After years of requests and about a year of construction, West Central Missouri shoppers are finally able to shop at Hobby Lobby in Sedalia.
Monday morning marked the grand opening of the new Sedalia location at West Broadway Boulevard and Curry Street, which is the 20th store in Missouri.
Many local officials and citizens alike were on hand for the ribbon cutting at the 55,000 square-foot retail facility and to spend at least a few minutes browsing through the new store, which features floral, fabric, needle art, custom framing, baskets, home accents, wearable art, arts and crafts, jewelry making, scrapbooking and paper crafting supplies.
“I’m always excited when a new business comes into town, I’m always very excited,” Mayor Stephen Galliher told the Democrat. “It’s good for the community to grow like it is and have more business coming in. This is a great store, it’s one that will draw people in from miles and miles around. A lot of happy ladies in the area now that Hobby Lobby is open.
“What I’ve seen it’s a lot of good things, a lot of variety and things people will want. Even being a man I don’t mind coming in Hobby Lobby every once in a while,” he added with a laugh.
Galliher wasn’t the only one to comment on the national craft and home decor chain’s Sedalia location bringing in customers from around the West Central Missouri area.
“It’s centrally located for the surrounding towns and it will draw from those areas,” District Manager Steve Gamble said of the decision to locate in Sedalia.
“It’s a nice new market for us,” added Store Manager Charles Neiheisel.
While Monday was the grand opening, the store opened Friday and Gamble said the first few days went “very well.”
“It’s very popular, very positive customer comments,” Neiheisel said of the store’s customers Friday and Saturday. “Everyone seemed very excited and happy we were in the area and they now have somewhere local to shop for their crafting and hobby needs.”
Sedalia Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Angie Thomas also noted the conviencence factor of the new location.
“Now we can shop right here in Sedalia locally. I know a lot of people go to Columbia and Lee’s Summit for Hobby Lobby, so it’s great to have them here and to be able to keep people shopping locally,” Thomas said. “And also it’s great for the surrounding communities because the ones that are already coming here, like from Green Ridge, Marshall, Smithton, Otterville, that are already visiting Sedalia to shop, it gives them another opportunity to shop at Hobby Lobby.”
The store has only been open for three days — Hobby Lobby is closed on Sundays — and already it is attracting customers from around the area, not just Sedalia. Becci Baker, of Marshall, and friends in her crafting group made the trip Monday morning to purchase items.
“We’re excited for this new option,” Baker said. “We’re all crafters. Our group gets together once a month and works on projects.”
Mary Scott and Dave Anderson also traveled from Marshall to visit the new store.
“It’s closer, I didn’t have to drive to Columbia,” Scott said. “I’ve been waiting to come, I have a big list (of items to purchase). I’m glad to see it’s here.”
Dianne Simon, Vice President of Property Management for E.W. Thompson Inc./Thompson Hills Investment Corp., made the announcement Hobby Lobby was coming to Sedalia during a Sedalia City Council meeting in early 2015. She was shopping Monday morning with her daughter, Christina, and she said plans are already starting for the next business venture.
“We’re very excited to have (Hobby Lobby) in Sedalia and to open up possibilities for more businesses to come with them, follow them,” Simon said. “The people who bought the property from (Thompson Hills), Copeland Development, we’re already working with them on the land adjacent (to Hobby Lobby) for an opportunity for another new business for Sedalia.”
Nicole Cooke can be reached at 660-530-0138 or @NicoleRCooke.