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VOL. 133 | NO. 178 | Friday, September 7, 2018

Daily Digest

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New Aldi Grocery Store Planned for Berclair Area

Dirt work has started in preparation for construction of a new Aldi discount grocery at 4720 Summer Ave., where an Admiral Benbow Inn once stood before being demolished.

Aldi already has a presence in the same Berclair neighborhood. An Aldi operates a half-mile west, at 4508 Summer, inside a shopping center. That existing store eventually will close, company officials told The Memphis Daily News.

Aldi Inc. Tennessee purchased the five acres at 4720 Summer in July for $1.53 million, public records show.

“We’re currently in the early phases of working with the Town of Memphis on plans for a future store slated to open in 2019,’’ Troy Marshall, Aldi Mount Juliet Division vice president, wrote in an email.

“… Since this store will replace the Memphis location at 4508 Summer Ave., we’re pleased to share that all of our employees will be transferring to nearby Aldi stores and there will be no job losses with this store closing,” he said.

The company is spending $1.9 billion to remodel and expand more than 1,300 Aldi stores in the United States by the end of 2020.

“We’re evolving to meet (shoppers’) changing tastes and needs, and in return they have made us one of the fastest-growing retailers in the U.S.,’’ Marshall said.

A typical Aldi is 12,000 square feet, which Aldi officials said is easier for shoppers than a big-box space. “Our layout is simple,’’ Marshall said. “We only have four or five aisles and every Aldi has a similar layout, so you’ll always feel like you’re shopping at your local Aldi store.’’

The new stores have open ceilings, natural light and additional storage for fresh produce, dairy and meat products.

- Special to The Daily News

Hollywood Feed Acquires Atlanta Pet Store Chain

Memphis-based Hollywood Feed expanded to more than 80 stores in 11 states with the recent purchase of Rucker Pet’s four Atlanta-area stores.

The transaction gives Hollywood Feed 16 stores in greater Atlanta in less than two years, with eight new stores under development.

It continues a growth curve fueled by new store openings and acquisitions of local brands including All About Pets, Hollywood Petstar, Premium Pets, Bark ‘n Purr and Pawtique.

“The recent trend of regional brands consolidating made the timing right for this latest acquisition,” said Shawn McGhee, Hollywood Feed president. “A key component to our growth is strategic acquisition of like-minded brands in pet-friendly markets – and Atlanta tops that list.”

All Rucker Pet employees will be offered jobs with Hollywood Feed.

Rucker drew Hollywood Feed’s attention because “they are the premier family-owned pet retailer in the region,” McGhee said. “Once we got to know them, we realized how much we are aligned in terms of philosophy, work ethic, support of local rescues, and a dedication to quality, holistic offerings.”

- Special to The Daily News

U of M Explores Medical School at Lambuth Campus

The University of Memphis is exploring the feasibility of adding a doctor of osteopathic medicine school to its Lambuth campus. Students who earn a doctor of osteopathic medicine degree are fully licensed physicians who focus on primary care and wellness.

U of M president M. David Rudd said the school would be a natural fit for Jackson, where there is a significant need for rural health care.

At its Wednesday, Aug. 5 meeting, the U of M board of trustees approved a streamlined four-tier tuition structure and discussed potential investments in the University Opportunity Zone. Most of the U of M’s main campus lies within an Opportunity Zone, a federally designated area where private investors are eligible to receive certain tax benefits on funds reinvested in the community. The program is designed to encourage long-term investment in rural and low-to-moderate income urban communities.

The next board of trustees meeting will be Dec. 5 at U of M’s Lambuth campus in Jackson.

- Special to The Daily News

Boots Riley to Keynote Indie Film Festival Forum

Oakland rapper and filmmaker Boots Riley will deliver a keynote address at a forum during this year’s Indie Memphis Film Festival.

The festival, which is in its 21st year, will be held Nov. 1-5.

Riley, the director of the 2018 surrealistic social satire, “Sorry to Bother You,” will keynote the Black Creators Forum to talk about his background as a musician, labor organizer and filmmaker. He will also present a classic film of his choice during the festival.

During the festival, filmmaker Zia Anger will present a special live film presentation titled “My First Film.” Anger will offer live commentary on previously unseen work, via split screen and text edit. She will recount the stories behind her lost work and her struggles in the industry.

"I have attended dozens or maybe hundreds of talks about the lack of women feature film directors, an issue I care deeply about,” Indie Memphis Film Festival senior programmer Miriam Bale said in a release. “But after a while, they all sound the same. Zia Anger has figured out a new way to discuss these issues, in an incredibly moving, personal, and creative way. I've never seen anything like it!"

After developing “My First Film” at the Spectacle Theater in Brooklyn, New York, Indie Memphis will be the festival debut of this traveling live cinema event.

The Black Creators Forum will conclude with a free public celebration, the Black Filmmakers Pitch Rally (with crowdfunding partner Seed&Spark) on Friday, Nov. 2, at Playhouse on the Square. It will feature a jury-selected $10,000 “bounty prize” provided by Epicenter Memphis for projects to garner support for production in Memphis. Production must begin in Memphis before Aug. 1, 2019, to claim the bounty cash.

Half of the pitching filmmakers have been selected from the list of finalists in the Indie Memphis Black Filmmaker Residency for Screenwriting program. The remaining six slots are available for feature films, both narrative and documentary, proposing to shoot in Memphis.

Applications to pitch are open through Sept. 16.

A limited number of Black Creators Forum passes are now on sale, which also include full access to all Indie Memphis Film Festival events. The cost for the Black Creators Forum is $149 for a pass, $299 for a VIP pass.

Twenty fellowships for free passes are also available.

The full Indie Memphis Film Festival schedule, featuring more than 200 films, will be announced on Sept. 25.

- Special to the Daily News

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