If you live in South Jersey, you may have seen a new convenience store pop up in your neighborhood in the past year. Royal Farms, based in Maryland, is trying to make a move on the giant Wawa chain and it's homegrown Jersey competition QuickChek.

They offer gas and fast food like the other two, and their specialty is their fried chicken and their signature hand-breaded "western fries."

I've been in a few, mostly to use the bathroom during the pandemic or to get cheaper gas. Nice stores, nice people, I'd go back. But most of our convenience store loyalties are already set and old habits die hard. So Royal Farms is trying to get noticed in a very positive way.

They've just announced they're giving $25,000 in PPE to local restaurants, which will include 700 boxes of masks, hand sanitizer and gloves. The effort started in Baltimore and some of the money may end up helping folks here in New Jersey.

Royal Farms has about a dozen locations in our state so far, mostly in South Jersey, with one in Manville, Somerset County. Another location is planned for Brick. You may be seeing one coming to a neighborhood near you.

The new kids on the block are trying to make friends. You may want to check them out and see what all the fuss is about when it comes to their fried chicken and western fries. Or you just might need to get gas or use the bathroom.

The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Dennis Malloy. Any opinions expressed are Dennis Malloy's own.

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