Ace Hardware store opens

Nathan Oster

Earlier than expected and just in time for Christmas came the soft opening Tuesday, Dec. 20 of the new Greybull Ace Hardware store on North Sixth Street.

Shane McInroy, district manager for Ridley’s Family Markets, had indicated in mid-November that it would likely take about eight weeks to set up the store.

“I know we said early in 2023, but we kind of planned for this — we didn’t want to get anyone’s hopes up,” said McInroy. “We do just consider this a soft opening, not a grand opening. 

“We’ve still got lot of work to do before then, but figured we were far enough ahead that we could open the doors today.”

The store has hired a mix of 12 to 14 full- and part-time employees.

“The workforce came together pretty quickly,” McInroy said, adding, “We had a lot of great applicants.”

Based in Twin Falls, Idaho, Ridley’s operates 30 grocery stores and 12 Ace Hardware stores spread out across Idaho, Utah, Nevada, Wyoming and Colorado.

The company has only one other Ace Hardware location in Wyoming.  It’s a combination setup featuring a Ridley’s, an Ace and an Outfitter Liquor.

The other Ridley’s stores in Wyoming are in Kemmerer, Laramie, Sheridan and Casper, where it also operates an Outfitter Liquor.

Michael and Pamela Gorski were among the first to wander the aisles and check out the store’s inventory on Tuesday morning. 

“I like it — it has a good variety of everything,” said Pamela. “No need to drive to Worland or Cody anymore when you can find it here. “

Frances Mayer, a Greybull resident, said she’d seen advertisements announcing that the store would be opening soon.

“I’ve been looking forward to it,” she said. “When I saw on Facebook that it was opening today, I told my husband, ‘We’re going to see what they have.’”

Frances said she’s hopeful the new competition will prompt existing businesses to lower their prices.  If that were to happen, it would be a win for customers.

She began her trek through the store in the apparel section, which she was excited to see. “I think we need a better clothing store in this town — maybe another grocery store, too, to compete against the one we have.”

Ace is closed Christmas Day, but will be open 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. seven days a week.

In the midst of all the hustle and bustle happening around them, it was business as usual for the folks at Greybull Pharmacy on Tuesday.  

Ross Davidson, the owner, was planning to have a gate installed by day’s end, since the two businesses will have different hours. Greybull Pharmacy’s have not changed — they are still 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. to noon Saturday.