Wednesday Mar 02 2011
Walgreens opens in Twelve Bridges
By: Stephanie Dumm News Messenger Reporter
First customer is an 11-year-old
Jack McCormick, 11, braved Friday morning’s pouring rain and sideways wind to purchase a box of Gobstoppers candy. It wasn’t just any old box of Gobstoppers, though. Jack, 11, purchased the first box of Gobstoppers ever at Lincoln’s Walgreens, which opened at 8 a.m. Friday. Jack was the first customer of the day, which was not a coincidence. “I said, ‘When they are opening? I want to be the first customer, for fun,’” Jack said. “I wanted to let everyone know it was open and I wanted to support the new business.” Jack had a reason for what he purchased. “I’ve never had Gobstoppers and I said I wanted Gobstoppers,” Jack said. The Twelve Bridges Elementary School fifth-grader said the employees were “friendly” and that no one else was in the store. Braving the weather with Jack was dad, Lee McCormick, who with his wife “fully supported” Jack’s wish to be the store’s first customer. “We’ve been watching it be built from the beginning and said, ‘Wouldn’t it be cool to be the first customer?’” Lee McCormick said. “He (Jack) decided we were going to do it and said, ‘Tomorrow is going to be the big day.’” Lee McCormick said the pair arrived at 7:45 a.m., and Jack made his purchase at 7:56 a.m. “It was a chance to be historic. I was excited because we have so many businesses closing so a new one opening was exciting and he (Jack) wanted to support it,” Lee McCormick said. “On the way home, we take Twelve Bridges Drive so we can stop there and get milk or anything.” Store Manager Steve Hargis said he was “quite impressed” that Jack and his father waited outside “because there were gale-force winds” that day. Hargis commented on how the store’s first day went. “Today, it’s been pretty smooth, it’s one of the smoother opening days I’ve had,” said Hargis, who has opened seven Walgreens stores. Friday was the store’s “soft opening,” with the grand opening to occur the first Sunday in April, according to Hargis. The store is 15,000 square feet and has 17 employees, Hargis said. Store features include a drive-thru pharmacy and a cosmetics department. Hargis said the store took seven months to build. He didn’t have the exact cost the Lincoln store cost but said it’s “usually about $1.4 million” to build a Walgreens. Hargis was positive about the location. “From the development plans I’ve seen, it looks like the area will continue to grow and the medical offices will help,” Hargis said. The News Messenger asked George Dellwo, Lincoln’s assistant director of development services, how Walgreens will impact the economy. “Walgreens will positively impact Lincoln’s economy by not only capturing customers that live in the Twelve Bridges and southern Del Webb neighborhoods, but more importantly, given the store’s location, it will be drawing from the residential areas of northern Rocklin,” Dellwo said. Dellwo was asked if other businesses might locate in the vicinity of Walgreens since it is now open. “Though a 14,490-square-foot store like Walgreens will generate and enjoy a strong market area for their goods and services, it can’t be compared to a 146,616 square foot shopping center where Raley’s is the major anchor store and smaller stores willingly gravitate to locate because of the shopping traffic and synergy they create,” Dellwo said. Robert Tambis, a Twelve Bridges resident, said he’s “really happy” that Walgreens opened since he “won’t have to travel to Raley’s” if he needs something. “I’m glad we have one (Walgreens) in town. It’s more efficient for people in town,” said Del Curtis, a Del Webb resident. Curtis was hopeful that more businesses would build near Walgreens. “It would be good to have a Trader Joe’s or a Costco,” Curtis said.