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ACWORTH, Ga. -- RaceTrac Petroleum threw open the doors today on a new prototype for all of its future convenience stores.
The new store, situated here at the corner of Cherokee Street and Lake Acworth Drive, measures 6,000 square feet, one-third larger than a typical store found in the company's portfolio, according to the Cherokee Tribune.
In addition to its size, this location differs in its offerings, including free wireless Internet, indoor and outdoor seating, expanded food and beverage offerings, a frozen yogurt bar and a walk-in beer cave. Its stone columns and stacked-stone accents also set it apart from the company's traditional c-stores and gas stations.
"It's really something you've never seen in a convenience store," said RaceTrac spokeswoman Sherri Scott, who compared it to a mini-grocery store. "The whole goal is to take you back to the idea of a neighborhood store vs. a traditional gas station."
RaceTrac selected Acworth to launch the new format based on the neighborhood's demographics, Scott told the news outlet. RaceTrac has one additional store in the city.
"We've made our bread and butter over the years by offering people great gas at a value, and that's never going to change," Scott said. "But our audience has told us they want more of a convenience to them. Value is more than just a price. They want to be able to get gas, but also be able to pick up dinner, lunch, a snack or their paper."
Acworth Mayor Tommy Allegood said this city of 21,000 is a great place for such a prototype. In 2011, about 50 businesses opened in Acworth, he added. "We've been a great test market because we do so well at everything we do. And now we've got literally the biggest RaceTrac ever built in America," Allegood said.
Construction on the store, which will employee at least 20 people, began in June. Its grand-opening event will be held 3 p.m. on Jan. 21. The festivities will include a grand prize of $2,500 in RaceTrac gift cards and other prizes such as free frozen yogurt and free coffee for a year.