Pops Turns One

Soda, gas, food, c-store combo celebrates first birthday

ARCADIA, Okla. -- The Pops 66 soda emporium, gas station, restaurant and convenience store on Route 66 in Arcadia, Okla., celebrated its first anniversary yesterday. Store management said approximately 900,000 customers have visited the store since it opened.

Chesapeake Energy Corp. chairman and CEO Aubrey McClendon opened POPS 66, a combination gas station/convenience store/soda emporium and restaurant, last August. It is unaffiliated with Oklahoma City-based Chesapeake.

The station offers hundreds of soda brands—including Pops 66's own Round Barn Root Beer—with sampling. [image-nocss] The gas station has 12 fuel dispensers, offering unbranded gasoline and diesel supplied by Star Fuels of Oklahoma LLC. The store offers typical convenience fare as well as Route 66 and selected local "made-in-Oklahoma" merchandise. The full-service restaurant frequently attracts 1,000 diners per day, said the company.

And one of the most prominent features of Pops 66 is the 66-ft. pop bottle, a steel sculpture lit with “Times Square-quality” LED luminosity.

"The success of this store has far exceeded our expectations, so we are having a party to show our appreciation to the customers," Pops 66 Marketing Manager Jessica Ockershauser told The Oklahoman.

Store General Manager Marty Doepke said Pops 66 has attracted many soda pop and Route 66 enthusiasts from across the country. "A lot of people who take family trips, they make this one of their stops," he told the newspaper. "Also, people who travel along Route 66 often make this their destination."

The city of Arcadia has enjoyed its own pop since the new business has opened, said the report. During the past year, the city's sales tax revenue increased by nearly 32% from $12,829 from July 2006 to July 2007 to $16,890 for the same period this past year, according to figures from the Oklahoma Tax Commission cited by the paper.

Click hereto view the December 2007 CSP magazine report on Pops 66.

Pops 66 was also the recipient of theMost Innovative Store Concept 2008 Convenience Retailing Award from CSP magazine.