After months of construction, Hobby Lobby officially opened the doors to its new Waxahachie location Monday.
An eager line of customers stretched down the side of the building and into the parking lot waiting for the 9 a.m. opening.
“I would like to welcome everyone here this morning. I want to thank you all for coming in and supporting our grand opening for our new store,” said store manager James Simpkins. “We have had a tremendous job from an army of people to get everything set up and done. The businesses on both sides have been very helpful to us in helping to get this store open and get it going.”
According to Hobby Lobby’s website, each store offers more than 70,000 arts, crafts, hobbies, home décor, holiday and seasonal products. Simpkins said the store has a wide range of products that caters to everyone’s interest.
“We have fabrics; we have crafts over on our right side. We keep seasonal products that rotate in and out. We have home décor all the way through the middle of our store,” Simpkins said. “There is a little bit there for everybody. A lot of guys say there is nothing there I need until they get back to the crafts.”
Debbie Kensy, Hobby Lobby Director of Management Ministries, said the community has been eager about having a location open in Waxahachie.
“One of the things people say when we come into a community is that we bring life to buildings. I am telling you there is nothing that brings a smile to our face more than when we realize we brought life to a building and that we offer people jobs,” Kensy said. “All of our stores have one foot print and we all try to offer that same customer service with the same merchandise and same pricing.”
Kensy said the company has been getting phone calls for the past four years asking when they are going to come to the city. Hobby Lobby has more than 600 stores across the country. The location opening in Waxahachie was one of four new Hobby Lobby stores opening on Monday. The other locations are in Georgia, Washington State and one on the border of California and Arizona, Kensy said.
The renovation of the building took months to complete. During the construction, the entire shopping center was re-faced. At the request of Office Depot, it’s building was downsized from 27,500 to 15,600 square feet to accommodate its new business model and a wall was moved. This was to accommodate Hobby Lobby’s 55,000 square feet of retail space.
Irwin Kerner, the property owner, said this project could not have taken place without the work of people working together.
“We could not have been more pleased. The city was so helpful — Doug Barnes, Clyde Melick, Michael Scott and Paul Stevens. These folks have been a joy to work with. They have helped us all a long the way to get this done,” Kerner said. “We are really looking forward to Hobby Lobby being successful here as I am sure they will be.”
On hand for Monday’s grand opening was Joetta Jackson, who browsed the artificial flowers on display.
“None of the stores have flowers like this. That is the reason why I am here,” Jackson said. “It is great and I’m going to be back.”
The Hobby Lobby in Waxahachie is located at 1201 N. U.S. Highway 77. It is open 9 a.m. -8 p.m. Monday through Saturday and closed on Sunday. For more information about the store, call 972-923-8950 or visit www.hobbylobby.com.
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