Formed by M.C. Peterson as an outgrowth of Kingsport, Tennessee-based Bower's stores, the Sky City Discount Centers chain was inaugurated in Asheville, North Carolina in 1962. The name of the discount division was a play on the nickname of Asheville; "The Land of the Sky".

Standard stores were in the 28,000 to 51,000 square foot range and housed over forty departments...including sections dedicated to home appliances, jewelry, millinery, ladies' wear, girl's and children's wear, shoes, domestics, health & beauty aids, men's & boy's wear, infants, artificial flowers, cameras, sporting goods, hardware and magazines. Several early stores also featured a luncheonette and pharmacy.

The chain was acquired by St. Louis-based Interco, Incorporated in November 1976. At the height of operations in 1983 there were seventy-two Sky City Discount Center locations

By the late 1980s, the encroachment of Wal-Mart stores into the Sky City market was beginning to diminish the chain's profitability. Fifty-five stores were shuttered in 1990. The Interco parent company declared bankruptcy in January 1991, with the assets of its Sky City division being sold to a consortium of private investors. Stores still in business by this time went dark in early 1992.