Polar Vortex tests Whitewater Wal-Mart, residents

Cold weather impacts business, residents on winter readiness amid winter storm


Carli Pope, Staff Reporter

A snowstorm struck Wisconsin Sunday, Jan. 27 that kept the Whitewater community inside into the early morning the following day. Temperatures in the southern part of Wisconsin were consistently in the -30s. These lows that haven’t been recorded since 2014.

Because Whitewater does not expect to get any more snow after the 12 inches the last couple weeks, all Whitewater expects is cold. Due to the cold weather, people are told to prepare for the temperatures and stay inside.

Warning was put out that the cold temperatures were coming soon. Residents headed to Wal-Mart in Whitewater to gather supplies and prepare for the snow and the cold weather.

Olivia Hale, a Whitewater resident who was preparing for the storm by shopping at Wal-Mart, stressed the importance of having everything she needs before the storm.

“Since I have two little babies, I have to make sure that we have everything we need at home, so I don’t have to take the young ones outside,” said Hale.

The assistant manager of the Wal-Mart in Whitewater had some words to say on how Wal-Mart is affected by the storm and how it prepares for the needs of the community.  

“We definitely plan ahead of time and purchase the merchandise 2-3 days ahead of time. We set up special features like advertising shovels and salt in the front of the store to make sure those things catch the customers eye as they walk inside”

The assistant manager mentioned the importance of the lawn care department because they take care of the sidewalks and make sure they are safe for customers getting into the store.

He gave some advice to the community: “Stock up on everything you need during the cold temperatures, and stay indoors.”

Since Wisconsin is a state that regularly gets massive snowfalls, residents of Whitewater must have a budget plan for when the snowstorm and polar vortex hits.

College students are a big part of Wal-Mart’s spending population in Whitewater, so for the transaction to take place it’s important that students budget for storms.  

Morgan and Sarah, students at UW-Whitewater, need Wal-Mart’s business plan to work for them to have all of their necessities.

They were asked if they budget for storms and Morgan said,

“I always make sure the necessities are available incase I am unable to leave, but I don’t actually budget my money into my finances for it.”

While on the other hand Sarah has been preparing for these situations, in an in-case-of-emergency fund, but without a place that has the resources the consumers need, like Walmart, the consumer will be left empty handed.

There is no doubt that there is a lot of pressure on Wal-Mart to have its products stacked on the shelves for people preparing for a hiatus in the Wisconsin winter, but when all parts of the supply chain are working it can be done.