Food Giant overview

Images, such as this aerial view of downtown Murray, were used to give the Food Giant grocery store a local feel as part of a massive renovation.

MURRAY —Since April, customers at the Food Giant grocery store on Murray’s south side have become accustomed to searching for items in different places. 

That was because the store was undergoing a massive renovation that required such things as the produce aisle literally moving from one area of the store to another, just as one example. The idea was for the work to result in a more modern appearance, and that appears to have happened with new shelving, refrigerator units and flooring being part of the plan. 

However, along with the new, there has been a massive injection of the old, the most prevalent of which is in the form of the many old photographs of Murray that now are displayed throughout the store. 

“We got the pictures from (local artist) Karl Flood, and it was about showing old memories of Murray,” said Food Giant Manager Dawn Schade, who has been at the Murray business for 26 years. Friday marked the grand re-opening of the store with numerous activities, some of which involved local charitable organizations, being included. “It’s got a hometown community feel.

“A lot of (customers) have come up and thanked me because they felt the store really needed (a redo).”

Store Supervisor Steve Everly of Madisonville said the fact that vintage photos were obtained without too much difficulty says a lot for Murray in general. 

“A lot of times, you have communities that want you to pay a fee or they want you to go here or there and you get the runaround,” Everly said. “We’re very thankful that we found these the way we did. In fact, one of them I think is an old Food Giant photo from here in the 1970s.

“I hope we’ve done this town justice with what we’ve done and what we’ve accomplished. We’re here to serve the people and I hope they enjoy the store.”

Everly said the overall grocery area did see a space reduction due to the types of shelving being used. He also said that, while the deli area is open, he said it probably is about six weeks from completion, with some small details still to be handled. 

Another area still to be refurbished is the front office area, just inside the customer entrance. Schade said this was already going to have a sleek new look even before some unexpected discoveries were made. Now, items, such as 1960s glass bottles for Coca-Cola and Pepsi, are going to be part of a display case that she said will be designed to provide customers with even more nostalgia as they enter. 

“We found amazing things on the floors and inside the walls when we were redoing them,” Schade said. “It’s been about 50 or 60 years since (the store) was redone and we just kept finding collector’s items.”  

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