With speeches, cheers and a prayer, Tacoma’s first Walmart store opened Wednesday morning.
Dozens of patrons waited for the doors to open at 8 a.m. as Walmart officials and dignitaries gathered in a semicircle before a makeshift stage to bear witness to $68,000 in charitable contributions and a brief history of the company which, on Wednesday, saw the opening of 24 stores nationwide and two in state – in Tacoma and Vancouver.
“Building this store has been a journey,” said Tom McReynolds, a Walmart manager who oversees nine stores in the Puget Sound.
“I love Walmart. I wanted to be among the first to christen the new Walmart and see what I can buy,” said customer Islena Jones.
Although controversial at its inception, the store generated no protests at the opening.