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Author Topic: Gas Station Fandom  (Read 2065 times)

Max Rockatansky

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Gas Station Fandom
« on: May 22, 2022, 06:43:25 PM »

I canít say this is something Iíve ever found myself ever engaged in but it seems to be prevalent in some corners of the road community.  In particular this type of fandom seems heavily centered around Buc-eeís, Sheetz and Wawa.  Iíve all three to be adequate when needed but none of them are something I would go out of my way to visit on a road trip. 

Thoughts from the group on gas station fandom?  I did regularly visit a Wawa when I was down the street from a newer one on Semoran Boulevard in Orlando because convenient access and relatively cheap gas.  Granted this was the same block as the infamous Suncoast Energies and there was a decent gas station until Conway Road.  I wasnít a huge fan of the sandwiches at Wawa and they certainly werenít competitive with the Publix deli around the corner.
« Last Edit: May 22, 2022, 06:59:02 PM by Max Rockatansky »
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kevinb1994

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Re: Gas Station Fandom
« Reply #1 on: May 22, 2022, 06:55:49 PM »

I canít say this is something Iíve ever found myself ever engaged in but it seems to be prevalent in some corners of the road community.  In particular this type of fandom seems heavily centered around Buc-eeís, Sheetz and Wawa.  Iíve all three to be adequate when needed but none of them are something I would go out of my way to visit on a road trip. 

Thoughts from the group on gas station fandom?  I did regularly visit a Wawa when I was down the street from a newer one on Semoran Boulevard in Orlando because convenient access and relatively cheap gas.  I wasnít a huge fan of the sandwiches given there was a Publix around the corner.
Iím a big fan of Wawa (went to school in/near Philly, and thereís getting to be more locations around here) and QuickChek. I wish there were QuickChek locations around here, and was pleased to have Wawa follow me down here from up north.

Now, Buc-eeís is cool too, and Sheetz is, well, Sheetz.
« Last Edit: May 22, 2022, 06:58:37 PM by kevinb1994 »
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Brandon

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Re: Gas Station Fandom
« Reply #2 on: May 22, 2022, 06:56:40 PM »

Personally, I donít get it at all.  Sheetz and Wawa are just gas station convenience stores with an expanded food section, not much different than Caseyís here in the Midwest.  Their fuel prices arenít bad, but Iíd rather find somewhere cheaper for fuel.  If I want food, Iíll find an actual restaurant than a gas station.
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Re: Gas Station Fandom
« Reply #3 on: May 22, 2022, 08:00:21 PM »

We know a lot of Millenials who will drive to Sheetz just for a large cup of coffee that purportedly costs more than Starbucks (which is right across the street).

Me personally, I use Sheetz quite a bit because they are the only place that I can get E15 at the pump.  This is only running 20 cents less than regular for the past month, but was running 30 cents or more less after regular gasoline first hit the $3 mark around here.  I've got an elderly relative that lives nearby who has a Flex-fuel vehicle, but I can't get her to buy E85 because she is nervous about what it might do to the engine the first time.  E85 at the same Sheetz station is running 65 -to- 85 cents less per gallon.
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hbelkins

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Re: Gas Station Fandom
« Reply #4 on: May 22, 2022, 08:02:36 PM »

Sheetz has a special place in my memory because it was about the only place open to get something to eat when my dad, brother, and I were traveling on Christmas back in 1990 or '91. At the time, they were basically Subway in their choice of menu items, but it was great to find one open outside of Baltimore for lunch, and in Cumberland for dinner.

My next encounter with a Sheetz was when I was driving the approximate route of Corridor H back in 2000. When I got off I-79 at US 33, I saw Sheetz and stopped. The food menu had expanded by then, and it's continued to grow.

I like Sheets because of the varied menu, especially the fried foods. And honestly, it's a novelty because we don't have them here. For years, the nearest one was at Weston, a good 4 1/2-hour drive, but now they've expanded into the Huntington area. But still, I haven't made a special trip just to get Sheetz, although I will definitely eat there anytime I'm in their territory.

I know much of the Sheetz vs. Wawa fandom rivalry centers on the coffee, but I'm not a coffee drinker, so that means nothing to me. It's the food items that make me prefer Sheetz.

As far as gas goes, being a member of Sheetz' rewards program gets me three cents off per gallon, but if gas is cheaper elsewhere, I'll choose elsewhere over Sheetz. Gas is gas.And since West Virginia's gas tends to be higher than ours or Virginia's, I don't buy gas at Sheetz in Beckley or Princeton unless I have to. There's a Food City on the Virginia side of the state line at Bluefield, and a Walmart near the US 19/US 460 split, that are usually quite a bit cheaper.

