the folks of Gustavus, a remote Alaskan town, have all the supplies they need during the coronavirus pandemic. Parker, who owns Icy Strait Wholesale in Gustavus, usually has supplies shipped via ferry from Costco.The town is so remote it is only accessible by plane or boat. Since the pandemic, the ferry system has stopped running. There was also damage from storms to the docks that has hindered delivery as well.
Parker has now, along with his staff, been making a once-a-week boat trip to the state's capital of Juneau to restock on essential foods at Costco. Juneau is about 50 miles away and Parker has been making the 14-hour trip on a 96-foot long converted military landing craft.
Some may find his efforts heroic, but the Parker downplays it as no big deal. They were faced with having to find another way to get the supplies they needed. "Alaskans are fiercely independent and resourceful; you really have to be to survive here. So when a problem arises, we don't typically look to someone else for help, we just find a way to do it", he told CNN.
Gustavus, Alaska has just 450 residents, and Parker's store is the only place to buy groceries so his dedication is very much appreciated. Parker has been making the trip since March and schedules his trips around the weather and the tides.