AT&T opens new N. Main storePublished 11:05pm Friday, March 22, 2013
A New Jersey company with retail locations in Virginia Beach, Norfolk and Chesapeake cut the ribbon at its first Suffolk facility on Friday.
The Wireless Experience, an authorized AT&T retailer, opened in February in the new Main Street Marketplace at 1217 N. Main St. It shares a parking lot with Panera Bread, one of the city’s most popular new eateries.
“We have been trying to get into Suffolk for a long time,” company President Brian S. Wainwright said. “It’s just that the right retail (space) was not available. They’ve done a nice job (at Main Street Marketplace) with the tenant mix.”
Wainwright said he was excited to finally be in Suffolk, and his attitude, he added, had much to do with the city’s attitude toward his company.
“You can tell the difference when a town is behind growth,” he said. “It’s obvious to us when a town is welcoming.”
Suffolk elected officials and staff members joined Wainwright and his local and corporate staff — as well as radio personalities doing a remote appearance, Chick-fil-A’s cow and minder and a few surprised customers — for a ribbon-cutting ceremony Friday morning in front of the store.
There were giveaways, prizes and refreshments, along with the special ribbon and big scissors from Suffolk’s Department of Economic Development.
The group gathered in front of the 1,500-square-foot store for the big moment following brief remarks by Wainwright and Mayor Linda T. Johnson.
“We’re so excited,” Johnson said. “We want you to grow with us.”
Tom Armstrong, the store manager and one of five full-time employees at the new facility, said things have gone well so far in the nearly two months the store has been open.
“February was slow,” he said. “But March was really good.”