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Home Is Where Wawa Is

 The Wawa where it all began.

The rural South Jersey town I grew up in, is very different from the North Jersey neighborhood I now call home. North and South Jersey could probably be different states, but that’s for another blog post at another time. 😉 I love South Jersey for a lot of reasons, the fresh air, open roads, and long drives are just some of the things that make South Jersey great. But one of my favorite things is that at any given time, there are probably more than a few Wawas within a 5-10 minute radius of you. Needless to say, for a native South Jerseyan, Wawa was always a go-to destination.

For those of you who have not yet experienced a Wawa, you don’t know what you’re missing. Wawa is the greatest convenience store chain on the planet and single most contributor to my coffee addiction. Aside from their amazing coffee that’s made with love, they have delicious hoagies, fresh fruit and snacks, and super friendly employees. Wawas can only be found in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, and Florida. 

 Me celebrating Wawa Day 2015 ;)

Me celebrating Wawa Day 2015 😉

As a testament to the greatness, last summer, Wawa was named America’s #1 Convenience Store. Yes, you heard that right. You may be wondering how that’s possible since Wawas can only be found in select east coast states, but I think in large part it’s because Wawa has a unique community of passionate fans (exhibit A right here). Speaking of said fans, there was a fantastic article on Mashable recently called “The Cult of Wawa” that highlights some of Wawa’s fandom and explains why it has a “cult” following.


I love the instant connection of meeting others who are infatuated with Wawa. Recently, I was wearing my “I <3 Wawa Coffee” sweatshirt at a grocery store in North Jersey, and I was stopped by a fellow fan who was compelled to profess his mutual love for the convenience store to me, telling me how Wawa was always his first stop whenever he would travel down the Jersey shore to visit his family. My day was made!

When I first thought of writing this blog post about my love for Wawa, my mind was flooding with all of the offerings and qualities that make the store great. And there are a ton of them! But beyond all of that, what really brings Wawa close to my heart are the memories that sandwich (no pun intended) my Wawa visits. I even made a video about it for a contest – I know…I’m crazy. Wawa serves as a tried and true comfort, and my anchor to home.

Wawa has played a substantial role in my memories of home. Throughout middle school, my best friend Alex and I would frequently bike to Wawa for hoagies or ice cream (or both…let’s be real), and we’d picnic at the abandoned bank across the street. When my dad would take me to softball pitching class as a kid, we would routinely stop for iced tea and cream cheese stuffed pretzels afterwards. I would be lying if I told you that stopping at Wawa wasn’t my favorite part of pitching class. In high school, Wawa was my safe haven, and break from the stresses of too many AP classes, extracurriculars, and waitressing jobs. (A hot cup of Wawa’s Colombian coffee with just the right amount of both French vanilla and hazelnut creamer, makes everything better – trust me!) When I moved to North Jersey for college, there were no Wawas to be found; I was literally and figuratively away from home. Every time I would go down to South Jersey for the weekend, Wawa was my first stop when I got off the turnpike. Luckily as I progressed through college Wawas started to expand to North Jersey. It’s no coincidence that I now live within a bike ride to the nearest Wawa. 😉


 In April 2014 Wawa celebrated their 50th birthday!!

In April 2014 Wawa celebrated their 50th birthday!!

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More recently, Wawa continues to be a part of the new memories I’ve created. Ryan and I have enjoyed getting creative (and competitive) with each other for Wawa photo contests, taking hoagies on countless summer picnics, and starting off every long drive with Wawa coffee.  In January, I had the honor of introducing my good friend, and fellow photographer, Cinnamon Wolfe, to the Wawa experience on a trip we took to Maryland for a conference. When in Florida for my sister’s wedding, there happened to be a Wawa 5 minutes from where we stayed – {insert praise hands emoji here}! During our stay and throughout all of the wedding preparation activities of the week, Wawa was like the home base fueling our caffeine needs. Anywhere there’s a Wawa, I can get myself a little slice of home.

 My Hoagiefest photo contest entry

My Hoagiefest photo contest entry


 Ryan's Hoagiefest photo contest entry - isn't it so good!?

Ryan’s Hoagiefest photo contest entry – isn’t it so good!?

Needless to say, I’m emotionally attached to Wawa. You could probably go so far as to say I’m obsessed, but it’s for a good reason! Wawa is my anchor. A nostalgic symbol of home, that also happens to have amazing coffee. What’s your anchor? I’d love to hear in the comments below!  

  1. Tori P says:

    Jen, I loved reading this! My first Wawa experience was when I was down the shore as a child and I can remember being SO bummed when I found out that they weren’t a northern NJ "thing." So happy that has changed!

    • jennifer.noel.larsen@gmail.com says:

      Yay! Same!! I love that Wawas are starting to pop up in North Jersey now too! It makes me miss South Jersey just a tiiiiiiny bit less. 😉

  2. Amanda says:

    Couldn’t live anywhere without a Wawa!

  3. looooooove all of this so much!! And you have totally converted me to a Wawa fan myself. I can’t WAIT for all of the Wawa trips in my future in the next few years!

  4. Hannah says:

    Love the coffee and the make your own sandwiches. I didn’t really go there until college but now I looooove stopping at a Wawa on roadtrips!

    • jennifer.noel.larsen@gmail.com says:

      Their coffee and hoagies are the best!! 🙂 It’s always my first stop on a road trip too!!

  5. Shannon Garcia says:

    Haha! I LOVE This! I’m from Texas, but I lived in Maryland one year and experienced Wawa. So great!

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