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C&K Market, Inc. is providing hotspots at all 38 of its stores, including Ray's Food Place in Prineville

JASON CHANEY - Students who are engaged in new distance learning efforts can go to the parking lot for free internet service.

Those seeking a Wi-fi hotspot for online school will now have one more local option.

Ray's Food Place is now providing free Wi-fi that people can connect to from the store's parking lot free of charge. The addition comes courtesy of a decision by C&K Market, Inc., which operates the local store and 37 others throughout Oregon and Northern California, to provide students Wi-fi access.

The company said that Information Technology Director Eric Armstrong put together a dedicated network for students after realizing some of them might lack Wi-fi access.

"What a great idea, and it will mean so much to families without Internet access," said Karl Wissmann, president and CEO of C&K Market, Inc.

He added that the stores will also be able to distribute printed materials that school districts want to get in the hands of families.

"We do this for back-to-school shopping lists and are glad to offer this service to students and their families," he said.

Local store manager Walt Blind said he and his staff want to make Wi-fi access available to as many students and others who need it as possible.

"With all the homeschooling that is starting right now, (we want) people to have access to Wi-fi," he remarked.

People wanting to use the Wi-fi connection are invited to come to the Ray's Food Place parking lot. The connection will be listed under C&K Market and the password is "ckschool" — all letters are lower case.


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