SAN ANTONIO, TX – According to the signs on the front doors, the normal business hours at the HEB Plus store, located near Highway 281 and Evans Road begin at 6 a.m. each day.
However, you might think differently if you look behind those doors.
Inside the Stone Oak area location, workers are moving about all night long, preparing the super-sized supermarket for the day ahead.
“We're stocking grocery. We're stocking drug store. We're stocking produce,” said Kevin Hodgers, a grocery leader at the store.
A former overnight stocker himself, Hodgers now oversees a staff of about 50 people who work the graveyard shift.
From the deli to the meat department to the bakery, there is a flurry of activity during the hours while many other people are sleeping.
He said their mere presence inside the store all night long may come as a surprise to most customers.
So does the work they do, he said.
“Not everything comes ready prepared. They take regular material and they turn it in to something beautiful for our customers,” Hodgers said. “As you can see, if you look at our showcases, if you look at our market, these partners are very dedicated to what they do and they're excited every day.”
Even at 4 a.m., Tammy Moore’s excitement was hard to hide one recent morning.
The deli worker, who has been with the company for nearly three decades, danced along to music in her headphones as she assembled sandwiches.
“My blues. My ZZ Hill. My Bobby Blue Bland,” she said, laughing. “It, kind of, keeps me going there.”
Moore said while many people might have trouble staying awake all night, her body already has adapted to it.
She also sees some major perks that come with the schedule.
“There’s a lot less traffic,” she said. “For me, it works out family-wise because I have grandkids that need to picked up by a certain time after school.”
In between, though, she said she makes sure to catch a nap.
That way she can recharge her own batteries and be ready for another night ahead at work.