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Shop Around: Academy Sports opens second Midlands store

krupon@thestate.comJuly 17, 2014 

Academy Sports + Outdoors is opening its second Midlands’ store Friday at 237 Park Terrace Drive.

The new store brings the massive sports retailer to the Harbison area. The first Columbia-area Academy opened three years ago in the Village at Sandhill in Northeast Richland, at the corner of Two Notch and Clemson roads.

Both areas have seen growth in the sporting-goods sector in recent years.

Dick’s Sporting Goods opened a new store in Northeast Richland two years ago and remodeled its older Harbison-area store on Bower Parkway last year, giving it an updated look and upgrading the golf department and footwear section.

The newest 72,000-square-foot Academy will be similar to the one in Northeast, with sections for nearly every sport, from hunting and lacrosse to football and golf; an archery range for trying out bows; and a golf range for testing clubs. It also has a large shoe and apparel section, which includes its own lower priced private-label brands.

The store also sells outdoor living equipment, including gas grills and kayaks, as well as pet supplies and Gamecocks’ merchandise.

The new store, to be managed by Brian Dodge, brings 150 jobs to the area, according to the company.

Also, coming to the Park Terrace site, according to developer Micah Grober with Atlantic Retail Properties, are:

•  Guitar Center. The Westlake Village, Calif.,-based music store is set to open next spring, according to information provided by the company. The 50-year-old retailer is in growth mode, opening several stores a year, and has more than 265 stores nationwide. In addition to guitars and accessories, the retailer sells drums, keyboards, and recording and DJ equipment.

•  Salsarita’s Fresh Cantina. This will be the Mexican restaurant’s third location in the Midlands, joining outlets in the Vista and Lexington. The restaurant will front along Park Terrace, according to Grober. Efforts to reach the company for further details were unsuccessful.

•  Sports Clips. The sports-themed haircut chain will open another Midlands outlet in a building located at the rear of the site, next to Academy, Grober said. The outlet is still under construction and should be finished by this fall.

The center still has several parcels available for lease in its two outparcels, Grober said. He said the amount of square footage still available is a moving target as his company works to finalize deals for the site.

Other recent openings in the Midlands:

Craft beer bonanza. Craft and Draft recently opened at 2706 Devine St., selling a variety of national and regional craft beers, including some made in Columbia. The store, founded by Kellan Monroe and Andrew Johnson, offers tastings and sells growlers — or jugs — of the craft beer.

Get your Aldi quarter ready. Aldi will open a new location in Lexington next week. The low-cost grocer plans a grand opening Thursday at 5182 Sunset Blvd. However, shoppers will be able to sample products and tour the store from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Wednesday during a preview event. The company says it sells 1,300 commonly purchased grocery items under its private label for as much as 50 percent off similar products. The store reduces overhead costs through practices such as “renting” carts to shoppers for a quarter to encourage them to return them to their stalls and charging for grocery bags in an effort to get customers to bring their own. The store accepts only cash, debit or EBT cards.

Reach Rupon at (803) 771-8308

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