I have yet to check out our new Buc-ee's. I'm waiting for the crowds to subside. I'm told, though, that the food is expensive. I'll probably end up going a couple of times for the novelty of it, but it's really not on my way to anywhere.
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Re: Gas Station Fandom
« Reply #5 on: May 22, 2022, 09:28:21 PM »

I like Sheetz, Wawa, Stewart's, Fastrac (although they seem to be going downhill), Cumberland Farms (they might also be going downhill), Byrne Dairy, and QuickChek.  For a lot of these, food does play a big part of that (especially Sheetz, Wawa, Stewart's, and QuickChek), but they also seem to be cleaner and are generally good with the windshield washer fluid and squeegees (such is actually the reason my opinion of Fastrac is going down; they haven't been good on this the last few times I've gone, and the same is also true for Cumberland Farms).  Now, it's not like I'm going out of my way to go to these places (mostly; I do go a little out of my way when visiting my parents to go to Fastrac), but if they're along my trip plans, they get higher priority (especially Sheetz and QuickChek).  Getting food and gas in one stop is certainly a time saver (such is why I don't like how Wawa and Cumberland Farms don't have seating), and many gas stations feel filthy in comparison, even just at the pump.  Plus when you drive a lot, the windshield stuff is essential.  I don't understand why many stations just put dish detergent in water, or have bad squeegees, or don't have anything at all.

Yeah, I've probably been becoming a bit of a gas station snob in recent years...
« Last Edit: May 28, 2022, 09:00:11 PM by vdeane »
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Rothman

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Re: Gas Station Fandom
« Reply #6 on: May 22, 2022, 09:47:56 PM »

Sheetz is teetering in quality to me, given my last few visits.1  Have a fond nostalgia for Cumby, though, and its cheap gas in MA.  Love Stewart's and its year round egg nog.

Convenient Food Mart's logo bugs me.
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TheHighwayMan394

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Re: Gas Station Fandom
« Reply #7 on: May 22, 2022, 11:01:43 PM »

Kwik Trip doesn't seem to be especially popular with roadgeeks specifically, but it does have its own general cult.
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Re: Gas Station Fandom
« Reply #8 on: May 22, 2022, 11:09:24 PM »

Sheetz is teetering in quality to me, given my last few visits.

A gas station that produces greasy fast food? What is your base acceptance of quality food??
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Rothman

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Re: Gas Station Fandom
« Reply #9 on: May 22, 2022, 11:25:15 PM »

Sheetz is teetering in quality to me, given my last few visits.

A gas station that produces greasy fast food? What is your base acceptance of quality food??
I could get a decent milkshake or other ice cream treat there.  Last few times I've been there, it's been disappointing.
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XamotCGC

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Re: Gas Station Fandom
« Reply #10 on: May 23, 2022, 12:09:17 AM »

I wish my area of Kentucky that i'm from had more diverse choices of Gas Stations.  Everything is ether a Marathon/Five Star, Kentucky petroleum supply, or a store associated gas station like Kroger or Wal-Mart.

 
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Re: Gas Station Fandom
« Reply #11 on: May 23, 2022, 12:48:53 AM »

I have no strong feelings about any gas stations one way or another.
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Re: Gas Station Fandom
« Reply #12 on: May 23, 2022, 08:11:13 AM »

I like [...] Fastrac (although they seem to be going downhill)

There's a Fastrac not too far from my house that seems decent. I don't often fuel up there, but sometimes go to the convenience store. I wouldn't put it in the very top tier in terms of great travel stops, with one exception - the one in Wolcott, NY. I was really impressed with that one, maybe partly because it was recently remodeled; it was very spacious, had clean restrooms, and a ton of food options. It was what I'd consider more of a "proper" travel stop like a Love's or Sheetz, which are very rare in Western NY (although there is a new Love's on NY 414 near the Thruway).
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Re: Gas Station Fandom
« Reply #13 on: May 23, 2022, 08:18:31 AM »

While not in my fandom, this station, which is now a Global, is always busy to the point of having to designate an entrance and exit and sometimes backing up onto the street. It's typically much cheaper (sometimes even 30Ę) than the surrounding stations, but it seems to be busier than it should be, for these three reasons.

  • There was a time about a month ago when it was about average due to stations all updating at different times. It was still packed.
  • There was a time about two months ago when the station on the other side of 495 was only one cent higher. While I didn't see this station at that time (I was walking and went a different way), the station that was only one cent higher was about as busy as a typical gas station, not absolutely packed.
  • Back when it was a Wave, it would lie to you on inspection and tell you that it failed so that they would get more money from the repairs. I don't know if this is still the case or not after the brand change.
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Re: Gas Station Fandom
« Reply #14 on: May 23, 2022, 10:00:15 AM »

Sheetz has a special place in my memory because it was about the only place open to get something to eat when my dad, brother, and I were traveling on Christmas back in 1990 or '91. At the time, they were basically Subway in their choice of menu items, but it was great to find one open outside of Baltimore for lunch, and in Cumberland for dinner.

