EASLEY — Belk held a grand re-opening ceremony recently and donated $1,000 to charity as part of a company-wide revamping of the department store chain.
The celebration, held Oct. 4, represents the kick off of a $40 million company investment in remodels, new stores and capital improvements, Easley store manager Jeanine Farrant said.
Customers lined up outside the newly renovated Easley store to be one of the first 100 shoppers who received free gift cards and took part in register-to-win giveaways.
One lucky customer received a $500 gift card as part of the celebration, Farrant said.
The retailer welcomed Easley Mayor Larry Bagwell, Greater Easley Chamber of Commerce President Cindy Hopkins as well as other Chamber members and community residents for a ribbon cutting ceremony in which the Belk team presented a $1,000 donation to the Friends of Pickens County Guardian ad Litem.
According to the program’s website, Friends of PCGAL is a local non-profit that incorporated in 2002 to assist the volunteers of the Guardian ad Litem program.
“We’re not the Guardians ad Litem and we’re not DSS (Department of Social Services.) We’re friends of the guardians,” said Board Chair Tammy Aiken Clark in a previous interview. “Our objective is to help the Guardian program itself. They’re a state run program and they have a budget like any other state program. These people give their time, freely. We support them in any way we can.”
The program to support the GAL exists only because of charitable contributions, she said.
“We’re supporting Pickens County Guardians so we can serve their mission and remain a pillar in this community, like we have been for the last 45 years,” said Farrant.
Chris Farinella, vice president of Belk’s Greenville Region, presented the check to Clark.
“In a tough retail climate, it’s great for Belk to stay true to the company’s 129-year commitment by investing $40 million to grow these local communities,” said Farinella.
The donation is aptly timed as Friends of PCGAL is hosting one of their main fundraisers, Clusters for Kids, on Oct. 14 at Arran Farm in Easley.
Tickets for the event are available online at www.friendspcgal.org/oysterroast.