FLORENCE — The city is enjoying a double celebration involving new businesses this week, with the grand opening of Electronic Express and the announcement that Chicken Salad Chick will open a local franchise.

Chicken Salad Chick, the Auburn-based restaurant that started in the kitchen of Stacy Brown, will be on Florence Mall property.

"They're going to go on a mall site near the Olive Garden," Mayor Steve Holt said. "That's a nice addition for us. Everybody's excited about it."

Holt said the location likely will be in a new building that would be near JCPenney.

The company's website lists 126 Chicken Salad Chick locations, including 23 in Alabama.

A release from the city of Florence states the restaurant is slated to open in December.

Chicken Salad Chick has more than a dozen original chicken salad flavors, according to the release. It also features side salads, gourmet soups, sandwiches and desserts.

Electronic Express had a Black Friday feel to its 398 Cox Creek Parkway location Thursday as a line of customers waited for the doors to open at noon for the official grand opening.

While the store already has had a soft opening, Thursday's event featured sales and a throng of shoppers.

Some 30 minutes into the opening, Dwayne Chumley, a member of the company's board of directors, said he was impressed by the showing.

"Thursday at 12:30 and the place is packed," Chumley said. "We're thankful for the turnout. One of the best locations we've had is Florence. Ever since the soft opening, the customer traffic is second to none among locations."

The store's opening has helped fill a major electronics store void that was left when Best Buy closed at the same 30,000-square-foot location in February 2017 after deciding not to renew the store's lease.

Nashville, Tennessee-based Electronic Express was founded in 1983 and stocks more than 2,000 models, according to the company's website.

The company has 18 sites, including 15 locations. Along with Florence, the Alabama stores are in Huntsville and Decatur, the website states.

bernie.delinski@timesdaily.com or 256-740-5739. Twitter @TD_BDelinski


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