EGG HARBOR TOWNSHIP — On the first day of a weeklong job fair, hundreds came out to apply for jobs and interview for posts at the store to open in the Hamilton Commons shopping center.

Nationwide arts and craft store Hobby Lobby is expected to open in early 2018 in the Hamilton Township center with full-time and part-time associate positions available.

An orderly line of applicants who had patiently been waiting for interviews snaked through the lobby and lounge area of the Homewood Suites. 

Jim O'Keefe, 48, of Egg Harbor Township, had been in line for about 20 minutes and would be one of the last interviews Monday. After filling out an application and taking a pre-interview math quiz, his hiring-event ticket indicated he was number 175.

"If I knew the line would be this long, I would have come earlier," said O'Keefe. But the first day saw a steady stream of potential employees from 9 a.m.

Friends Chelsea Brumaire, 18, Sartu Ali, 19, and Gabrielle Beck, 18, went to the job fair just before 2 p.m. Monday. The young women, ready for interviews, filled out applications but were asked to schedule their interviews later on this week.

"I know they sell a lot of home decor and craft things," said Brumaire. "I'm really interested in any type of sales or retail job."

Hobby Lobby, which will open in the space previous occupied by The Sports Authority, is hiring for several departments and positions including managers, cashiers, stockroom, bookkeepers and freight receivers.

Hobby Lobby previously said the new store would bring between 35 to 50 jobs to the area. 

The job fair will continue through the week until Saturday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 3008 English Creek Ave.

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