A soon-to-open Cabela’s store in Rogers, Ark., will test the viability of a large format store in a small market.
The opening of the 100,000-sq.-ft. Cabela’s store is slated for Thursday, August 30 and was strategically timed to kick off the Labor Day weekend. A ribbon cutting planned for 8:45 will be followed by appearances from outdoor personalities and celebrities, family events and merchandise giveaways.
“Our customers across Arkansas and the entire region are extremely passionate about the outdoors and waited a long time for this,” said Cabela’s CEO Tommy Millner. “Opening the doors to this fabulous store will finally bring the unique Cabela’s retail experience to the people of the Natural State, which will allow us to better serve them. It’s an exciting time.”
The store is located just off the region’s main artery, I-540, and adjacent to the Pinnacle Hills Promenade mall. Just a few miles to the south, Walmart operates one of its nicer supercenters and for the past year the company has placed a renewed emphasis on sporting goods as part of a larger merchandise strategy that sought to re-emphasize key categories important to its core shoppers.
The new Cabela’s will also face competition from a large format Academy Sports+Outdoors store located adjacent to Walmart.
The new location is one of five units Cabela’s plans to open this year. Two stores have already opened in Witchita, Ks and Tulalip, Wa., giving the company a total of 37 units. In addition to the Rogers location, stores are also slated to open this year in Charleston, Wv and Union Gap, Wa. The Union Gap location is noteworthy because it will be the first of a new breed of small format stores regarded as Outpost stores due to their 40,000-sq.-ft. size.
The five openings are part of a strategy to accelerate retail expansion that will see the company open six large format stores in 2013 along with three Outpost locations. The company tends to preannounce its locations due to the high profile nature of its stores and has indicated next year’s large store openings will take place in Grandville, Mi., Louisville, Ky., Columbus, Ohio, Green Bay, Wis., and Lone Tree and Thornton, Co.