OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) — “Every day, say, Hey good morning, buenos días, have a wonderful day.” Nathalea Leal is talking about the customers at Mi Pequeño Mexican Market.
In just a few years in business, they have made a mark in north Edmond.
“Many people come here because they feel closer to home, they feel like Mexico, Mexico market,” said Leal.
Mexican market yes, but gas station, convenience store, and handmade Hispanic food favorites all in one. “Like food, burritos for breakfast, Mexican tortillas, Mexican candies, like Fritos, Mexican drinks, Guatemalan drinks, like any Hispanic drinks, we have like homemade guacamole, homemade pico de gallo,” says Leal.
The pandemic is actually responsible for the birth of Mi Pequeño Mexican Market says the owner, Monica Tucker.
“Well I was in hospice when COVID hit, and it changed the whole meaning of hospice, so I stopped working, and my husband wanted to open the store because there is nothing for Hispanics up in this area and so it just all came together little by little,” Tucker told KFOR.
There are 500,000 Hispanics in Oklahoma and that’s almost 15 percent of the population.
There are more than 20,000 Hispanic-owned businesses and that has grown by more than 50 percent in just the past 10 years.
Hispanics in Oklahoma have a lot of economic power.
“I don’t think they realize how much the Hispanic community helps here in Oklahoma” says Monica.
Now, with this business on the north edge of Oklahoma County, a variety of customers are finding their doors.
“It saves them a trip to the southside,” says Monica. “We have a little bit of everybody now that we have the meat market, a lot of Hispanic people and since we have been able to move to a bigger location it really helps, and we have been able to grow our services.”
Mi Pequeño translates into “my little one” in English, but this pequeño is expecting nothing but growth as the Hispanic community prospers in the Sooner state.
“We grew really quick,” says Monica. “We’ve done well. We are doing well.”