While major remodeling is transforming the former Sierra Lanes bowling alley into a Grocery Outlet Bargain Market, Brandon and Jessica Steele, the store's new owners, have been busy moving into their new home near Deadwood Mountain.
The store is scheduled to open Sept. 26 at 40301 Junction Drive.
Most of the interior walls are completed and all the electrical is currently being done. The demolition of the bowling alley was done by Randy Papike Construction and the general contractor for the remodel is Tilton Pacific of Rocklin and San Jose, who has built or remodeled about 70% of the stores across the country.
"The remodel is moving quickly and is on schedule to be completed for our opening," Brandon said.
High school sweethearts in Eureka, Brandon and Jessica, have moved to town with their daughter Mckenna, 3, and son Ryder, 1, and are looking forward to opening their new store.
Grocery Outlet was established in 1946 when Jim Read began purchasing military surplus and sold it at huge discounts. Today, Grocery Outlet is a third-generation family run business with nearly 200 independently owned and operated stores in California, Idaho, Nevada, Oregon, Washington, and two in Arizona.
The store will feature groceries, deli, produce, frozen, meat, health and beauty products, beer and wine, vitamins, toys, gifts and general merchandise, and is known for carrying brand products discounted 40-60%.
"The company is able to do this because we have great buyers for each department who go out and negotiate a good price for our customers," Brandon said. Part of buying opportunistically makes our customers shopping experience a treasure hunt."
The store will also carry a limited line of clothing including men's and women's apparel.
"Our clothing inventory will change constantly but will include brand names such as Gap, Old Navy, Haines, Fruit of the Loom and Alo.
There are two Grocery Outlet stores in Fresno and one in Clovis. The Fresno stores are located at 1825 East Ashland and 3566 West Shaw.
The Steele's started their grocery careers in Clearlake where Jessica's parents own a Grocery Outlet.
"We fell in love with the company and what it stands for family owned and community orientated," Jessica said.
The Steele's applied for the store in May and were notified in early July they were selected to be the store's owners.
"When we saw Oakhurst was the location of a new store, we decided to check it out since we knew it was a small area like we are used to. When we visited we saw how beautiful the area is, and how friendly everyone was. We knew at that point we could call Oakhurst home forever."
"We were so ecstatic when we found out that we had been chosen to own the store because we wanted to move here so bad," Jessica said.
We both grew up in small towns and love knowing everyone in the community," Jessica said. "That is one of the reasons we fell in love with Oakhurst. We wanted to give our children the ability to grow up in a place where they will know everyone. It is very important for us to know our customers by their first names and build strong relationships with them."
Brandon said they wanted to find a location where we they could give back to the community in many ways.
"Some of our passions are Relay for Life, coaching youth sports and being involved in our church," Brandon said.
Job fair Aug. 29 and 30
The store will be accepting resumes in front of the store noon to 6 p.m., Thursday and Friday, Aug. 29 and 30. At that time interviews with prospective employees will be set up for the following week.
More than 30 employees are expected to be hired for the store.
Prospective employees can also apply on-line at groceryoutlet.com and click on the "job opportunities" link at top of page and select Oakhurst store.
Grand opening Sept. 28
Although the store will open Sept. 26, a grand opening featuring drawings, free balloons for children, and a hot dog, chips and soda lunch for $1, will be held Saturday. Sept. 28. The Kiwanis Club will be passing out balloons and serving lunch with proceeds going to the club.
Drawing prizes will include free groceries for a year, two bicycles purchased at Yosemite Bike Shop in Oakhurst, fishing pole set from Sportsmen's Den, and a 55-inch flat screen TV from Sears of Oakhurst.
The store will also have a "win what you save" program for customers to enter.
"Entering is as easy as writing your name and number on the bottom of the receipt, tearing off the bottom of the receipt then placing the receipt in a box," Jessica said. "Every month we will pick a name and whatever your savings were we will give you a gift card for the amount of your savings."
Grocery Outlet will give a pallet of food valued at $1,000 to Manna House during the grand opening.
Details: Facebook: https:/ Oakhurst Grocery Outlet.