Walmart renovations blessed

  • Dennis Fujimoto / The Garden Island

    Mark Perriello of the Kauai Chamber of Commerce, left, and state Rep. James Tokioka are among the guests Friday who tour the renovated Walmart store in Lihue.

  • Dennis Fujimoto / The Garden Island

    Diane Keeler, Walmart Lihue store manager, and Lance McAlister, the Hawaii Walmart marketing manager, undo the maile lei Friday, marking the re-opening of the 24-year-old store after substantial renovations.

  • Dennis Fujimoto / The Garden Island

    Kahu Kauilani Kahalekai blesses the 24-year-old Walmart store’s renovations Friday with Lance McAlister, the Hawaii Walmart marketing manager, left, and Diane Keeler, Walmart Lihue manager, center.

LIHUE — Mark Perriello, Kauai Chamber of Commerce president, said Walmart Lihue is more than a very important store. It is a builder of communities.

Perriello was among the guests enjoying the Friday-morning blessing of remodeling work that has been going on for several months at the 24-year-old store. Improvements were made in several departments.

“This is so much more than a store,” Perriello said. “This is a place for the community, and Walmart builds a strong sense of community.”

Kahu Kauilani Kahalekai continued the spirit by marking this as a new start for not just the renovations, but for its ohana, starting with store manager Diane Keeler.

“We’re always looking for ways to make shopping easier,” Keeler said.

Lance McAlister, the Hawaii Walmart marketing manager, said the Walmart Lihue store boasts more than just physical improvements.

“We are more than 300 associates,” McAlister said. “These associates have put in more than 1,000 hours, and the store has contributed for than $1,600 in aid following times of disaster. We are a part of the community, and as we celebrate our 25th anniversary next year, this is a great milestone for us. We plan to be here for another 25 years and beyond.”

Guests to the re-opening celebration were treated to special performances from the store’s associates, a special meet-and-greet performance by local musician Anuhea, and an appearance and tour by costumed character Stitch from “Lilo and Stitch.”

Food and product sample stations sprouted throughout the day for the occasion.


Dennis Fujimoto, staff writer and photographer, can be reached at 245-0453 or

  1. billyjoebob November 16, 2019 12:11 pm Reply

    Yikes! The blessing of a temple of cheap plastic crap. Sad.

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