New Salina Dillons To Open Sunday
Todd Pittenger - Thu 12:46 PM 10/18/2012
A large crowd is anticipated when the new Dillons neighborhood supermarket opens in Salina on Sunday. The new store, at the corner of Cloud and Ohio Streets,replaces the current Dillons Southgate at 2012 S. Ohio, which was built in 1971.
Dillons Southgate, and the Dillons on Iron Avenue, will both close their doors on the eve of the new store opening. Both of those stores will close for good Saturday evening at 6:00
Store Manager Ken Sterling, who is moving from the Southgate location to the new store, says that based on feedback he has received from customers, and employees, "there is a lot of anticipation for this new store".
Sheila Lowrie from Dillons says that the many employees from the two stores that are closing are transferring to the new store. It will employ 230 people.
The new store is approximately 76,000 square feet.
Along with a wide selection of grocery items, the new store features among other things a Chinese kitchen, a pharmacy, a "Nature's Market" natural food section, and a fuel center.
Lowrie says that the "Nature's Market" area will have the largest selection of natural food in Salina, including some locally grown produce. The pharmacy will have a double-lane drive thru.
Other new features include a Sushi bar, and a Cafe dining area where hot and cold drinks, along with frozen drinks will be available. Customers will also have the ability to make milk shakes and smoothies.
Sterling notes that the new store has many "green features". Skylights make use of natural sunlight. Lights in the freezers are activated via sensors. And he says that they recycle everything they can, including plastic wrap that covers many of the bulk items and crates the store receives.
According to Lowrie, this new store will use 15% less energy per square foot than an average Dillons store, and 25% less energy per square foot than a Dillons store did in the year 2000.
The store will be open daily from 6AM till midnight.
The grand opening is at 6:00 Sunday morning. Officials have planned numerous special events for opening day, and opening week.
On Sunday, the first 250 customers after doors open will receive a free $5 Dillons gift card. There will be free samples throughout the store Sunday, activities for kids, and grand opening prices on many items. An official ribbon cutting is scheduled for 10:00 Sunday morning.
As part of the grand opening, Dillons is donating $1,000 each to Salina Central, Salina South, Sacred Heart, Ell-Saline, and Southeast of Saline High Schools. Sterling says that they are dedicated to supporting the area schools. Many of their employees some from the area schools. He says "they are the future of the community".
The project moved along very quickly, taking less than a year to build. Officials broke ground for it in March.
Lowrie says that Dillons has been in Salina for 60 years. The new Salina store is the third one to open in Kansas this year, joining stores in Manhattan and Lawrence. The next store will open in Hutchinson in 2013.