By News-Register staff • 

Along the Street: Bi-Mart closing pharmacies; accounts go to Walgreens

Yamhill County residents who usually fill prescriptions at Bi-Mart will need to go to Walgreens, instead.

The two companies have reached an agreement that Bi-Mart’s pharmacy, patient files and inventory will move to Walgreens by January 2022. Patients whose prescriptions are being transferred will be notified by mail, Bi-Mart officials said.

Bi-Mart will close its 56 remaining pharmacies in stores across Oregon, Washington and Idaho, and use the space to expand its retail offerings.

Bi-Mart opened its McMinnville location at 1635 S.W. Baker St. in the mid-1970s. The store carries electronics, garden supplies, hardware, paint, auto products, guns and ammunition, sporting goods, pet food, home goods and food.

Walgreens opened at 603 S.E. Baker St. in McMinnville in November 2002. The store offers a full-service pharmacy with a drive-up window along with other health care products, food, candy, paper products, personal care items and a photo counter.

Prior to last week’s announcement, Bi-Mart already had closed several pharmacies in the Portland area and transferred that business to Walgreens stores.

Bi-Mart’s president and CEO, Rich Truett, said closing pharmacies was a difficult but necessary decision. It is “strategically important as we move to strengthen our solid financial position and expand our plans for future growth,” he said.

He said the company, which started in Yakima, Wash., in 1955, is “healthy and strong” overall. It has 80 stores in the Northwest, all of which offer discounts to shoppers who show their membership cards to enter.

Rob Ewing, Walgreens regional vice president, said his company will provide employment opportunities to former Bi-Mart pharmacy workers, as well as services to customers.

Walgreens also has stores in Newberg and many other cities in Oregon. All told, the company has more than 9,000 stores in the mainland U.S., Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Downtown awards

First Federal’s new headquarters was named “Outstanding New Building” at the Oregon Main Street Association conference Thursday. The McMinnville Downtown Association also received an award for its Dine Out(side) program, which started in the summer of 2020 as a way for restaurants to serve customers during the pandemic and continued this year.

For full details about the awards, see Tuesday’s edition of the News-Register.

Last farmers market

The final McMinnville Farmers Market of the year will be on Thursday, Oct. 14.

The market, featuring fresh produce, prepared food and other items, is open from noon to 6 p.m. at Cowls and First streets.

Hosted by the McMinnville Downtown Association, the farmers market will return in May 2022.

Christmas coming

It’s already beginning to look a lot like Christmas at Third Street businesses, that are taking part in the McMinnville Downtown Association promotion called ‘Twere the Weeks Before Christmas.

Shoppers can earn one scratch-off ticket for every $25 they spend. The tickets are printed with a variety of prizes, from discounts to free items, with a grand prize of a $500 MacBucks gift card.

For more information, contact the MDA at or individual downtown businesses.

Chamber awards

The McMinnville Area Chamber of Commerce will hold its annual dinner and awards presentation Thursday, Nov. 4, in the McMinnville Community Center.
The “Mask-erade”-themed event will run from 6 to 9 p.m. It will include the annual membership meeting and awards, such as business leader of the year, beautification, and small and large businesses of the year.

Cost is $65 per person.

Registration can be completed via the Chamber website, at

British booth

A bright red, London-style phone booth has popped up in downtown Carlton, on the lot where the old meat packing plant was torn down this summer.
Property owner Frank Foti told city officials he wanted to send “a positive vibe out to the community.”

The red booth says “Carlton” on the side. It sits outside of the split-rail fence that now defines the corner lot.

Foti also owns the property across West Main Street, another corner of the Main and Yamhill streets intersection, and a downtown building as well.

Chamber Greeters

Gills Point S Tire & Auto Service, 3100 N.E. Highway 99W, will host the Greeters program Friday, Oct. 15.

Admission is $1. For more information, go to the ChamberMcMinnville Area Chamber of Commerce website,

The Chehalem Valley Chamber of Commerce also will have a Greeters program from 8 to 9 a.m. Friday, Oct. 15. For more information, go to

Bakery hours

The Carlton Bakery now is closed on Tuesdays as well as Mondays.

The bakery at West Main and Kutch streets is open from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday. It offers baguettes, other breads and French pastries, such as croissants and macarons, along with lunch and breakfast.

Scholarship winners

Yamhill County Farm Bureau has awarded $2,000 scholarships to three students who graduated from local high schools.

JD Stables Jr., the son of Carla and John Stables, is an Amity High School graduate. A junior at Oregon State University, he is majoring in rangeland science.

He has been involved in 4-H and FFA for many years. He earned the American FFA Degree 2021. He placed second in the Oregon State Envirothon.

He would like to be involved in rangeland extension, possibly as an Extension agent, or in agricultural education.

Hanna VanDeWalle, daughter of Kimberly and David VanDeWalle, is a Yamhill-Carlton HIgh School graduate. She is on the dean’s list at OSU, where she is studying agricultural science.

She has been active for many years in FFA, including as Y-C FFA Chapter president. Her honors include winning a state FFA degree and a state FFA Landscape Management Proficiency award.

VanDeWalle, who has done an internship with Oregon Agriculture in the Classroom, wants to become an ag teacher.

Joshua Flores, son of Sergio and Brenda Flores, graduated from McMinnville High School. He is a junior at OSU majoring in soil science/sustainable agriculture, and also is on the dean’s list.

An Eagle scout, Flores is a member of the Organic Growers’ Club and is doing an internship with the Natural Resources Conservation Service. He plans a career helping landowners improve the care of their resources.

Send business news to Starla Pointer at



I had given serious consideration to transferring my pharmacy account to the Walgreens in Newberg, but have hesitated because the line is always so long and now it is undoubtedly going to get longer...

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