Walmart Brings Savings and Convenience to Blairsville
Posted August 17th, 2009 by Wal Mart Stores
BLAIRSVILLE, Ga., Aug. 5, 2009– A new Walmart opens this month in Blairsville, bringing more than 250 new jobs, savings for local shoppers and an increase in tax revenue to support the area’s economy. Nonprofit organizations will also benefit from the retailer’s ongoing charitable contributions and support for community projects. The Walmart, located at 2257 Hwy. 515, will be open to customers at 8 a.m., Wednesday, Aug. 19th.
Economic Impact Includes 250 New Jobs
The new Blairsville Walmart will employ approximately 250 associates, according to store manager Tony Stewart. Thirty of the store’s associates have worked for Walmart for more than 10 years. Stewart is a Georgia native who began his Walmart career in 1986 as an assistant manager at a store in Newnan, Ga.
Store Designed to Improve Customer Experience
In recent months, Walmart has taken major steps to refresh its stores, merchandising and customer experience. The improvements have all come together in the company’s newest stores, such as the Blairsville Walmart, with fast service, a friendly shopping experience and clean stores.
The new Walmart features wide aisles, enhanced service and a layout designed to make the shopping experience more convenient for customers. Walmart aligned the departments that customers shop most frequently. The pharmacy, for example, is adjacent to food making it easier for customers to pick up their prescriptions while shopping for their groceries.
“The layout of the store is easy to navigate, which will save our customers time as they shop for everyday necessities,” said Stewart. “By grouping the products that our customers most often purchase including health and beauty and pet supplies, we are making one-stop shopping even easier.”
A bright interior color palette creates an inviting shopping experience and helps define the store’s merchandise areas. Lower shelving creates an improved sightline and directional signage on every aisle helps customers find what they are looking for quickly. Walmart also combined the customer service desk, site to store pick-up location and photo lab in one area near the entrance. Customers now have easy access to these services, as well as associates on hand to help meet their needs.
Community Organizations Benefit from Grand-Opening Grants
As part of Walmart’s commitment to the communities in which it operates, $12,000 in grants from the Walmart Foundation will be presented during the grand-opening celebration. The following organizations will each receive $2,500 to support programs that serve the community: Ninth District Opportunity, Union County-Family Connection, House of Prayer Church Inc., American Cancer Society. The American Red Cross Northeast Georgia Chapter and Kiwanis International will each receive $1,000.
Store Design Incorporates Environmentally Friendly Features
The Blairsville Walmart, like all new Walmart stores, includes energy-efficient technology and environmentally friendly features to reduce energy and water consumption and minimize waste. The store’s skylights harvest daylight and reduce the amount of energy required to light the store by up to 75 percent daily. LED lighting in the store operates 70 percent more efficiently than traditional fluorescent lighting.
The cement used in the concrete flooring is made with recycled materials, and the floor’s finish reduces the need for chemical cleaners. Low-flow toilets and faucets reduce the water used in the bathrooms. The new store also operates a recycling program and will promote sustainable product purchases.
The new Blairsville Walmart will open just in time for customers to find additional savings on back-to-school merchandise. Showcasing its ongoing commitment to unbeatable* prices, Walmart has a selection of $9 product offerings that make it easy to do the math when it comes to adding up savings on everything you need to start the school year off right. The $9 offers include a diverse collection of back-to-school necessities ranging from backpacks to socks and eyeglass frames to folders.
“With great brands at great prices, we are helping students going back to school or off to college get the things they need and want, and helping mom to accommodate her budget,” said Stewart.
Ribbon-Cutting Celebration 7:30 a.m., Aug. 19
Community and business leaders will join Walmart associates at 7:30 a.m. Wednesday for a brief ribbon-cutting ceremony. Elizabeth Plott will be singing the national anthem, and Colonel Roshaven and the Civil Air Patrol will present the colors. Local government officials and business leaders including Commissioner Lamar Parris, Mayor Jim Conley, Chief of Police Johnny Carroll, Fire Chief Charles Worden, Union County Sheriff Scott Stephens will be present at the grand opening event.
Every week, millions of customers visit Walmart stores, Neighborhood Markets, and Sam’s Club locations across America or log on to its online store atwww.walmart.com. The company and its Foundation are committed to a philosophy of giving back locally. Walmart (NYSE: WMT) is proud to support the causes that are important to customers and associates right in their own neighborhoods, and last year gave more than $378 million to local communities in the United States. More information about Walmart can be found by visiting www.walmartstores.com.
*Our stores will match the price of any local competitor's printed ad for an identical product. Not applicable toWalmart.com. Restrictions apply. See store for details.
An invitation-only open house for grant recipients and other VIPs is scheduled from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 18. It will include preview tours and check presentations to representatives of community organizations. Reporters and photographers are welcome.
Store Manager Anthony Stewart is available for interviews and to arrange photo opportunities or tours. He can be reached at 706-835-2881.
* Location: 2257 Hwy. 515, Blairsville, Ga.
* 158,027-square-foot Walmart
* Store opens at 8 a.m. Wednesday, Aug. 19, following a 7:30 a.m. ribbon-cutting ceremony
* Store manager: Tony Stewart
* Open 24 hours a day, seven days a week
* Full line of groceries including a bakery, a deli serving fresh food and meal solutions for moms, meat and dairy products and fresh produce
* More than 30 merchandise departments such as apparel and accessories, a lawn and garden center, health and beauty aids, and an expanded electronics department
* Convenience services include a Tire and Lube Express, pharmacy, digital photo processing center, and a Walmart Connection Center
* Leased areas and services include a SmartStyle Family Hair Salon and a Subway restaurant
$12,000 in grants from the Walmart Foundation to the following area organizations:
* Ninth District Opportunity Inc
* Union County—Family Connection
* House of Prayer Church Inc.
* American Cancer Society
* American Red Cross Northeast Georgia Chapter
* Kiwanis International
* Store plans to employ approximately 250 associates
* The average wage at Walmart for full-time hourly associates in Georgia is approximately $11.49 per hour*
* Walmart benefits – available to eligible full- and part-time associates – include health insurance with no lifetime maximum. Walmart also offers a 401(k) plan and profit sharing contributions, whether an associate contributes or not, store discount cards, company performance-based bonuses, stock purchase program and life insurance
* Average wage taken February 2009. See www.walmartstores.com for details.
For more information
Store manager: Tony Stewart, 706-835-2881.
Walmart information online: www.walmartstores.com;