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Cabela’s to open ‘outpost’ store near Yakima

Cabela's new store near Stateline, Idaho, was an instant hit. The region also drew other major retail stores.
 (The Spokesman-Review)
Cabela's new store near Stateline, Idaho, was an instant hit. The region also drew other major retail stores. (The Spokesman-Review)

OUTDOOR RETAILERS – Cabela’s announced this morning it is introducing a new store format that will bring the outdoor sporting goods retailer to Washington Plaza, a shopping center under construction at the former Costco property near Yakima.

The news was reported by the Yakima Herald-Republic.

The Sidney, Neb., company announced the Union Gap store, the first under its smaller "Cabela’s Outpost Store" format, during its fourth-quarter earnings call to shareholders.

Cabela’s plans to open the 40,000-square-foot store by this fall. The Post Falls Cabela's store, by comparison, has 125,000 square feet of showroom space.

Despite Cabela’s popularity, local businesses that have served Yakima Valley’s outdoor and hunting community remain optimistic.

Gary Fairbanks, owner of Fairbanks Outfitters, a fly fishing shop in Yakima, said he can compete on price, noting that he has ordered product for customers at a lower price than listed in the Cabela’s catalogs.

"They have a huge selection," he said. "But (its) prices are quite high compared to mine."

Read on for more details from the Yakima Herald-Republic.

Steve Van Klinken, owner of Grumpy’s in Union Gap, said that a Cabela’s store could impact his store, but didn’t think it would lead him to go out of business.

"We’re pretty diversified and we have other things they don’t carry," he said, mentioning items such as surplus gear and heating pellets.

Cabela’s currently has 34 stores, with plans to open eight more in the next two years. The Union Gap store will be the third in Washington state. A store in Lacey, near Olympia, opened in 2007, and a store on the Tulalip Indian Reservation, near Everett, is under construction.

In the news release, Cabela’s said other stores with the Cabela’s Outpost Store concept are in the works, but no specifics were given.

Cabela’s announcement comes several months after J.C. Penney identified itself as the first anchor for the $40 million, 10-acre development when it submitted land use documents to the city of Union Gap.

Despite Bruning and Union Gap officials keeping the Cabela’s deal under wraps, there were hints that the retailer was looking at the market, including a recent report of a private jet arriving from Cabela’s headquarters city. Cabela’s has looked here before.

In 2007, CenterCal initially lost out to developers who had plans to bring Cabela’s to the area. The retailer was also mentioned in a January 2008 site plan submitted to Union Gap development officials.

But just a few weeks later, Cabela’s announced it was scaling back its expansion plans, backing away from a Yakima Valley location.

Later in 2008, CenterCal appeared to be in line to buy the property, but the two parties could not settle on the purchase price.

Negotiations resumed in the fall of 2010 and were completed last August, when CenterCal bought the property for $4.2 million.

Rich Landers
Rich Landers joined The Spokesman-Review in 1977. He is the Outdoors editor for the Sports Department writing and photographing stories about hiking, hunting, fishing, boating, conservation, nature and wildlife and related topics.

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