Archive for Wednesday, August 7, 2002

Cabela’s opening set for next week

August 7, 2002

It's official Cabela's is opening its doors.

At 8 a.m. next Thursday, the hunting and fishing outfitter 15 miles east of Tonganoxie will open.

John Castillo, assistant manager, thinks there may be a crowd.

"You never know," Castillo said. "But I can tell you from the two previous stores I've opened that a soft opening is anything but soft. We expect to be pretty busy on the 15th."

Castillo said a "soft" opening is when a store opens the doors and just sees who comes in.

"I think the main reason for it is it gets folks in the door and helps us wait on customers and work out the bugs," Castillo said.

A grand opening is set for Sept. 6 through 15.

As of Aug. 15, hours will be 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Sunday's hours are set for 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Here's a list of some of those things Cabela's visitors will see:

An African diorama depicting a life-size elephant, rhino, cape buffalo, lion and leopard.

A 55,000-gallon walk-through aquarium stocked with fish, including those native to Kansas and Missouri.

A 36-foot-tall mountain complete with running water, waterfalls and a trout pond.

The world's largest bronze wildlife sculpture. Created by the artist, Fred Hoppe, the outdoor wildlife sculpture will tower 30 feet above the store entrance.

The store carries traditional sports products, as well as gift items and clothing and shoes for all ages.

"Our departments appeal to everybody," Castillo said. "But what we're known for is hunting, fishing and camping."

Cabela's already has its share of loyal customers.

"I think the neat thing about our customers is that many of them have been with us for over 40 years, since we first started," Castillo said. "We really have a lot of long-term relationships out there."

Cabela's officials predict the store will draw 4 million visitors a year.

Castillo said he looks forward to the store's opening, the culmination of what he and other store employees have been working toward these last months.

"We really can't wait for the doors to open so we can start meeting people again," Castillo said. "We love to talk hunting and fishing and help them find the products they need."

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