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Wednesday, January 21, 2015
Niagara USA Chamber President John Benoit speaks during the grand opening ceremonies at the new Walmart Supercenter on South Transit Road in the Town of Lockport. (HEATHER N. GRIMMER / ENP PHOTOGRAPHER)


Store manager Diane Waters leads the grand opening ceremony. 
TOWN OF LOCKPORT — With a line of customers waiting to be the first to shop at the long-awaited Walmart Supercenter, dignitaries and Walmart employees held a grand opening ceremony and ribbon cutting this morning.

Store manager Diane Waters led the ceremonies, which included "go Walmart" cheers from Lockport High School cheerleaders and store associates, a prayer by Pastor Michael Foster, introductions of department managers, certificates of appreciation to employees who have been with Lockport Walmart since the year the original one opened — 1995 ― and the cutting of a silver ribbon.

Waters discussed her own time with Walmart and praised the employees of the store, who, as she pointed out, had to endure Black Friday, the Christmas shopping season and opening a new store all within a matter of two months.

Dozens of Walmart employees were on hand for the opening ceremony.
"We want to say goodbye to the old building and hello to the new," Waters said to a crowd of more than 100, including several dozen customers. "The associates in this building are absolutely incredible. To say the least."

As part of the grand opening, it was announced that $8,920 in donations had been made by Walmart to 14 non-profit organizations. 

Town Supervisor Marc Smith joked to the Walmart-friendly crowd: "I can't tell you how many days I understood that it was going to be a cold day in January when this store opened."

Smith said the grand opening, which was more than a decade in the making, "really feels like Christmas to me."

He noted that his son was driving around in a battery powered toy car when the idea of a Supercenter was proposed. "He's driving something much faster now."

Town of Lockport Supervisor Marc Smith said the Walmart Supercenter is
just part of the puzzle — with four more projects coming soon to the town.
The 185,000 square-foot store is 56,000 square-feet larger than the previous store. In that extra space, they've added produce, a bakery, meats, a deli, a hair salon, a Subway Restaurant, a salon and a much wider variety of canned food and dry goods.

The new store will employ about 300 people, nearly 50 percent more than the old store did. 

The future of the old store has not yet been determined, but Smith said the town is busy working on four more projects, including another expansion at the Yahoo! site and a microbrewery on South Transit Road. 

The Lockport Walmart Supercenter will be open 24 hours a day with select departments open limited hours; The pharmacy will be open 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday. The auto care center will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. The photo lab will be open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday. And the optical center will be open from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday.


A line of customers awaited the store's opening following the ribbon cutting ceremony. 

NOTE: Story edited at 10:56 a.m. to add additional photos and links to related content.

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