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Cookeville’s Food City Open For Business

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Cookeville’s Food City Open For Business

Cookeville’s Food City has officially opened.

The company held a ribbon cutting ceremony Tuesday night leading up to Wednesday’s grand opening. Food City CEO and President Steve Smith said the some 54,000 square foot store has 220 employees ready to serve.

“We are so glad to be part of Cookeville, part of Putnam County” Smith said. “We are going to be a good corporate citizen here. That is part of the fabric of out company.”

Over 100 people attended the celebration that included a flag raising, a Tennessee Tech Spirit Squad performance and a firework display. The store is located at the intersection of East 10th Street and Old Kentucky Road.

“The first words out of my mouth are wow,” Smith said. “To look at this crowd and seeing how honored we are tonight by having so many come out on what started to be a rainy evening to hear nice comments from both mayors and university president here, it really does honor our company.”

Cookeville Mayor Ricky Shelton, County Mayor Randy Porter and Tennessee Tech President Phil Oldham all welcomed the new grocery store. Shelton said Smith showed his dedication to the community before a store was even planned.

“They brought $391,633 and blessed this community after the tornado,” Shelton said. “It was simply amazing. That went into our tornado fund that helped our community rebuild. We’re so proud of this development.”

Porter said he considered Smith and Food City as family after all the company has done for the community. Porter said the grocery store was one that he wanted to come to Putnam County.

“Because of what you did for our community for our time of need and time of hurt and we will never forget that,” Porter said. “Another great thing about Food City is that they are family and employee owned. You don’t see that many stores anymore or corporations or businesses that are family and employee owned the size of Food City is. We are just excited to have them here.”

Oldham celebrated the occasion by gifting Smith a Tennessee Tech jersey during the ceremony. Oldham said the grocery store is a great expansion for the community.

“Welcome to Tennessee’s College Town,” Oldham said. “We’re very proud of this community. This is a rare community where we all get along and we get a lot of great things done. You couldn’t be coming to a more dynamic community than Cookeville and Putnam County right now.”

The Cookeville supermarket will is one of the company’s largest and offers numerous products like a bakery, deli, beer and wine department and a Starbucks.

The company operates out of Virginia with 138 locations across Tennessee, Kentucky, Georgia and Alabama. Food City operates as an ESOP firm, meaning the employees have stock in the company’s future and growth. Smith said about 18,000 employees take advantage of this and own about 13 percent of the company.


The post Cookeville’s Food City Open For Business appeared first on News Talk 94.1/AM 1600.