North Main Kroger: A refreshed look and new services
Published 2:58 pm Wednesday, December 13, 2023
Wednesday saw jubilance in the air of the North Main Kroger supermarket. As part of the mid-Atlantic division’s four re-grand openings, which included Richmond, Rocky Mountain and Harrisonburg, the Suffolk Shopping Center store, located at 1401 N. Main St., celebrated its re-grand opening on Wednesday, Dec. 6, with team members and both company and city officials gathering together for the store’s refreshed new look. Kroger Mid-Atlantic Division President Lori Raya celebrated the occasion giving top praise to store associates.
“It’s so fun to be out with the associates because it’s a hard work day in and day out in a grocery store during a holiday, through Thanksgiving having to remodel, then getting to this point today, it’s a lot of hard work, and then I wake up on these days, it makes me so proud to be associated with all of the amazing associates in the stores,” Raya said. “This store will look great today, I have no doubt, but what makes me more proud than anything is the customer experience and what you do every day to take care of each other and take care of our customers. It makes me very, very proud.”
District Manager Shane Hambrick also expressed how proud he was of the team while enthusiastically detailing new and upcoming additions to the store, which include a new floral department, more space in the bakery department, rearrangements for freshness of produce and a new Murry’s Cheese Shop. Likewise, Hambrick noted the upcoming fuel station.
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“We got a fuel station coming. I know everybody’s excited about that. We have grocery shoppers everyday that are so excited about getting some fuel here,” Hambrick said. “Just really proud of what the team’s doing in the store and just looking to serve our community even more.”
Along with thanking Raya and the merchandising operations team, Store Leader Darren Nucci expressed special thanks to his Department Heads and Assistant Store Leaders.
“Without you guys and your teams, this would not have happened,” Nucci said. “I appreciate everything that you guys have done in these past six months as we started in June. You guys have worked mentally hard, and I appreciate it.”
Attending the ceremony with City Council Members John Rector, Roger Fawcett, and Vice Mayor Lue Ward, Mayor Michael D. Duman thanked the entire Kroger team for their investment, work, and contribution to Suffolk.
“Everyone here who has a badge on, that’s what makes it work. You can’t do it without the employees. It’s just like every other product, you can usually buy what you’re selling someplace else, but what you have to offer is something they can’t get someplace else and that’s you,” Duman said. “Thank you, Kroger, for your investment, thank you for your generosity, thank you for being a good corporate partner …”
Also, during the ceremony, Kroger presented a check of $1,500 to the Food Bank of Southeastern Virginia toward their hunger relief efforts in the Suffolk community. Food Bank of Southeastern Virginia President and CEO Christopher Tan expressed his thanks while noting how Kroger plays a part in their food donations to the community.
“Last year, we delivered 21 million pounds of food to this community and a lot of that food, about half a million pounds a month, is rescued food from places like Kroger,” Tan said. “On behalf of the Food Bank, we are thrilled to be your partner. We’re honored to be your partner …”
Following the ceremony and ribbon cutting, Raya commented on how proud she was of everyone making the remodel possible.
“I am just so proud of my associates for the work that they’ve done to complete a remodel during the holiday season, taking care of their customers and taking care of each other, but investing in a store also means investing in our people, and I can’t get anything done without them,” Raya said.
On what she hopes the customers will take away from the re-grand opening ceremony, Raya says she hopes they will see that they are here for the community.
“We’re here for the long haul. We’ve invested in Suffolk in this store and we’re also remodeling another store within the Suffolk area on University [Boulevard], and we’re adding a fuel center. We want the community to know we’re to serve them whether it’s to get fuel, groceries, their pharmacy or medical needs and just be a great neighbor within the community,” she said.
Lastly, Raya provided details on when Suffolk can expect the fuel center’s completion.
“The fuel center is scheduled to be completed around Jan. 31 next year, so very soon!” she said.