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Big day for Dallas County: Chamber hosts three ribbon cuttings Friday

Friday was a “big day for Dallas County” said Selma-Dallas County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Sheryl Smedley.

The Chamber hosted three ribbon cuttings across town including the newly constructed Long Lewis Ford facility, Merida’s Restaurant & Catering and Renarda White Consulting and Premier Tax Consultants.

After a lack of new businesses opening their doors since the COVID-19 pandemic began in March, Smedly said that the three ribbon cuttings held Friday are a reminder that Dallas County is open for business.

“This is a sign that everyone is proceeding with caution,” said Smedley. “We are happy to have all of this new business in Dallas County and are thankful for their investment in the community.

The newly remodeled Long Lewis Ford dealership was the first ribbon cutting to take place Friday.

Long-Lewis of Selma Dealer and General Manager Christopher Ouellette said the renovations took about a year to complete and represents an $800,000 investment from the company.

“It’s great to see everything completed,” he said. ‘We’ve all been cramped up in the same building for a while but now we’ve got room to spread out. That’s especially great because we’ve hired some new salesmen recently.”

Ouellette said that Long Lewis’ new renovations will allow the dealership to better meet the needs of the community.

“I think this is a sign that we aren’t going anywhere,” he said. “Our doors are open and we’re here to stay.”

A little later, Merida’s Restaurant & Catering, located at 1809 W. Highland Ave., celebrated its grand opening at noon.

The restaurant features a fresh menu of salads and sandwiches.

Dallas County Probate Judge Jimmy Nunn paid a visit to the new establishment and wished business owner Tawan Merida luck in running her third restaurant.

“I’m sure you will do well because we love to eat here in Dallas County,” said Nunn. “We have enough greasy food restaurants here in Dallas County. It is nice to have some healthy food that will do the body good.”

The final ribbon cutting to take place Friday was for Renarda White Consulting and Premier Tax Consultants, located at 912 Highland Ave.

Several local officials, including Nunn, and Selma City Councilpersons Clay Carmichael, Lesia James and Jannie Thomas.

Former Selma City Councilwoman Angela Benjamin was also there to support the new business, encouraging everyone to take advantage of White financial expertise.

“She’s open just in time for tax season,” said Benjamin. “Come by and support a local business.”