Oct. 18, 1983:
Officials with the Lackawanna County Industrial Development Authority announced that a new store, Fay’s Drugs, was coming to the area of Scranton’s Keyser-Oak Shopping Center.
A drug store chain headquartered in Liverpool, New York, Fay’s Drugs said its new store would encompass 13,000 square feet along the 700 block of Oak Street near the shopping center. It was to employ 30 people, according to the company.
From that October announcement to June 1984, the drug store had either opened or was in the process of constructing four stores: one in the Luzerne Street Shopping Center in Scranton, one by Keyser-Oak, one on the 1400 block of Monroe Avenue in Dunmore and one at a mini-mall in Eynon.
In November 1985, Fay’s celebrated the opening of another two stores in Lackawanna County, at 609 S. Main St. in Old Forge and on Route 6 in Clarks Summit.
In August 1996, JCPenney Co. bought the Fay’s Drugs chain. Penney’s at this time also owned another such chain, Thrift Drug Store, and in December, it acquired the Eckerd drug store chain.
After the acquisitions, some of the Fay’s and Thrift stores were deemed to be too close to each other, so the company decided to close some of the stores. The remaining Fay’s and Thrift stores would then become part of the Eckerd brand.
One of the first Fay’s to close locally was the one at Keyser Avenue and Oak Street, which shuttered on Feb. 22, 1997. The shop in Clarks Summit and another in the Pittston Plaza also eventually closed.
In June 2007, Rite Aid Corp. bought Eckerd and another drug store chain, Brooks, for $4 billion. As with the previous purchases, some stores closed because of their close proximity to one another, and the surviving stores were changed to the Rite Aid brand.
Rite Aid actually had started in Scranton on Sept. 12, 1962, when Alex Grass opened Thrif-D Discount Center at 401 Lackawanna Ave. In 1968, the business went public under the new name Rite Aid.
Recently, Rite Aid opened its “store of the future” on Bochicchio Boulevard in Covington Twp. This store has been designed to be appealing to the eye while also serving the health needs of the customer.
Brian Fulton has been the librarian at The Times-Tribune for the past 15 years. On his blog, Historically Hip, he writes about the great concerts, plays/musicals and celebrity happenings that have taken place throughout NEPA. He is also the co-host of the local history podcast, Historically Hip. He competed and was crowned grand champion on an episode of NPR quiz show “Ask Me Another.” Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; 570-348-9140; or @TTPagesPast