On May 27 the wait came to an end as Sikeston city officials along with members of the Sikeston Area Chamber of Commerce and the personnel at Walgreens officially cut the ribbon, opening the new store.
"We're excited about bringing Walgreens to Sikeston," said manager Dewayne Johnson. "We've hired an outstanding staff whose focus will be delivering exceptional customer service to this community. We believe customers will appreciate the level of convenience they'll find in services like our drive-thru pharmacy, automatic prescription refills and our nationwide network of pharmacies."
The new Walgreens will carry 25,000 everyday items, including medications, fine fragrances and cosmetics, Hallmark greeting cards, soft drinks, dairy products, frozen foods and snacks. Customers will find a selection of cameras and film in the photo department along with convenient services such as instant passport photos and one-hour photofinishing. Walgreens photo specialists can also turn pictures into greeting cards, calendars, mouse pads and more.
Walgreens advanced pharmacy system, Intercom Plus, links all its pharmacies, keeps customer records and helps the pharmacist prepare prescriptions.
"The system allows the pharmacist to spend more time counseling patients," said Johnson. "It makes it possible for Sikeston customers to refill prescriptions at any of our thousands of stores across the country."
Walgreens customers can also take advantage of Auto Prefills, a system that will mark monthly medications to be refilled automatically, then calls or sends an e-mail to remind customers the prescription is ready for pick up. Walgreens is the only the pharmacy that offers prescription labels in 14 languages and large-type drug information sheets for the visually impaired.
Opening a store in Sikeston is part of the company's efforts to reach a wider market with the aging of baby boomers and the increasing interest in healthy lifestyles. "We are always looking for opportunities to serve more customers in new and existing markets. This is a growing community that we felt was underserved with pharmacy services. We also were able to find the right, convenient location that will make shopping with us very easy for customers," he said.
According to Johnson, the 24 full and part-time employees at the new Sikeston store worked hard to ensure all the merchandise is in place for the opening of the store which includes 11,000 square feet of sales area along with the 800 square-foot pharmacy.
With nearly six years of experience with Walgreens, including serving as manager for two stores in the St. Louis area, Johnson said he and the other Walgreens employees will be emphasizing customer satisfaction.
"I feel like we are a direct reflection of the community. We want our customers to feel this is convenient and they are being well-served. That is how you keep customers," he said.
He pointed out in addition to the trained pharmacy staff, the store will have full-time trained beauty advisors to help in the selection of beauty and skincare products. A photo specialist will be on hand to assist with customers' digital and conventional photo needs.
"Our focus," he concluded, "is on customers and being the best drugstore service in America."
Walgreens is the nation's largest drugstore chain, with 4,783 stores in 45 states and Puerto Rico.
The Sikeston store will be open from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily with the pharmacy staffed from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday and from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday.