Target opened its doors Tuesday to the sound of the Walt Whitman band, an in-store drummer, a dancing dog mascot and the applause of employees, town and education representatives and newly minted customers.
Before the ribbon cutting, store manager Alan Yamaji credited several people and organizations who worked to get the store ready. He and others reiterated the company's commitment to the local community.
Among those he thanked were representatives of the South Huntington school district who provided space for a job fair needed for the hiring of more than 250 workers.
"I'm really very excited about the community," Yamaji said.
Among the dignitaries were Town Supervisor Frank Petrone, Town Clerk Jo-Ann Raia, Council members Susan Berland and Mark Cuthbertson, receiver of taxes Ester Bivona and Legis. Chad Lupinacci.
South Huntington school district superintendent Dr. David Bennardo, assistant superintendent Dr. Joseph Centamore, Whitman principal Kathleen Acker and assistant principal Colleen Grady also joined the festivities. Yamaji and others said the store will be working with district students to help them prepare themselves for job interviews and other practical work skills.
After cutting the ribbon, guests were invited to shop the store and later in the evening, other shoppers turned up.
The store includes a large grocery section, a Starbucks, pharmacy and Target Optical.