ABINGDON, Va. (WJHL) — Food City officials on Thursday announced that the grocery company will launch its line of Curt’s Ace Hardware stores in the summer.

The chain continues to evaluate locations in Abingdon, Bristol, Piney Flats, Erwin and Elizabethton in addition to its recently purchased Mize Farm & Garden Supply Co. in Gray.

“We look forward to bringing Curt’s Ace Hardware store locations to the communities where we know there is a need,” said Steven C. Smith, Food City president and CEO in a release. “Given our vast merchandising and marketing experience, I’m confident that our team will do an excellent job managing and operating these locations.

Ace Hardware offers a wide array of paints, power tools, equipment, lawn and garden products, home improvement supplies and other products.

Photo: Steve Smith announces the partnership between Food City and Ace Hardware Stores (Food City)

“We greatly appreciate the support that our loyal customers have shown us, and we want to leverage our Curt’s Ace Hardware brand to better save the communities where we already do business,” Smith said.

The name Curt’s Ace Hardware comes from Smith’s grandfather.

“He was a general mercantile store operator, he sold everything from hardware and horseshoes at the time, he had the Post Office in his store, and we’ve done this kind of to honor his memory and his legend of being in the hardware business,” Smith said of his grandfather.

Representatives from Ace said they are excited about the potential of the partnership.

“You ain’t gotta go through a big box retailer, you ain’t gotta go 100 yards to get a bolt,” said Ace store manage Kyle Geffers. “You can walk in, you’re in an 8,000 square foot building, you walk in, you just get the bolt that you need and you can leave.”

Food City’s parent company, K-VA-T Food Stores, promised up to 200 jobs will be created through the partnership.