Walmart sets February 1 opening date

Walmart employees Nicole Schmidt, back, and Kimberly Paxton stock shelves at the new Princeton Walmart store on Wednesday, Dec. 19, a day after the first truck of merchandise arrived at the store. Walmart will open at 8 a.m. on February 1, 2013.

Walmart employees Nicole Schmidt, back, and Kimberly Paxton stock shelves at the new Princeton Walmart store on Wednesday, Dec. 19, a day after the first truck of merchandise arrived at the store. Walmart will open at 8 a.m. on February 1, 2013.

The new Walmart store in Princeton may not have been open last week to cater to busy holiday shoppers. But there was no shortage of activity at the store in the week before Christmas as associates prepared for the store’s opening.

Construction of the 120,000-square foot store is nearly completed.

“We’re opening early next year,” store manager Tim Gould said.

Signs of the front door of the store, located at 300 21st Avenue N., read, “Attention customers. Your Princeton Walmart is opening soon. We will be opening on February 1, 2013 @ 8 a.m. Thank you for your patience as we prepare to open your store.”

“With major construction complete on this store, we are now headed into the home stretch for our grand opening,” Gould said.

“Our next steps are to complete interior cosmetic touch-ups and continue with associate training,” he said.

Many of the store’s newly-hired associates have begun stocking the shelves in anticipation of Walmart’s opening. On Tuesday, Dec. 18, the first truck of merchandise arrived at the store, Gould said. For the first time last week, the store began being open 24-hours a day as around-the-clock preparations began in earnest.

“We are proud of our new store and look forward to welcoming members of the Princeton community when it opens,” Gould said.

A small sign inside the store today read 36 days until opening day.

“We’re getting things set up so we can be ready to roll,” Gould said.

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