Jan 112018

If your membership renewal to Sam’s Club is due, don’t bother. That’s the word from longtime customer Catherine Bouchard whose niece works there and found a note on the door this morning.

The popular members-only warehouse store, Sam’s Club, at 2 Boston Post Road was eerily still when employees and customers arrived today. The store had closed its doors without any notice and, it seems the only way to get an explanation is through Walmart Headquarters.

A paper sign on the doors read that the store was closed, but will reopen on Friday at 10 a.m. Yet, the store will be permanently closed on Jan. 26, this also is true for other locations nationwide, including the one in Manchester, CT.

This happened just as the company announced it was raising its starting salary to $11 an hour and handing out one-time cash bonuses. — fantastic news, if you have a store to call home. More than 150 stunned employees will be out of work in Orange.

Orange First Selectman Jim Zeoli said he received the WARN Notice notice sent to the state Department of Labor that 155 employees at the Orange location will be impacted by the closure. While the club will close to the public Jan. 26, hourly employees will be terminated March 16 and management employees will be terminated April 13, the notice said.

On his Facebook page, Zeoli wrote, “Yes Orange it’s true! I received notice from the Labor Dept that Sam’s Club is closing on Jan 26th. I have heard from many that are unhappy about this! The Big Box stores that were the demise of many small stores years ago are now feeling their own demise by online shopping. I was told they are closing stores across the country. I had heard a few weeks ago that Walmarts biggest fear was Amazon.”

One customer said she’s devastated with the news because Sam’s Club is her go-to store. “They asked me to renew my membership last night, and I said ‘no’ it’s not due til February. Good thing!”

If you did recently renew your membership, call their main office at 1-888-746-7726 and ask to have your membership refunded. One resident said she did and they said they will refund it within 6 weeks. “They were very nice about it on the phone,” she said.

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