Lola’s Market and Deli gets recognition

CARLSBAD — The mural paint on the outside wall of Lola’s Market and Deli in the Village has dried revealing the image of three sisters posing near their family market back in the 1950s. 

This charming business, located in the Barrio, remains a historic family-owned market and Carlsbad staple.

Recently, Lola’s Market has received much recognition being first awarded Business of the Year by the San Diego Union-Tribune’s first San Diego Latino Champions Awards March ceremony, which spurred two proclamations.

Sisters Ofelia Escobedo and Connie Trejo operate the market and deli. The San Diego Union-Tribune recognized how they transformed their homey establishment into a hub of Barrio history and an open-door invitation for youth.

“My parents had the grocery store since 1943 and my sisters took it over in 1985 and converted into a market and deli,” Escobedo said. “Our deli does really wonderful because we get a lot of surfers, skateboarders and a lot of high school kids that come during lunch and they really put us on the map — they are really nice, nice kids.”

The proclamations the sisters received were from California State Sen. Mark Wyland, and most recently, another from the city of Carlsbad.

Escobedo and Trejo have been praised for their work in maintaining the Barrio neighborhood along with its strong historical influence. In the early 20th century, the neighborhood located at Roosevelt and Walnut, was a place for Latinos to call home.

“The Barrio in Carlsbad was initially started back in the early 1900s by Mexican people who were leaving Mexico because of the Revolution,” Escobedo said. “They came here and started the city of Carlsbad.”

At first, tents were pitched, and slowly, the construction of homes and businesses followed. Escobedo arrived with her family as a teen and remembers the beginnings of the Barrio with its grocery store, pool hall, restaurant and small church.

Carlsbad, she said, was established but not incorporated yet when her family set their sights on the Barrio.

Although Escobedo is the eldest of her two sisters, her youngest sister, Frances Jauregui-Moreno, decided to pursue another career. However, she is often spotted at Lola’s Market.

When the sisters took over the market in 1985, they named it Lola’s, in honor of their mother.

“Everybody knew my mother because she ran the whole store,” Escobedo said.

In mid May, Escobedo and Trejo went to the Carlsbad City Council chambers to receive their proclamation, which was presented to them by Councilwoman Farrah Douglas.

After giving the sisters a warm hug, Douglas approached the microphone. “It really is my personal honor to do this because I have known Connie and Ofelia forever and ever,” she said, adding that she and the city have appreciated everything the sisters have done for the Barrio and the Latino community.

Douglas went on to say that they thanked them for their years of dedicated to service to their community and the city of Carlsbad.

“Ofelia and Connie have established and managed a family business, Lola’s Market, in the same location for 26 years providing service to the local community and a landmark community gathering place advocating for the vitality of the surrounding neighborhoods,” Douglas said.

Douglas also pointed out that the sisters have celebrated the diversity of their Latino heritage and have been recognized as stewards of the Latino community and proponents of local youth.

“We extend to Ofelia Escobedo and Connie Trejo our best wishes for many years of well-deserved happiness and success in the future,” Douglas said.