ROANOKE COUNTY, Va. (WFXR) – A new business in the Tanglewood area – American Chinese trailblazer Panda Express – is ready to cut the ribbon at its first location in the Roanoke Valley on Wednesday morning, as well as give away free items to some of the first people in line.

Starting at 10 am on Wednesday, March 30, community members are invited to the grand opening of the new Panda Express on Electric Road.

The first 88 guests will receive a free swag bag with various Panda Express merchandise, as well as a coupon for a Free Bowl.

“Our entire Panda team is grateful to serve the Roanoke community by providing new jobs and supporting local organizations through food donations and fundraising opportunities,” said Brian Soriano, Panda Express area coach of operations. “We hope to be a lasting part of the community and welcome all guests into our doors to try our American Chinese favorites.”

According to a spokesperson for the restaurant chain, the new Panda Express location will create multiple employment opportunities for Roanoke County residents, offering one of the highest starting wages in the restaurant industry and comprehensive benefits. A majority of Panda General Managers earn $ 100,000 annually.

Since 2021, Panda has hired over 40,000 new associates and continues to hire more. Associates will grow professionally, personally, and financially at Panda, as the company provides a wide range of training programs, as well as professional and personal development courses through the University of Panda. Panda is currently offering a starting wage of $ 15 per hour for all front of house hires, as well as $ 16 per hour for all new back of house hires. Those interested in a career with Panda Express can visit

For two years in a row, Panda Express has been ranked # 1 in health and safety protocols for the food & beverage industry by the global research firm Ipsos, outperforming industry competitors on COVID-19 signage, compliance with associates wearing protective gear and enforcing distancing measures. Panda continues to take extra precautions to ensure the health and safety of both guests and associates and have implemented multiple safety practices, including PPE for all associates as well as required face coverings for associates, tamper-free stickers for delivery, plexi-glass barriers at register areas, social distancing protocols and enhanced cleaning practices.

Statement released by Havas Formula on behalf of Panda Express

As a family-owned and operated company, Panda Express plans to give back to the Roanoke Valley community through neighborhood fundraisers, as well as support upcoming fundraisers with the YMCA.

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