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Costco Warehouse set for Wednesday grand opening in Springfield

Published: Aug. 17, 2021 at 5:27 PM CDT|Updated: Aug. 17, 2021 at 5:36 PM CDT
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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) - It’s been years in the making and a long time coming but for the many fans of Costco who have always wanted the worldwide brand to find its way to the Ozarks, the moment has arrived.

On Wednesday, August 18 at 8 a.m. following a ribbon-cutting at 7:45, the Costco Warehouse just off Chestnut Expressway near U.S. 65 will be open for business.

Rhonda Bertelsen came to Costco on Tuesday to get a membership (that’s required to shop at the store) and her dog Harper was pulling on her leash and jumping in the air as the pair walked towards the doors.

“She’s excited for Costco to open! Look at her,” Bertelsen said of her pup’s rambunctiousness.

Actually Harper was probably just happy for a car ride, a short walk and a chance to smell new things. But Rhonda was truly glad to see a Costco coming to the Ozarks. The fifth largest retailer in the world has over 800 locations around the world, but none closer to Springfield than Kansas City and St. Louis.

Until now.

“We have been waiting years for Costco,” Bertelsen said. “I’m originally from the west coast (where there are over 130 Costco’s in California) and we’re familiar and in love with Costco and super excited about having it be a part of our community.”

Costco is a big-box membership-only retail store associated with buying-in-bulk. But the warehouse has over 4,000 different and varied items like electronics, furniture, designer handbags, flowers and plants, clothes, groceries.... well, just a wide-range of choices.

In fact as you walk-in you immediately see liquor, PS5 PlayStation games, kayaks, portable water docks and giant teddy bears.

“He definitely is a Costco favorite,” said Springfield Costco General Manager Angela Bauer as she cuddled up with four giant bears taller than she was. “Big ‘ol Poppa Bear. 93 inches high.”

Costco is also well-known for its large produce selection and its wall-to-wall line-up of food services that includes a bakery, meat and poultry sections plus a food court that features what Bauer refers to as “our world famous $1.50 hot dog.”

There’s health-related services consisting of optical care, a hearing aid center and a pharmacy.

And Costco also has its own travel agency, tire center, gas station and resources to help you buy a car.

“We work with local dealerships for our members and kind of pre-negotiate fair pricing with them,” Bauer explained.

Costco also has its own private brand, Kirkland, which includes all kinds of products.

“It ranges from liquor and wine to our car batteries and certain select items that we can make at either just as good a quality if not better than the national brand,” Bauer said.

Bauer also pointed out that the warehouse’s inventory changes based on the public’s input.

“Everything that we do here has either been a suggestion by one of our employees or a suggestion by one of our members,” she said. “It’s very much an evolving business.”

As for how well Costco is expecting to go over in Springfield?

“I think it’s gonna be huge,” Bertelsen said. “I think people are going to come from Lake of the Ozarks, from Joplin, from a lot of places because I personally have driven to St. Louis just to visit the Costco there.”

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