Shoppers at the received an unexpected surprise on Saturday morning—their congressman was waiting inside of the store, taking questions from constituents.
This was Republican Rep. Andy Harris' second Perry Hall event this week. On Wednesday evening, he held a .
The "Congress at the Your Corner " event ran from 10 to 11:30 a.m. Harris said he spoke to about 25 people.
"I think that people feel like we go to Washington and forget about them," he said. "People need to have the opportunity to let their feelings be heard."
Beverly Simon, a bakery clerk, said it was an exciting event for store staffers. Simon brought over a chocolate macaroon cake for Harris and his staffers to sample.
"It's always nice to have someone important in the store," she said.
Simon said she wasn't aware that Harris was coming until her shift began at 10 a.m.
Don Kosdemba, a Perry Hall resident, noticed Harris after he walked in to do some shopping.
"It makes him seem a little more accessible," said Kosdemba, adding that he was surprised that the event was not advertised to the community.
No signs were posted in or outside of the store informing people of the event.
Safeway Manager Dave Baxter said he made a couple of announcements on the store intercom, which helped draw people to the congressman's table at the front of the store.
Baxter said the event was coordinated with the store more than a month ago.
Media were informed about it by email on Friday afternoon.
Following Wednesday's , Ryan Nawrocki, Harris' press secretary, said the office generally only gives 24-48 hours notice to community members and media before events.
"We want to be as accessible as possible," said Nawrocki. "But since Gabby Giffords, we have to consider safety."
Democratic Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords of Arizona was shot during an event at a Safeway in January. While she survived the assassination attempt, six others were killed and 13 people were injured.
When asked if giving short notice to constituents in the name of safety was worth fewer people attending events, Nawrocki said, "It's a fine line between safety and openess in government."