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Local Medina County News

Big changes at Big Lots

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    Big Lots team employee Terra Gross, rewards member Tina Hile, team leader Jen Taraba and customer Wanda Radke participated in the ribbon-cutting at Big Lots to celebrate its grand reopening.

    ALYSSA ALFANO / GAZETTE

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BRUNSWICK — The Columbus-based retailer with the exclamation point in its name synonymous with affordable shopping reopened its Brunswick store Friday after a recent makeover designed to shift the consumer experience.

Big Lots, 1733 Pearl Road, reopened with a new feel and layout. The Brunswick store is one of 14 stores in the Cleveland area that recently underwent a remodel.

“They remodeled basically the entire store — new floors, new ceilings and new counters, said team leader Jen Taraba. “They brought most of the furniture up front in most of the stores.”

Assistant team leader Jen Ramsey said the company is aiming to change its image.

“Big Lots is getting away from the reputation of being a scratch and dent store,” she said. “This is nice, new merchandise that maybe people didn’t recognize before.”

The employees have known about the remodel last year. The store was shut down for four weeks for the work to be done. As such, customers are not the only ones experiencing the look and feel of a new store.

“I feel, as an hourly, that it’s kind of like I’m starting a new job,” said Colleen Smathers, a Big Lots employee.

Smathers said this is because everything is brand-new and better organized.

“I think it greatly benefits the customers,” Taraba said. “They’re coming into, basically, a new atmosphere.”

On Friday, the first 50 customers received a reusable shopping bag filled with a gifts from Big Lots.

In addition, the store donated $5 to Habitat for Humanity of Medina County each time a “Big Rewards” loyalty member redeemed an award. The program allows customers to earn discounts and rewards with purchases.

Other locations that held grand reopening celebrations Friday included Lorain, Elyria, North Olmsted, Parma Heights, Parma, Aurora, Willoughby, Chardon, Beachwood, Garfield and Mentor.

The Brunswick store is open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday.

Contact reporter Alyssa Alfano at (330) 721-4063 or aalfano@medina-gazette.com.
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