Cowlitz Crossing convenience store opens

Designed to complement ilani, store features regional brands; gas station partners with Chevron, Safeway

RIDGEFIELD, Wash. (April 23, 2019) – Cowlitz Crossing, a new convenience store and gas station in Ridgefield, Washington, opened yesterday with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on the Cowlitz reservation. Located off Interstate 5 at Exit 16, Cowlitz Crossing is the latest development at ilani, the region’s premier gaming, dining, entertainment and meeting destination. Its launch comes on the second anniversary of ilani’s opening and represents advancement for the Cowlitz Indian Tribe as it will provide additional opportunity for the community’s economic growth and prosperity.

“We are so pleased to expand our business model and partnerships with our community with the unveiling of Cowlitz Crossing, as well as extend additional benefits to our Momentum card holders and team members at ilani,” said Kara Fox-LaRose, president and general manager of ilani, who co-hosted today’s ribbon-cutting ceremony with Phil Harju, vice chair of the Tribal Council. “The development is indicative of the Tribe’s commitment to the area, and the regional brand representation in the store is a tribute to our community.”

Local favorites featured for customers

Cowlitz Crossing, open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, extends benefits to ilani’s Momentum card holders including discounts and, most importantly, the property’s unique loyalty point system – the richest in the market – offering a transparent and easy-to-use dollar per point system redeemable for dining, shopping, and now gas and other items at Cowlitz Crossing.  The new facility is anchored by a 5,500-square-foot convenience store featuring a gourmet deli, snacks and beverages. Cowlitz Crossing offers fresh ground coffee from a Ridgefield-based company and locally made donuts from Longview, Washington.

The gourmet deli will offer fresh made sandwiches, using Boar’s Head all natural Simplicity line of meats and cheeses and breads from Franz Bakery of Portland, Oregon. Customers will find high quality seafood from She Nah Nam Seafood and wild caught smoked salmon from Salmon River Smokehouse.  Fresh local foods and snacks are also supplied by Core-Mark of Portland.  Authentic Southern fried chicken also will be available, courtesy of Alabama-based BirdShack. For thirst quenchers, guests can turn to Pepsi Spire machines for soft drinks or a F’real machine for smoothies and milkshakes.

For travelers seeking a memento of their journey to the Northwest and Cowlitz tribal lands, gift merchandise is available. Additionally, the space features a tobacco drive-thru window.

Upcoming free gas giveaway

To celebrate its opening, Cowlitz Crossing is planning a Gas for a Year Giveaway. From May 1 through June 30, any customer who fills up with 10 gallons or more can be entered to win free gas for a year by bringing their receipt into the convenience store.

Chevron is the fueling partner for Cowlitz Crossing distributed by GP Energy, and Safeway cardholders will be able to use their cards for gas rewards. The gas station features 24 fueling positions for passenger vehicles that offer regular, diesel and clear gasoline options and two dual diesel truck lanes at a separate fast-fueling station. DEF pump dispensing units, which reduce harmful engine emissions, have been installed at the fast-fueling islands for modern diesel engines. Unlike other stations in the area, the property offers ethanol-free or “clear” gasoline options for boaters and campers passing through.

“It is truly exciting to see three dynamic companies working so well together to bring this flagship location to life,” said Amy Brookshier, GP Energy’s vice president of wholesale and business development. “GP Energy and Andretti Petroleum look forward to furthering its relationship with the Cowlitz Indian Tribe and the ilani community.”

What’s Next

Fox-LaRose also announced that the ground-breaking of an ilani parking garage will be May 1. The facility will have six floors with speed ramps and 2,600 parking spaces. ilani will add a 750-space parking lot on an undeveloped area near Cowlitz Crossing to replace spaces that will be removed to make room for the new parking structure. This will not disrupt ilani’s operations and visitors will be able to enjoy all the amenities ilani has to offer during construction. The project is scheduled to be completed by fall 2020.

Located on a 156-acre site in La Center, Washington, ilani, developed by the Cowlitz Tribe and Salishan-Mohegan, a partnership that includes Mohegan Sun, one of the world’s foremost gaming and entertainment developers and operators, is the West Coast’s premier gaming, dining, entertainment and meeting destination. With nearly 400,000 total square feet, ilani includes 100,000 square feet of gaming space with 2,500 slots and 75 gaming tables; 15 different restaurants, bars and retail outlets; and a 2,500-seat meeting and entertainment venue hosting nationally recognized performances. For more information, visit and follow ilani on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.



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