BANGOR, Maine — After kicking the tires on and off for the last nine years, Cadillac Mountain Sports has gotten things in gear and driven its way into Bangor.
Cadillac Mountain Sports president Matthew Curtis confirmed his company has signed a long-term lease inside the Bangor Mall and has scheduled a grand opening for April 5-8.
“We’ve been considering coming to Bangor since 2003, but most recently got serious when we bought a 1.7-acre piece of land next to the Circuit City building [at 700 Stillwater Ave.],” said Curtis. “We felt being inside the mall was the best option at this point, but having that property allows us to possibly expand inside the mall and sell the land or expand by building our own store on that land.”
The mall space, which the outdoor activity and sports retailer officially took possession of Jan. 1, is located directly across from Ruby Tuesday in the J.C. Penney wing of the mall and is currently being renovated outside and inside.
The retail space is 3,276 square feet, making it the smallest of the company’s three stores. The one in Ellsworth is 13,000 square feet and the one in Bar Harbor is 8,000.
Curtis said the time was right for his 23-year-old business to gear up and head into Bangor.
“The Bangor market seems very stable and that’s given us more confidence,” he said. “And this move helps give us a larger market with a more diverse population geared more toward winter sports. We’ve struggled with winter sports merchandise sales in Hancock County, where it’s so summer-oriented.”
Curtis also pointed out the advantage of the new store being closer to Baxter State Park, the Appalachian Trail and the ski resorts of western Maine.
The new store will employ 12 people overall, with six to eight being full-time staffers.
“We’re excited to have Cadillac Mountain Sports expand into Bangor,” said Tanya Pereira, city economic development specialist. “They’ve been a strong brand on the coast for many years.
“This is yet another piece of great news for the Bangor region as we continue to see smart business investments after several years of tough economic times.”
The grand opening will feature a 20 percent off store inventory sale along with four days of events including a skateboard competition, a portable climbing wall, a 5-km road race and appearances by sponsor athletes.
Cadillac Mountain Sports currently employs 30 year-round full- and part-time employees and another 40-50 seasonal full- and part-timers. It also operates Cadillac’s Patagonia, Cadillac’s The North Face and Cadillac’s Nike stores on Cottage Street in Bar Harbor.
The new store will feature high tech performance products for backpacking, rock climbing, skateboarding, snowboarding and running.
Cadillac Mountain Sports was in Bangor 14 years ago, but in a much different incarnation. Cadillac Mountain Sports of Bangor, a licensed location owned by one of CMS’ former managers, opened in the W.T. Grant building downtown in 1997. CMS shared advertising and expenses and management strategies with the Bangor store for six years, but in 2003, the CMS license wasn’t renewed and the store’s name was changed to Epic Sports.