Toni's Mini Mart 2221 East 12th Street · 816-231-4396
One of the best things about Toni's Mini Mart is what owner Toni Woodard doesn't sell -- alcohol. So hers isn't a magnet for the stumble-across-the-sidewalk drunks swarming other urban convenience stores. "We're just trying to have a nice, unique little neighborhood store," says Woodard, whom regulars call Ms. Toni. Her clean store offers all the things folks might need between trips to the supermarket -- bread, milk, sugar, soda. She even sells plants and potpourri candles -- stuff to make her neighbors' homes just a little more homey. "If we don't have something someone wants, we'll order it," Woodard says. "We try to give that neighborhood touch." Indeed, her store conjures memories of idyllic Mayberry. She offers grocery delivery to folks at the nursing home up the street. And when the youngins come in, Woodard helps them count their money. "People feel safe sending their kids here," Woodard brags.