Stew Leonard Jr., the CEO of Stew Leonard's, is joined...

Stew Leonard Jr., the CEO of Stew Leonard's, is joined by family, store team members and company mascot Wow the Cow during groundbreaking ceremonies Wednesday, April 22, 2015, in Farmingdale. Credit: Newsday / Alejandra Villa

Stew Leonard's first Long Island location took one step closer to reality Wednesday.

The farm fresh food grocer, nicknamed the "Disneyland of Dairy Stores" because of its country-fair atmosphere featuring costumed characters and animated entertainment, held a groundbreaking and tree planting on the site of its new store in Farmingdale. The event was to feature a special appearance by Wow the Cow, the store's costumed character mascot.

In honor of Earth Day, the Leonard family also planned to plant an evergreen tree on-site. The new store will be located in Kimco Realty Corp.'s Airport Plaza shopping center. It is scheduled to open in early 2016.

The 60,000-square-foot store, the family-owned company's fifth, will provide up to 400 jobs. The location was vacated by restaurant and entertainment business Dave & Buster's earlier this year.

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