Walmart pulls out; Where to buy groceries? - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Walmart pulls out; Where to buy groceries?

Heather Shiver Heather Shiver
Beverly Manning Beverly Manning
Henry Johnson, Jr. Henry Johnson, Jr.
City Mgr. Jim Hedges City Mgr. Jim Hedges
PELHAM, GA (WALB) -

Walmart is closing almost half a dozen stores in South Georgia.  Some shoppers in Pelham are having to find a new place to shop.

This time last year, the Pelham Walmart off Barrow Avenue was celebrating its grand opening.  But as the store officially closes tonight, customers say the excitement was short lived. 

Heather Shiver made one last trip to Walmart. A bittersweet shopping spree for customers,  who on the one hand saved 75% off everything left on the shelves,  but on the other hand lost a hot spot to shop.

"It's very convenient because of getting gas and running in for quick cupcakes when they have something going on at school. Or just groceries," said Shiver.

But now as the store closes its doors officially, folks say they'll have to travel several more miles to get items they used to buy right down the street.

"It's been nice for me, because whatever I need I always come down to this store down here because the other stores don't have it. So I come down here to get it.  Now I have to kind of shop around and go to the other stores," said Henry Johnson Jr.

"It was convenient. I didn't have to go to Camilla, I didn't have to go to Moultrie, I didn't have to go to Cairo, or Thomas County," Beverly Manning said.

And the future is uncertain for current employees.

"It's a small town and a lot of people need to work.  And you know, that's sad," Johnson said.

But City Manager Jim Hedges assures residents that there are other stores available to keep money local. "Our hope right now is that, working together with Walmart, at their corporate level, we'll be able to get someone to come into Pelham that will fill the void that they're leaving in our community."

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