After a Sept. 25 ribbon cutting ceremony attended by more than 100 people, Oakhurst's new Grocery Outlet Bargain Market held grand opening events last weekend including give-a-ways, prizes at the wheel of margins, face painting for the children, and complimentary coffee and treats.
More than 3,500 enthusiastic shoppers visited the store during the first four days seeking out the advertised 30-60 percent discounts on brand-name products.
Janet Gott, of Fresno, was visiting her sister in North Fork Saturday and they decided to come see the town's newest retailer.
"I shop in the Clovis Grocery Outlet Bargain Market and the Oakhurst store is larger, has more variety of products, more brand names and great prices," Gott said.
The owners of the Oakhurst store are Brandon and Jessica Steele, who recently located to Oakhurst with their 3-year-old daughter and 1-year-old son from northern California.
"The grand opening has been very exciting and busy and we want to thank the community for their support," Jessica said.
The Steele's started their grocery careers in Clear Lake where Jessica's parents own a Grocery Outlet.
Prior to the opening, the couple said they love the company and what it stands for family owned and community oriented.
The couple applied for the store in May and were notified in early July they were selected to be the store's owners.
"We were so ecstatic when we found out that we had been chosen to own the Oakhurst store because we wanted to move here so bad," Jessica said. "When we saw Oakhurst was the location of a new store, we decided to check it. 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."
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 stores in Arizona.
The store will feature groceries, deli, produce, frozen food, meat, health and beauty products, beer and wine, vitamins, toys, gifts and general merchandise.
"The company is able to do this because we have great buyers for each department who go out and negotiate good prices," Brandon said.
The store, which employs more than 30 Mountain Area residents, is holding a drawing and entries will be taken through Friday, Nov. 1. Drawing prizes include free groceries for a year, two bicycles purchased at Yosemite Bike Shop in Oakhurst, fishing poles from Sportsmen's Den, and a 55-inch flat screen TV from Sears of Oakhurst.
Store hours are 7 a.m. - 9 p.m. daily.
Details: (559) 683-2400.