Huntington Beach mayor Debbie Cook (pictured below with scissors in hand), joined by Fresh & Easy executives and store employees, cut a ribbon before the store's doors officially opened to kick-off the market's grand opening celebration.
Fresh & Easy store associates presented a $1,000 check to representatives of the West County Boys and Girls Club, a local non-profit youth group. The retailer donates $1,000 to a local community organization each time it opens a new store.
According to sources at the grand opening, there were about 100 people--some waiting in line, others arriving shortly after the store opened--who packed the store when it opened.
Huntington Beach is located in Southern California's Orange County, which is a key target region for Fresh & Easy stores. A second store in Huntington Beach is set to open soon. Additionally, a store located in the Orange County city of Fountain Valley is scheduled to be open shortly. These two stores will bring the total number of Fresh & Easy stores in Orange County to date to about six, with many more on the way.
Our sources at the grand opening said shoppers crowded the aisles after the store opened, picking up grocery items and prepared foods. The store offered free samples of its prepared foods as part of the grand opening celebration.
They further told us that many of the shoppers compared the Fresh & Easy to Trader Joe's. Many also commented they liked the fact that, unlike Trader Joe's, the Fresh & Easy grocery market offers basic grocery and non-foods items, both under the Fresh & Easy label, as well as national brands.
(Note: Photographs of yesterday's Fresh & Easy store grand opening in Huntington Beach courtesy of "Greetings From Downtown Huntington Beach.")