Crowds gather for new Native Sun Jax Beach grand opening


If there were any doubts how Native Sun Natural Foods Market would be received in the beaches area, all doubts were erased during the grand opening and ribbon cutting celebration held at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 19.

Hundreds turned out to in the early morning hours, standing in a line that wrapped around the shopping center where Native Sun is located, enduring occasional drizzles of rain. Customers were hoping to be one of the first 250 customers Saturday to receive $50 worth of free groceries. The day also included samples from local vendors including Community Loaves, Bold Bean, Olive My Pickle and Fresh Jax and giveaways.

Native Sun was founded by Jacksonville native Aaron Gottlieb in 1996. This is the third location for Native Sun, the other stores are located on Baymeadows Rd. and San Jose Blvd. Opening a beaches location was something Gottlieb had wanted to do since the nineties, but finding the right location was key.

The natural food store offers foods geared towards a healthy lifestyle, such as grass-fed beef and dairy products free of synthetic growth hormones and antibiotics. All of the produce is 100 percent organic.

In addition to groceries, Native Sun offers fresh juice and smoothies, a salad bar, gluten-free bakery, desserts, nutrition section, bulk items, eco-friendly cleaning supplies and pet food.

A large portion of the store is dedicated to a seating area so that customers can sit down and eat with a selection from the deli or a self-serve item.

Native Sun is located at 1585 Third St. N., Jacksonville Beach. Hours of operation are Monday through Saturday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Sundays, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. For more information, visit

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