Albertsons celebrates remodel with samples, activities, donations

Albertsons Store Manager Brian Swartwood, second from left, and courtesy clerk Antonio Vega cut the ceremonial ribbon to mark the grand re-opening of Albertsons after a two-month remodel. At far right is District Manager Susie Citizen. Sentinel photo/Karen Brainard
Albertsons Store Manager Brian Swartwood, second from left, and courtesy clerk Antonio Vega cut the ceremonial ribbon to mark the grand re-opening of Albertsons after a two-month remodel. At far right is District Manager Susie Citizen. Sentinel photo/Karen Brainard

Albertsons celebrated the completion of its two-month remodeling project with a grand re-opening that included a ribbon cutting, free samples, in-store  activities and donations.

Brian Swartwood, store director, presented $1,000 donations to the Ramona Food and Clothes Closet, Ramona Senior Center, and Ramona High School for its band and cheer programs. Ramona High Principal Christopher King suggested the donation be split between cheer and band, Swartwood said. Both high school groups entertained in front of the store with music and cheers.

Also attending was Albertsons District Manager Susie Citizen, who will be moving to Ramona.

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On behalf of Alberstons, Store Director Brian Swartwood presents a $1,000 donation to the Ramona Food and Clothes Closet, represented by board secretary Mary Halliday, left, and service manager Vesna Curry. Sentinel photo/Karen Brainard

Swartwood introduced his department heads and singled out courtesy clerk Antonio Vega to help him cut the ceremonial ribbon, commending the employee for his assistance during the remodel and for always wearing a smile.

Among vendors providing food samplings were Dietz & Watson with a hot dog cart and Canasta Tortilla Company with Chef Gustavo Pola filling fresh tortillas with beef and a guacamole prepared with avocado, watermelon and goat cheese.

The remodel includes expanded selection of hot foods in the service deli, a new organic section and fresh-cut fruits and vegetables in the produce department, and a greater selection of premium meats, chicken, kabobs and meal solutions in the Butcher Block.

"Our store is sporting a new look inside and out," said Swartwood. "We've added over 1,000 new items within the center store

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Ramona High School cheerleaders and band members pose with Albertsons Store Manager Brian Swartwood, center, after he presents them with a $1,000 donation on behalf of the store. Sentinel photo/Karen Brainard

areas as well as the home, health and beauty departments."

The bakery department added a large freezer case filled with an assortment of desserts and a new 10-foot cake case featuring trending children's and high-end celebration cakes, the store noted.

The liquor department has been updated with 24 feet of space for new beer  varieties and 16 additional feet for local craft beers.

Upgrades include a new customer service center, renovated bathrooms and associate-staffed express lanes replacing the self check-out lanes.

—Karen Brainard

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Denise Wolverton, who works in Albertsons' bakery, stands ready to serve cake to customers at the grand re-opening of the grocery store on Aug. 13. Sentinel photo/Karen Brainard
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Sentinel photo/Karen Brainard
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Nic Jenkins, left, serves free Dietz and Watson hot dogs to Bill and Vivien Baker. Sentinel photo/Karen Brainard
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Albertsons meat clerk Will Burner wraps rib-eye steaks for Ramonan Wayne Clark at the newly-expanded meat counter. Sentinel photo/Karen Brainard
   
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