My first encounter with Sheetz was in Meyersdale, Pennsylvania back in the late 1980s.  They were one of the few non-branded chains that took the railroad's gasoline credit card.  The store was older and the grill was behind the register.  I got hooked because of the low prices for "good-ole country sausage biscuits", plus I could get West Virginia-style pepperoni rolls at the counter (probably a local product).  Coffee was only 25 cents at the time, and wasn't strong enough for my taste.  Makes you miss the good ole days.
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Re: Gas Station Fandom
« Reply #15 on: May 23, 2022, 10:33:38 AM »

Sheetz is teetering in quality to me, given my last few visits.

A gas station that produces greasy fast food? What is your base acceptance of quality food??

The food at Sheetz was actually pretty decent for what is basically fast food. I can't eat there anymore (celiac disease) but I've heard from a few people that it's not as good these days.
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Re: Gas Station Fandom
« Reply #16 on: May 23, 2022, 08:14:19 PM »

Quote
We know a lot of Millenials who will drive to Sheetz just for a large cup of coffee that purportedly costs more than Starbucks (which is right across the street).

It doesnít. At least not up here, where it competes with Wawa as well (and for my money, Wawa has better coffee than either Sheetz or Starbucks, and is definitely cheaper than the latter).
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Re: Gas Station Fandom
« Reply #17 on: May 23, 2022, 08:49:16 PM »

I like [...] Fastrac (although they seem to be going downhill)

There's a Fastrac not too far from my house that seems decent. I don't often fuel up there, but sometimes go to the convenience store. I wouldn't put it in the very top tier in terms of great travel stops, with one exception - the one in Wolcott, NY. I was really impressed with that one, maybe partly because it was recently remodeled; it was very spacious, had clean restrooms, and a ton of food options. It was what I'd consider more of a "proper" travel stop like a Love's or Sheetz, which are very rare in Western NY (although there is a new Love's on NY 414 near the Thruway).

I think the gas side has been getting worse since Cumberland Farms bought them out; can't comment on the present state of inside since I don't usually have reason to go inside a gas station around Rochester.  The air is no longer free (granted, other stores on my list aren't either, but it's definitely a point or two loss), and the availability of windshield washing fluid is now hit or miss (critical given how many bug splatters I get when on the road in summer and salt grime in the winter).
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Scott5114

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Re: Gas Station Fandom
« Reply #18 on: May 23, 2022, 09:36:06 PM »

I think the gas side has been getting worse since Cumberland Farms bought them out

more like Cumbersome Farms amirite
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Re: Gas Station Fandom
« Reply #19 on: May 24, 2022, 08:55:17 AM »

QuikTrip is the local religion here in Wichita.  I don't get it.
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Re: Gas Station Fandom
« Reply #20 on: May 24, 2022, 12:41:17 PM »

I don't know that we have a cult favorite in Kentucky. Speedway is omnipresent, and their footprint multiplied when Marathon bought Ashland and its SuperAmerica chain a couple of decades ago.

In southeastern Kentucky, Double Kwik seems to have a bit of following for its pizza rolls. One thing that's unusual about them is that they have different brands of gas. You can find BP in some places and Marathon in others. The chain is owned by Childers Oil out of Whitesburg.

Other chains in Kentucky seem to be regionally based. We have Thornton's in the central part of the state, UDF in the north, Apple Market in the east central region extending into north central and southeast, Huck's in the west, and Casey's is starting to move into the western part of the state as well.

We're starting to see more Clark's Pump and Shop locations, but I know nothing about them.

But then again, none of those places (except Double Kwik and Casey's) are popular for their food. That's what seems to set the Sheetz and Wawa fandom apart.
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Re: Gas Station Fandom
« Reply #21 on: May 24, 2022, 01:43:53 PM »

I know here in the Cincy area, people rave over UDF (a local gas/convenience store chain). Could see the appeal of them: good ice cream and cheaper gas than a competitor across the street.

As for some convenience stores I praise a lot, 7/11 stores in Japan and Taiwan.
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Re: Gas Station Fandom
« Reply #22 on: May 24, 2022, 05:19:19 PM »

I'm going to get slapped over this one, but in West Virginia it's got to be GoMart.  The ones in more rural areas have greasy fried chicken that you can smell from two miles away, and traditionally sold lots of local products such as homemade candies, pastries and (in northern parts of the state) pepperoni rolls.  It's been a few years since I've been back to West Virginia, so I don't have any clue how it is today.
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Re: Gas Station Fandom
« Reply #23 on: May 24, 2022, 05:23:59 PM »

I am not exactly a fan of any but I do avoid certain chains that have a policy of not having restrooms for customers.  For heaven's sake, I've probably driven several hours and would like to empty my bladder at the same place I fill my car's tank.  Is that too much to ask?
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Re: Gas Station Fandom
« Reply #24 on: May 24, 2022, 05:27:15 PM »

QuikTrip is the local religion here in Wichita.  I don't get it.

KC too. They're normally clean. The people working there are nice and actually get paid well. I tended to gravitate towards QT when I was in Kansas. Can't say it's nearly as culty as Buc-Ee's and Wawa from the sound of things though.

 


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