New Walmart Opens in Joplin Nov. 9

 Community Invited to Five Days of Festivities

JOPLIN, Mo., Nov. 3, 2011 – Less than six months after a devastating tornado swept through Joplin, Walmart is re-opening with a new 189,000-square-foot store on the site of its earlier store. The new Walmart at 1501 S. Range Line Road will open to the public at 8 a.m., Wednesday, Nov. 9.

“Joplin is our home and we are honored to be part of its rebuilding. This is another step forward for our community,” said store manager Andy Martin. "On behalf of the 420 associates who work here and our entire company, we want to welcome everyone back into the Joplin Walmart. We’re glad to open before the holidays so everyone can take advantage of great savings for Christmas."

New Store Offers Larger Sales Floor

The new Walmart features a larger sales floor and a layout designed to make the shopping experience more convenient for customers. In addition, the new store has two drive-thru pharmacy lanes and a state-of-the-art automotive department.

A bright interior color palette creates an inviting shopping experience and helps define the store’s merchandise areas. Lower shelving creates an improved sightline and directional signage on every aisle helps customers find what they are looking for quickly. Walmart also combined the customer service desk, Site-to-Store pick-up location and photo lab in one area near the entrance, giving customers easy access.

Environmentally Friendly Features

The new Walmart is the first in Missouri to have energy-efficient LED lighting in the parking lot. The LED lighting not only saves energy costs, but also lasts longer than traditional lighting.

The store itself includes energy-efficient technology and environmentally friendly features to reduce energy and water consumption and minimize waste. The store’s skylights harvest daylight and reduce the amount of energy required to light the store by up to 75 percent daily. LED lighting in parts of the store operates 70 percent more efficiently than traditional fluorescent lighting.

The cement used in the concrete flooring is made with recycled materials, and the store includes other materials recycled from the original Walmart. Low-flow toilets and faucets reduce the water used in the bathrooms. The new store also operates a recycling program that includes organic composting and will promote sustainable product purchases.

Community Organizations Benefit from Grand-Opening Grants

Walmart and the Walmart Foundation are donating more than $1 million in gifts and in-kind donations to Joplin’s recovery. Grants being given in connection with the grand opening celebration include:

  • Missouri Army National Guard HHC 203rd Engr. Bn. - $1,000
  • U.S. Army Reserve 414th MP Co. - $1,000
  • Webb City Police Department - $1,250
  • Webb City Fire Department - $1,250
  • Animal Adoption and Resource Center (formerly Joplin Humane Society) - $2,000
  • Joplin Police Department - $2,500
  • Joplin Fire Department - $2,500
  • Carl Junction Police/Fire Department - $2,500
  • Duquesne Police Department - $1,250
  • Duenweg Volunteer Fire Department - $1,250
  • Carterville Police/Fire Department - $2,500
  • Seneca Police/Fire Department - $2,500
  • Eastern Shawnee Tribe Police Department - $3,000
  • Watered Gardens - $25,000
  • Children's Haven of SW MO - $30,000
  • Freeman-Oak Hill Health System - $30,000
  • Boys and Girls Club of SW Missouri - $33,000
  • Joplin Area Catholic Schools - $35,000
  • St. John's Hospital Foundation - $40,000
  • Joplin R-VIII School District - $45,000

Week-Long Celebration for Community

The grand opening will kick off five days of free, fun events for the community. They include:

  • Wednesday, Nov. 9 – Free coats for kids, 3 p.m. There will be free coats for Joplin-area children ages 4-18 while supplies last (one coat per child).
  • Thursday, Nov. 10 – Health and wellness day. The Colgate Smiles dental van will offer free dental check-ups for children, the Red Cross Blood Mobile will be conducting a blood drive and Walmart will offer free health screenings (blood cholesterol and glucose).
  • Friday, Nov. 11 – Cash cube and movie night. Pick up your tickets at the store to attend a viewing of “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2” at the Missouri Southern State University football stadium. Free blankets and snacks will be available.
  • Saturday, Nov. 12 – School spirit day. A marching band performance at noon kicks off the fun, with Joplin Eagles items being given away and appearances by the boys’ and girls’ basketball teams and cheerleaders, as well as a NASCAR simulator.
  • Sunday, Nov. 13 – Holiday portraits and toys. Families can have a free holiday portrait made courtesy of Fujifilm, and children will receive a free toy from 1-5 p.m. while supplies last.

Ribbon-Cutting Celebration 8 a.m., Nov. 9

Community and business leaders will join Walmart associates at 8 a.m., Wednesday, Nov. 9, for a brief ribbon-cutting ceremony before the store opens to the public. Store associates will perform the national anthem, and the Joplin JROTC will present the colors. Martin and other associates will cut the ribbon to the new store.

About Walmart
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE: WMT) serves customers and members more than 200 million times per week at over 9,600 retail units under 69 different banners in 28 countries. With fiscal year 2011 sales of $419 billion, Walmart employs 2.1 million associates worldwide. Walmart continues to be a leader in sustainability, corporate philanthropy and employment opportunity. Additional information about Walmart can be found by visiting http://walmartstores.com and on Twitter at http://twitter.com/walmart. Online merchandise sales are available at http://www.walmart.com and http://www.samsclub.com.