While we are shocked to learn our local Wal-Mart (WM) will close on January 28th maybe we can look beyond the news and remember what our community did before we were introduced to one-stop shopping.
I envision some of the associates going to work at our local hardware which could increase inventory because demand will be higher. Our remaining grocery store will probably need more employees since their business should increase. Maybe someone will open a hunting and fishing supply store. Our butcher shop might increase inventory and could pick up business. The new Dollar Tree will have a large grocery section with frozen foods, this should open by May. We could have our farmers market open year round for fresh produce. All positives for our community.
The Chamber has already been contacted by a local fast food company with 23 stores in our area, they are in need of managers and plan to have local application days scheduled shortly in Winnsboro.
There may be some entrepreneurs just waiting to open a mom and pop shop. I so often hear stories about Congress Streets’ thriving businesses back in the day, is that in our future?
Of course Wal-Mart will be working to place associates in other WM stores, they will help with resumes and interview techniques. SC Works is preparing a Rapid Response Team to be on the ground in Winnsboro shortly. They will work with displaced employees to help fill some of the 200+ job openings that exist in our County.
I feel this lemon we received today will soon become lemonade for our community.
Terry N. Vickers
Fairfield County Chamber of Commerce