It's not often that a brand new department store enters the Twin Cities marketplace, which explains why the Woodbury community is currently buzzing about Gordmans, scheduled to open (March 24*) at in the former location.
Gordmans has drawn comparisions to stores like JC Penney and Kohl's, but according to company CEO Jeff Gordman, it is Gordmans' commitment to carrying only nationally known brand names in apparel, accessories, gifts, furniture and other household goods that sets it apart.
"Gordmans features everyday savings of up to 60 percent off department and specialty store prices," said Gordman from corporate headquarters in Omaha, Neb. "While the company operates within the value segment of the industry, Gordmans differentiates itself by offering department and specialty store name brands, fashions and styles in a more upscale shopping environment."
Gordmans has a long history in the Midwest. Originally known as Richman-Gordman, the first store opened in Omaha in the late 1930s. More stores were soon added in Nebraska and surrounding states and for several years, the chain also included 1/2 Price Stores.
In 1996, Jeff Gordman took over as CEO and the store was re-named Gordmans. There are currently 68 Gordmans stores in 16 states including Illinois, Iowa, Missouri and Colorado.
In addition to Woodbury, which Gordman referred to "as one of the top submarkets in the Twin Cities," a second local Gordmans will also have its grand opening on April 1 at Burnsville Center.
As is the case in all communities where Gordmans stores are located, Woodbury residents can expect to see a strong local presence from their new department store. According to Gordman, the company has a long history of involvement with Partners in Education, a collaboration among businesses, civic organizations and public schools throughout the U.S.
"In conjunction with our guests, our company has raised over $800,000 for this worthwhile cause since 2000," he said. "In honor of our grand opening in Woodbury, we will be donating $2,500 to the local school district as well as collecting donations from our guests during our two-week grand opening period."
The best place to see a preview of Gordmans is on its website at www.gordmans.com, which even includes an interactive store tour. In addition to the website, Gordmans is actively involved in social media outlets such as Facebook and Twitter as a primary means of advertising sales and specials to their customers.
The grand opening of the Woodbury Gordmans will begin at 8 a.m. on Friday, April 1 with a complimentary light breakfast. The ribbon-cutting ceremony will start at approximately 8:30 a.m.; Mayor Mary Giuliani Stephens, Police Chief Lee Vague, Fire Chief Todd Johnson and Woodbury City Council members will all be on hand. CEO Jeff Gordman will also be in attendance. The event is open to the public.
(*The original story had the opening as April 1. The store is open; the grand opening is April 1.)