As the Big Country loses 4 Walmart Express locations (Anson, Haskell, Winters, and Merkel), a new Walmart is being built in the Key City. Bringing Abilene’s total of Walmart locations to 3, many wonder if this is the first of many positive changes for the city coffers in 2016.
A Walmart Express is scheduled to be built at the old site of the University Baptist Church in Abilene. The new store currently under construction there is “scheduled to proceed as planned,” according to Walmart.
Residents of the towns losing Walmart are upset. Roscoe Jefferson told the Examiner “They’re a multi-national corporation, if we can’t trust them, who CAN we trust?”
Abilene however is all smiles. We spoke with Duane Peters, director of Abilene Tourism, just before noon.
“Abilene really is a value-oriented community”, said Peters. “I mean, hell, we still have a K-Mart! How many towns or cities in Texas can claim that?” Peters then announced that Abilene’s city motto would soon be changing. “Honestly, the whole “Storybook Capital of Texas” thing was a makeshift solution. While some tourists take pictures with the statues, the general public couldn’t care less. Frankly, half of them couldn’t even read Dr. Seuss.”
After a short executive session, Peters announced the new motto; Abilene; 10 Items or Less. A large ‘blue light’ will be erected near Kirby Lake, greeting visitors entering town on the Winters Freeway. QR code posters will be set up around town, so residents and visitors can scan for Taco Bueno coupons, Gallery Warehouse Furniture special offers, and, of course, a complimentary wallpaper from Walmart.com. Statues paying homage to Sam Walton, S. S. Kresge, Richard Warren Sears (who the Sears Park area of Abilene is already named after), and Alvah Curtis Roebuck will round out “Shopper’s Faire Park”, located on the yard of Frontier Texas. Peters stated that in the future, he can’t rule out Frontier Texas converting to a Walmart.
The moves follow other municipalities who have adopted more ‘down to earth’ slogans over the past few years, including Brownwood (At least we aren’t Coleman), San Angelo (We have an arroyo, yo), Sweetwater (Don’t drink it) and Knox City, who simply erected a large phallus near the courthouse square.
(Below, artists rendition of ‘blue light special’)