The new Marriott TownPlace Suites hotel going up west of Karl's TV and Appliance at 402 S. Norwood St. looks nearly finished from the outside, but there is still plenty to do inside, Paul Darling, one of the owners, told me Wednesday.
Elevators are being installed and painters are completing the upper floors. Carpeting will be laid early next week, he said.
Construction is going well and is on schedule, Darling said, with a planned opening in early spring.
The three-story, 56-unit hotel will be a nice addition to Aberdeen, he said. It is an extended-stay hotel. Every room has a small kitchen, including a stove, refrigerator, microwave and sink.
There will be studio, one bedroom and two bedroom suites available. Even the studio option has a kitchen and a nice work area, Darling said.
The hotel's proximity to the new Sanford Aberdeen Medical Center and Lakewood Mall is a plus.
Darling is with Americal, which has developed many hotels. Americal has eight other properties, and at one time had 14. Darling said this is the first extended stay hotel he has worked on and he is excited about it coming to Aberdeen.
I stopped into Orange Leaf Frozen Yogurt on Thursday to check out the new place. It opened on Wednesday in the Lamont Building at 205 Sixth Ave. S.E. The shop has bright orange and white furniture and lime green walls. It is prettier than it sounds - cheery and fun.
Manager Kristine Hinman said the opening on Wednesday went very well. There was a steady stream of customers, with a few of them coming back twice in one day, she said.
When I was there, I saw about a dozen customers or so, all of whom were excited to give the self-serve frozen yogurt bar a try.
The nice thing is that customers can create a dish of frozen yogurt on the decadent or healthy side, depending on their tastes. The toppings range from fresh fruit and nuts to chocolate chips, sprinkles and candy.
The yogurt dispensers are clean, stainless steel with a bit of a high-tech look. The yogurt is made from fresh milk, which is delivered daily.
Orange Leaf is the first shot in the Aberdeen frozen yogurt wars. A Cherry Berry Frozen Yogurt Shop is coming to Aberdeen in February.
JCPenney has made bold moves this year, first by going to a "fair and square" pricing system and then with a nationwide Christmas button promotion. The store gives away buttons with a code on the back. Those who enter the code on the JCPenney website can win prizes.
Usually my eyes glaze over when I hear about giveaways, because the odds of winning are so small. Well, the odds of winning with the buttons is excellent. It is one-in-four. I know several people who have won. Usually it is a $10 gift certificate. Who doesn't want a free $10?
Now there are some big prizes, including appliances, jewelry and family vacations.
I talked to Curtis Clifton, the Aberdeen JCPenney manager, who said that the button promotion has been a big hit. When I spoke with him Thursday, he said 10 million button codes had been entered online and more than 3.5 million prizes have been won. Rumor has it that an Aberdeen customer has won one of the family vacations, but Clifton could not confirm that.
He said the button promotion has helped increase traffic and sales at the Aberdeen store. No purchase is necessary to receive two buttons, plus they are kind of cute.
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