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Karina Ramirez: Best Buy adding area for Samsung products

The Best Buy store in Denton will be getting a new shop area in the next couple of months.

The Samsung Experience Shop will allow customers to purchase new mobile products from smartphones, tablets, laptops, cameras, accessories and other items.

On Thursday, Jeff Shelman, a spokesperson with Best Buy Co. said the Denton store at 1800 S. Loop 288, Suite 102 is among the first group of stores that will feature the new section.

“This area is currently under construction,” Shelman said. “We blocked off the area this week.”

In March, Best Buy opened two test locations, one in Lewisville and another in Fort Worth.

The Samsung Experience Shop will be installed in more than 1,400 Best Buy and Best Buy Mobile stores beginning this month. Most stores are expected to have the new shop in early May or in early June, Shelman said.

Shelman also said the new shop will allow customers the ability to purchase their products there instead of going to the Best Buy registers. The area will be staffed with Best Buy and Samsung employees, he said.

Shawn Score, head of U.S. retail for Best Buy, said in a news statement that adding the new shop is part of the company’s Renew Blue transformation strategy with the goal of working closely with vendor partners. The measure would help to innovate and drive value, while also updating the stores to focus on the Best Buy’s growing and profitable categories, he said.

Best Buy is headquartered in Minneapolis and is one of the world’s largest multi-channel consumer electronics retailer, with stores in the U.S., Canada, China, Europe and Mexico.


The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality is accepting applications for the Texas Emissions Reduction Plan (TERP) Rebate Grants program until 5 p.m. June 28 or until all funding is distributed.

The rebate program is limited to on-road and select non-road repower and replacement projects only, a press release said.

Grants funds can be used for replacing or upgrading older diesel vehicles or equipment.

Grant-funded vehicles and equipment must be operated at least 75 percent of their annual usage within eligible areas/counties and/or designated highways and roadways. In the North Texas area, the following counties qualify: Denton, Collin, Tarrant, Dallas, Rockwall, Kaufman, Ellis, Johnson, Hood, Wise and Parker.

The rebate application is shorter and the eligible reimbursement amounts are predetermined based on default usage rates (miles/hours), the release said.

The TERP program provides financial incentives to eligible individuals, businesses or local governments to reduce emissions from polluting vehicles and equipment, according to its website.

For more information, visit .


Officials with BBVA Compass Foundation announced earlier this week that it will donate $25,000 to the American Red Cross in response to the April 17 fertilizer plant explosion in West.

The donation will be provided to the West Independent School District for rebuilding efforts through the Legacy West Educational Foundation, a press release said.

BBVA Compass has set up two locations online to accept donations.

Individuals and businesses can donate at any BBVA Compass branch or online at . BBVA Compass employees can also make donations at .


The McNatt Community Support Group is selling raffle tickets to support local schools and youth organizations in Denton, Cooke, Montague and Wise counties.

This year’s prizes include a new car or truck from one of the McNatt dealerships — Honda, Toyota, Scion, Chevrolet, Buick or GMC with a manufacturer’s suggested retail price of less than $30,000.

Gene Cole, general sales manager of Jim McNatt Toyota, said owner Jim McNatt will cover tax, title and license on the vehicle.

The program has been active for the past six years and has contributed more than $1 million to Denton County schools, Cole said.

McNatt has already made a commitment to continue with the program in 2014, he said. The raffle tickets will be issued July 1, 2014, and ticket sales will continue until March 2015.

This year’s winner will be announced at 10 a.m. May 18 at Jim McNatt Toyota, 4100 S. Interstate 35E.


The Denton County Health Department was one of five organizations that will receive grants from Susan G. Komen North Texas during the 2013-14 cycle.

DCHD, the Asian Breast Health Outreach Project, Bridge Breast Network, Grayson County Health Department and Moncrief Cancer Institute were recognized at the Celebration of Hope on April 6. The organizations will receive a total of $700,000, according to a news release from Susan G. Komen North Texas.

Coming up

Air Force veteran Scott O’ Grady, a New York Times best-selling author, will be the keynote speaker at the annual Salvation Army Doing the Most Good Luncheon on Wednesday.

The event will start at 11:30 a.m. at the Mean Green Club Level of Apogee Stadium, 1251 S. Bonnie Brae St.

O’Grady is the author of Return with Honor, in which he shares his wartime survival story when his plane was shot down in Bosnia.

Cost to attend is $50.

For more information, contact Sandra Robinson at 940-387-3550 or the Salvation Army offices at 940-566-3800.

Genghis Grill will conduct a fundraiser for the Denton Freedom House from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. at the restaurant, 2416 Lillian Miller Parkway, Suite 100.

Twenty percent of the proceeds from that day will go directly to the organization. Customers need to mention they are a supporter of the Denton Freedom House in order to ensure credit to the nonprofit.

Denton Freedom House is a faith-based rehabilitation center for men who have recently been released from jail, are trying to overcome drug and alcohol addictions, or have been living on the streets.

For more information, visit .

Chuck Waldrop, with the Center for Government Contracting in Dallas, will be the featured speaker at the North Central Texas College Small Business Development Center monthly breakfast on May 14. Networking will begin at 7:15 a.m., with the meeting following at 7:30 a.m. at the Denton Chamber of Commerce, 414 Parkway St.

After the breakfast presentation, Waldrop will meet with small business owners on a one-on-one basis and provide specialized help. The session will be free. Interested attendees need to schedule the one-on-one advising session in advance by calling Pam Livingston at 940-380-1849 or by sending an e-mail to .

The Lake Cities Chamber of Commerce will conduct a mixer 7 to 10 p.m. May 23 at Big D Catamarans Pier 121, 1481 E. Hill Park Rd., in Lewisville.

Cost is $30 for members, $40 for non-members and $35 for members at the door.

For more information, contact Melissa Cox at 940-497-3097.

KARINA RAMÍREZ can be reached at 940-566-6878 and via Twitter at @KarinaFRamirez.