H-E-B opens doors to Willis community


photo or infographic by Ken Labonski

OPEN, OPEN. Members of the drumline welcome customers at the new HEB in Willis.

HERE EVERYTHING’S BETTER. Members of the band, cheerleaders and Sweethearts take a group shot among the brand new check out lines. The new HEB brought many jobs to the area, and the store has already proved to be a strong supporter of the school district. (photo or infographic by Ken Labonski)

Sweethearts and cheerleaders shaking their poms. Drummers setting the tone with their cadence. People lined up on the sidewalk, ready for the doors to open. It was early and still dark outside, but the energy was electric as the doors opened to customers for the first time.

H-E-B’s grand opening came action packed as  members of the band, cheerleaders and Sweethearts arrived at 5:30 A.M on Nov. 2.

“Going into H-E-B everyone was really friendly, and I loved how the whole community was there to support the new opening of the store,” senior Jayci Shaw said. “And all the employees were really appreciative of us being there and it was just overall a really great experience.” 

The whole Willis community celebrated the new opening. The night before the opening day, a ribbon cutting ceremony was held at the story.

Willis ISD was given a donation of $5,000 dollars to the WISD Education Foundation department. The money will be go into the foundation’s coffers so teachers can be granted grants.

“It was SO exciting,” Willis ISD Community Involvement Liaison Michelle Bischof said. “HEB has been a community partner with our Foundation since the 2020-2021 school year.  They provide our staff with Teacher Treat Tuesday each week, we won the HEB Excellence in Education stop in 2021, and they are a partner to our school district.  We will use the donation for Innovative Teaching Grants which means we will be able to give more money back to our classrooms.”

PEP RALLY VIBES. Opening the new HEB with some noise junior James Bagwell and sophomore Tyson McDowell lead the drum line into the store. With members of the band, cheerleaders and Sweethearts, the early morning opening had a pep rally atmosphere. (photo or infographic by courtesy of Montgomery County Lifestyles)

A donation of $2,500 dollars to chef Sandra Jefferson and the Culinary Arts Department.  Donations were also made to the Wildkat Resource Center and to Roark Elementary.

H-E-B have given Willis a new look. The new story will also bring jobs to the area.

“It was my first day on the job and it was so thrilling with everyone smiling as they walk through the aisle,” senior Hector Torres said. “It really made my day seeing the whole town of Willis come together.”