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Fruth to host community appreciation day Friday

It’s been about six months since a major fire devastated an abandoned building in downtown Ironton, which caused the closure of Fruth Pharmacy’s Third Street location.

This Friday, the pharmacy’s State Route 141 location will host a community day to show appreciation to its customers who remained supportive throughout a transition that relocated about 10 employees initiating a store expansion.

“We went back into the store on 141 and expanded the pharmacy to accomodate the staff from the downtown store so we wouldn’t have to lay anyone off,” Lynne Fruth, president and chairman of the board, said. “We’ve come full circle on all of that and we want to welcome people in the community who haven’t been in the store since it closed.”

Fruth said making sure customers of the Third Street location were still able to get their medications after the fire, as well as making sure employees didn’t go without a pay check were the top priorities following the store’s closure. She said it was similar to a situation in 1996 when the Fruth warehouse, which employed about 50 people, burned down about three weeks before Christmas.

Her father and owner of the company, Jack Fruth, found temporary workspaces for his employees and none were laid off.

“He understood the hardship it would create to not have a paycheck in December,” Fruth said.

The community event will be from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. with a live radio remote by the DAWG. Ice cream cones will be given away as well as prizes and free health screenings.

There will be a grand prize drawing for a mobility scooter and special sales throughout the store.

Pharmacy staff will be on hand to talk about immunizations — for children and well as adult vaccines, such as the shingles vaccine — prescription counseling, prescription delivery service and text alerts, store rewards and online ordering.

Fruth said she would also be in attendance.

“It will give me a chance to see the folks in Ironton,” she said. “Ironton has been a very welcoming community for us. The mayor and the economic developers and commissioners have done a really good job to attract businesses to Ironton. This is another opportunity to mingle with all those folks who have been supportive.”