Revamped Food City now open

Published 9:51 am Thursday, December 7, 2017

The opening of the new and improved Food City in Middlesboro was met with palpable excitement by not only the employees of the store, but the community at large. This branch of the company has served the community for over two decades — making the revitalization of the store more than just a passing curiosity, but a genuine event.

On the evening of Dec. 5 Food City hosted a ribbon cutting and flag raising event to usher in the next era of the store’s history as well as honor the dedicated employees who have made the store the respected part of the community that it is.

Guests were free to walk the aisles and sample food from various departments such as the bakery, Starbucks and the seafood section.

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Not only was the top brass of Food City in attendance, but so were elected officials such as Middlesboro Mayor William Kelley and Judge Executive Albey Brock.

Executive Vice President and Director of Store Operations, John Jones, spoke to the crowd and related his history with the company.

“The first store I ever opened for Food City was right down at the end of this parking lot (referring to the old Food City building) as a district manager,” he said.

Store Manager Richard Smith was also the first person Jones hired.

“Richard’s been like family to us and I’m sure he’s been like family to the community,” he said.

President and CEO of Food City, Steven Smith, also took the floor to speak to the crowd.

“I can’t tell you how proud we are to have this state-of-the-art Food City store here. It is one of our largest stores in our company — forget about just Kentucky — but one of the largest in the entire company. It’s got some of the most modern amenities in it that we’ve ever put in our supermarkets…so we are very excited to do this in Middlesboro. We’re very proud to be a family business,” he said.

The ribbon cutting ceremony began with Steven Smith introducing and honoring Richard Smith and his team of department managers.

After the ribbon cutting the crowd moved outside for the raising of the flag by Richard Smith and the singing of the National Anthem. After the ceremony was over, the crowd was invited back inside the store to mingle and partake in the various samples the different departments had on display.