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Krispy Kreme ready to light up 'Hot Now' sign in North Charleston

Krispy Kreme Ladson Road

Workers marked off parking spaces over the weekend on the fresh pavement around the new Krispy Kreme doughnut shop on Ladson Road in North Charleston. It will open Feb. 25. Warren L. Wise/Staff

The grand opening of one of the most-anticipated new diners in the Charleston region is almost here.

The Krispy Kreme doughnut shop at 3651 Ladson Road in North Charleston will officially launch at 5:30 a.m. Feb. 25. People may see activity in the restaurant before then, but it will be an invitation-only training event.

In addition to its signature doughnuts, the new shop beside Bojangles' chicken restaurant near Palmetto Commerce Parkway also will offer specialty coffee drinks, brewed coffee and a drive-thru window.

During opening week until March 3, more than 100 random customers will receive a Golden Ticket at checkout, with each winner receiving one free dozen of the restaurant's signature "Original Glazed" confections every month for a year.

Arriving nearly three years after it was first announced, the sweet treat's return to North Charleston comes after a 19-year absence.

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The Winston-Salem, N.C.-based chain once operated on Ashley Phosphate Road, a site that was displaced in 2001 by a road project. Another location could once be found on Rivers Avenue near the former Naval Hospital building.

The chain famous for its airy “Original Glazed” doughnut has had a retail presence in the region since 1951, when it opened at 531 Meeting St. on the peninsula. Several other locations came and went.

The region’s only other Krispy Kreme retail outlet is on Savannah Highway in West Ashley, which opened in 2001.

The new restaurant is still looking for workers for all positions and all shifts. Applications can be found at Wingate Hotel at 9280 University Blvd. in North Charleston.

Founded in 1937, Krispy Kreme operates retail shops in 33 countries and can be found in about 12,000 grocery, convenience and mass merchant stores in the U.S.

Reach Warren L. Wise at 843-937-5524. Follow him on Twitter @warrenlancewise.

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