Ashland#039;s new Wal-Mart ready for opening day

Published 12:00 am Monday, August 29, 2005

ASHLAND, Ky. - Similar to the old game show "Let's Make a Deal," everyone will get to see what is behind door No. 1 Wednesday when

officials pull the curtain on the new Wal-Mart Supercenter.

Located at 351 River Hill Road, the store has finished the move up the hill from the Ashland Town Center and gotten much bigger in the process.

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The store has gained more than 94,000 square feet and now features 36 general merchandise departments, a grocery store, a Tire & Lube Express, McDonald's, a portrait studio,

a photo lab, a vision center, a drive-up pharmacy, a City National Bank branch and a hair salon and nail salon.

"Everyone is excited," said store manager Harold Terry. "We can't wait to get the doors open. We have got this great big store ready to open. Š It is going to be a great thing."

The Supercenter will celebrate its grand opening at 7:30 a.m. Wednesday. Doors will officially open at 8 a.m.

Another aspect Terry wanted to focus on is the job creation and community support with 225 new jobs and a focus on charitable support.

The store will employ approximately 550 associates, which includes 225 jobs created by the relocation.

The national average wage at Wal-Mart for full-time employees is approximately $9.68 per hour.

Originally opened in 1989,

Terry said the store has continued to grow its business.

"We appreciate all the people from the Ironton and Coal Grove areas. They support us very well," Terry said. "I am just guessing but I would say 30 to 40 percent of our business comes from across the river."

Grand opening activities include an invocation, the national anthem and a ribbon cutting.

Activities are planned throughout the day and include product samples, demonstrations and give-aways.

The Cat in the Hat will read stories to children and finger printing will be available from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m.

At the opening, the store will announce $20,600 in donations through Wal-Mart's Good Works community involvement program to a number of organizations.