Fitness Guru Marilyn Pick Reinvents Herself as a Grocery Entrepreneur for Aruba’s Tourists. Marilyn Pick says she and her family find it tremendously “exciting and rewarding to create something that people enjoy and appreciate.” Around the Baltimore metropolitan area, Marilyn Pick has built a reputation for fitness and fashion. But on the Dutch Caribbean island of Aruba, she’s best known for groceries.
Perpetually clad in red and black, Pick has taught countless cardio, step, strength training, body sculpting and Zumba classes, and was voted “Best of Baltimore” by Baltimore magazine. As an instructor and former business owner/group fitness director, she served on the Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness, offered exercise tips on TV and led warm-ups at numerous charity races.
That boundless energy recently propelled her into a new business venture. In addition to teaching total body workouts, Pick serves as marketing director of GroceriesToGo Aruba, the island’s first full-service online grocery delivery business. She co-founded the enterprise with her son, Jared, and husband, Karl, who grew up in Aruba and maintains dual citizenship.
During a New Year’s Eve dinner on the island four years ago, the Picks conceived the idea of forming an online grocery delivery business to help Arubans and vacationers alike.
Karl Pick, an orthodontist and University of Maryland School of Dentistry professor, oversaw the process of applying for the required business licenses. Jared Pick, a University of Michigan graduate with an MBA, did extensive research and planning before developing a customized website, converting prices from Dutch florins to dollars to make it easy for American vacationers.
When the business was operational a year later, they teamed up with Aruba’s largest supermarket, Ling and Sons IGA Super Center in Oranjestad, to become their exclusive delivery partner. GroceriesToGo Aruba’s stated mission is “to provide quality products and convenient services to customers that will allow them more time to enjoy their vacation and the wonders of Aruba, One Happy Island!”
Comprising thousands of grocery items and travel essentials, GroceryToGo’s merchandise includes fresh produce, meat, desserts, dairy, frozen foods, snacks, deli, gluten free and kosher products; beverages including beer, wine and spirits; health and beauty; baby care; household goods, rental furniture and more.
Jared Pick is the company’s CEO, running daily operations, while Karl Pick is the CFO. The business runs smoothly with Edgar Sawney as manager working to make sure the orders are filled correctly and delivered on time
Marilyn Pick says marketing was a major part of building her fitness business, so it’s a natural transition for her to promote GroceriesToGo Aruba since she believes it is a beneficial service for so many people. Vacationers can arrive on the island and relax at the beach while GroceriesToGoAruba shops for all their groceries and delivers everything right to where they are staying.
“I like to visit timeshares and hotels, educating the concierges on how we can assist their guests by our shopping for their groceries so they don’t have to take time away from their vacation to shop and stand in line in a grocery store. GroceriesToGo Aruba now delivers to every hotel on the island of more than 104,000 inhabitants, as well as to timeshares, Airbnbs, villas, beach houses, homes, businesses, boats and yachts.
Islanders who are too busy to shop applaud the service, as do vacationers who like arriving at their destination with groceries waiting for them. “We brought four generations to Aruba and didn’t have to leave the family to go grocery shopping,” says Jennifer Goldmeier, vacationing in Aruba. “It is a great service, and we wouldn’t do it any other way!”
Dr. Joanne Rief concurs. “GroceriesToGo Aruba makes it so easy to have our groceries delivered right to us when we arrive,” she says. “I can’t wait to use this service again on my next trip to Aruba.”
Pick says she finds it tremendously “exciting and rewarding to create something that people enjoy and appreciate.” She also loves being part of a family business. “We work well together, share ideas and collaborate in the decision-making,”
For information, visit www.GroceriesToGoAruba.com.