Originally slated to open after the holiday season, the new Walmart in Andover will be open a little over two weeks before one of the biggest shopping days of the year.
The Walmart at the northwest corner of Bunker Lake Boulevard and Jay Street will open 7 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 13, according to store manager Todd Vanstraten. There will be a special grand opening ceremony 7:30 a.m. with a flag raising in front of the store.
“For us it’s about helping the customers,” Vanstraten said when asked what it means to be able to open before Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving and kick-off to the holiday shopping season. “We know the customers want us here and we want to be able to meet that demand.”
Andover City Administrator Jim Dickinson has said during his updates to the Andover City Council at its meeting that city staff has fielded a lot of calls asking when will Walmart be open. At the Oct. 15 council meeting, he said he has heard that people have been coming to the store wanting to shop.
Customers will be able to shop any time of the day they want from Nov. 15 through Dec. 25 because the city adopted a new ordinance last year to allow any store in the business districts to be open 24 hours a day between Nov. 15 and Jan. 1.
Vanstraten said the hours the first two days the store is open Nov. 13-14 and outside the holiday season will be 7 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Walmart had requested 24/7 hours throughout the year, but the council denied this and another request for Walmart to have a liquor store included in this development.
The Walmart offers full grocery options, including fresh produce and a deli, a pharmacy, optical center, a connections center to shop for cell phones and accessories, clothing, home products and furnishings and more.
A Subway is located within the store to give shoppers a place to take a break or grab a bite to eat as they come into or leave the store.
According to Vanstraten, the store has brought 300 new jobs to the community.
He started working for Walmart out of college almost 10 years ago and most recently was a store manager in Pine City for three years.
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