TRURO – A long lineup of hundreds of people in the Truro Mall by 6:30 a.m. marked the opening of Winners in Truro Thursday morning.
An estimated 300 people, some arriving at about 6 a.m., were lined up from Winners, near the former Zellers end of the mall, to Sportchek.
“I usually have to drive to Halifax so I’m glad Winners is here,” said a Great Village resident who didn’t want to be identified but was at the mall at 6 a.m.
A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held inside the store before customers were welcomed in. Staff handed out carts to eager shoppers and clapped as people flocked to their favourite departments.
Truro’s Brenda Carroll arrived at the mall at 7:10 a.m., excited for the opening. She believes Winners will bring more shoppers to the mall, which will benefit many stores and employees.
“It will bring more out to the mall and maybe people from out of town as well. There wasn’t much business in the mall before this,” said Carroll as she headed towards the home décor section.
Carroll said she didn’t think a new big-box store in the area will take away from the smaller, locally-owned businesses.
“I think people will still support the community.”
For Bible Hill’s Justin Coleman, 24, it’s all about the brand names.
“It carries brand names that people 18 to their mid-20s like,” he said, showing off a DC Fox sweater.
“The prices are good, it’s cheaper here … I hope it survives,” Coleman said.
Other shoppers commented on how spacious the store was, and every department had a steady flow of people adding items to their shopping carts.
Cathy Lynch, assistant manager, used to work at the Winners store in New Glasgow. She said people consistently asked about a store for Truro.
“People … young adults to seniors … would ask,
‘when are you coming to Truro,’” Lynch said, adding the early-morning crowd was expected.
According to staff, there will usually be five people working on cash at a time, however, there were up to nine for the opening. More than 40 staff were working for the opening and there are more than 50 staff in total.