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Runnings to bring 40 jobs to Wellsville with store in former Kmart building

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BY JOHN ANDERSON

Runnings, which has a slogan, “Your Home, Farm and Outdoor Store” is based in Marshall, Minn. The new Wellsville store at the Riverwalk Shopping Plaza will be their 11th in New York state.

Runnings officials said they hope to bring 40 jobs to the Wellsville store. On their website (runnings.com) and their Facebook and Instagram pages, there are photos and deals on clothes and other accessories sold at the store.

In a release, Runnings officials said, “Today, an agreement has been reached with Riverwalk, Inc. affiliated with The L.C Whitford Company, to purchase a former Kmart building in Wellsville, New York. The Minnesota based general merchandise retailer will renovate the vacant 94,000 square foot building into a new retail store as part of the revitalization of the Riverwalk Plaza.”

Wellsville Mayor Randy Shayler said an email from Clint Gilkey received a positive response about a year ago. It turned out, Runnings was already talking to L.C. Whitford. 

“I know from the early contact the village’s economic development board, made with an email from Clint Gilkey, the chairman of that board, it has been a process we have been eagerly working on,” Shayler told the Wellsville Sun. “We are excited for Running. In New York state, and every other state they are in, they bring a lot to the communities and I think they will be a welcome addition to the Wellsville area.”

Shayler added, “I spoke to their chief operating officer, they are a class act and will be a fine addition to this community.”

Here is more from Runnings and the L.C. Whitford Company from the release:

“As we looked at our plans for the plaza, we felt that an important piece of the expansion was finding a strong retail partner for the building.” said Brad Whitford, President of L.C Whitford Company. “We’re very excited to finally have Runnings on board. It will be a momentous thing for Wellsville.”

The building, located on 121 Bolivar Road, sits on five acres of land, and has been empty since 2018 when Kmart closed its doors. Runnings has a long-standing history of purchasing vacant retail stores and renovating them to serve the needs of new customers.

In a statement, Craig Clark, the Executive Director of the Allegany County Industrial Development Agency said, “(ACIDA) looks forward to working with Runnings on this project. It’s a much-needed addition to Allegany County.”

Celebrating its 75th year of business, Runnings and has grown from its early days as an automotive supply and farm store to a large general merchandise retailer selling an extensive selection of sporting goods, clothing, pet supplies, tools, farm supplies, footwear, lawn and garden supplies, and outdoor equipment. The privately owned, family run retailer also sells hunting, fishing, and archery equipment and accessories, as well as firearms. 

The new store is scheduled to open in early 2023 and will employ a team of approximately 40 full and part time members.  

About Runnings:

Founded in 1947, Runnings is a privately held general merchandise retailer owned by the Dennis and Adele Reed Family. The company currently has 57 stores and employs more than 2,700 workers across seven states. The company sells an extensive selection of sporting goods, clothing, footwear, pet supplies, housewares, tools, farm supplies, lawn and garden supplies, toys, and outdoor equipment. For more information visit us at  HYPERLINK http://www.runnings.com

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