Sheetz to open in Ripley

RIPLEY – A convenience store and gasoline station chain known for making fresh specialty sandwiches is coming to Ripley with the possibility of eventually making it to the Parkersburg area.

Officials with Sheetz this week confirmed the Ripley store.

“We just signed the agreement last week,” said David Hazelet, Sheetz real estate manager.

Hazelet declined to say where the business would be located, because there is a business in operation at the site and he did not know if the owner had made the announcement to his employees.

“It will be in a high-traffic area in Ripley,” he said.

Ripley Mayor Carolyn Rader said the business will be on West Main Street at the site of the McCoy Inn and Conference Center. Rader said she recently talked with owner John Paul McCoy about the change.

“This is definitely going to happen,” she said.

McCoy was ready to make a change in his life after 40 years with the motel, which Rader described as a local “icon.”

“I am going to hate to see that building go,” she said. “I am excited for Mr. McCoy for him to be able to start this new chapter in his life. This is a wonderful opportunity in his life. Mr. McCoy has been a pillar in our city.”

Rader said it is always a good thing to welcome a new business to the area.

“This will be a perfect location for Sheetz,” she said. “I am sure they have done their homework on the city government and what kind of people are here. I hope they feel positive about coming here.”

Sheetz is based in Altoona, Pa., with more than 437 locations in Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, Ohio and North Carolina. Sheetz operates more than 40 stores in West Virginia, including Morgantown, Charleston, Huntington, Beckley, Bridgeport, Hurricane, Summersville and Martinsburg. There are three locations around Beckley with a fourth under contract.

Sheetz is open around the clock and offers fresh food items like Sheetz’ signature Made To Order items that include Angus beef burgers, premium grilled chicken sandwiches, sub sandwiches, freshly made salads, french fries and onion rings.

Sheetz locations have featured their MTGo! and Shweetz Bakery lines of sandwiches, wraps, doughnuts and muffins, along with Sheetz Bros. Coffeez, a full-service espresso and smoothie bar staffed by a trained barista where customers can order handmade specialty coffee drinks, including lattes, cappuccinos and mochas-hot, frozen or iced.

What will be offered at the Ripley location has not been released.

Hazelet said the company is continuing to expand outward with additional sites being considered in West Virginia with an eye on eventually having a location in the Parkersburg area.

“After Ripley, (Parkersburg) would be the next logical geographic area we would look at,” he said. “However, as of now, we have not spent any time in Parkersburg.”

The Charleston Daily Mail this week reported South Charleston City Council has given preliminary approval to re-zone property for a Sheetz gasoline station and convenience store on MacCorkle Avenue in Spring Hill. The store will take up an entire block.

As for Ripley, Hazelet said work is expected to begin on the site next spring. The opening is expected to occur in late 2014 or early 2015.

new businesses create new opportunities, Rader said.

“In the end, all of this is going to be positive for the city,” she said. “We will certainly welcome this new business to our area.”