See Ya at (the newly opened) IKEA


Story by: Christine Betts

The IKEA opening in Merriam, Kan. drew hordes of people, from the meatball fanatics to those redecorating their bedrooms.

The store, based originally in Sweden, has opened its first store in the Kansas City area. The drive to Merriam takes around 30 minutes for any Lee’s Summit IKEA fans.

Wed. Sept 9 was the grand opening for the furniture and lifestyle retailer. People camped outside up to two nights prior, though, in hopes of being one of the first 40 customers, who would receive a free couch. The next 100 earned themselves a free chair.

On Thurs., early-to-rise customers will receive a free mattress and the first 40 to line up on Fri. get a year supply of free meatballs.

On its opening day, and for the next three or so months, the store utilized shuttles to carry customers between a nearby abandoned K-Mart parking lot and the IKEA entrance.

Beyond reasonably priced furniture, guests can find a plethora of home goods and tools, light fixtures, textiles, and Swedish food.

The opening should draw tourism to the area (the location is placed conveniently next to an interstate), add new jobs, and funnel more money into the economy. That being said, it’s hard to miss the big blue, blockish building on the side of the road.