By Jesse Wood
Aug. 14, 2014. Renovations to the ABC store in Boone should be complete in the next two weeks.
“We are about to get it wrapped up,” ABC Board Chairman Ronny Holste said on Thursday.
Construction began in November 2013 after Green Construction was awarded the $499,750 bid. In addition, $29,000 was set aside for paving of some of the parking lot and updated wiring, Holste told High Country Press last fall.
The renovations, which didn’t impede on customers purchasing their favorite spirit, have increased the warehouse storage by about 1,000 square feet, the sales area by about 500 feet and added about 15 parking spaces including a small lot in front of the building that faces Blowing Rock Road. The loading area is now on the west side of the store, so tractor trailers can easily pull into the building and unload without having to go in reverse to the former loading area.
The post-renovation store now has just under 7,000 square feet.
“We were getting cramped in the sales area and we also needed more storage,” Holste said, because the lack of storage was “really binding us in the busy months” to provide product to the customers.
As for the benefits to customers, Holste said its much easier to navigate through the store and parking lot. Plus, customers will see many more lines of vodkas, bourbon and the like.
“We have more variety and more choice for the customers to choose from,” Holste said. “We also added a lot of higher end, upscale liquors that we didn’t carry before but carry now.”
Another neat thing about the “new” liquor store is the N.C. Specialties section that features dozens of spirits distilled in the Tar Heel State such as TOPO organic vodka and Howling Moon Distillery Apple Pie Moonshine.
“We have the moonshine, bourbons, gins and rums from distilleries in North Carolina. There are several and up-and-coming about every week with a new one popping up. We have one as close as Lenoir and Madison. They are getting to be all over. They seem to be. I don’t know if they are a novelty right off the top. They claim to have a good product and stuff,” Holste said. “They sell pretty well.”
Holste mentioned its possible a grand re-opening will take place but said that will be discussed at the next ABC board meeting at the end of month.
The Boone ABC store opened in 1986, and in 2013, it contributed about $500,000 to the community’s law enforcement, education and prevention of underage drinking and abusive behavior.
The store is located at 2067 Blowing Rock Road and can be reached at 828-262-3616. It’s open 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Friday and Saturday.