Mega outdoors outfitter Cabela’s will open its newest location in Gainesville, Virginia, on March 9. The opening ceremonies begin at 9:45 with an archer slicing through a red ribbon with an arrow. When the doors open at 10 am, guests can enjoy a variety of activities designed to showcase Cabela’s hunting, fishing, and camping gear and accessories.
The 80,000 square-foot store, which employs more than 175 people, will dazzle outdoors enthusiasts with its massive array of merchandise, displays and demonstration areas, including multiple fishing pole aisles, an archery department that includes a tech room for tweaking equipment and an indoor range, and a firearms library that every hunter and sport shooter will want to check out.
Besides the merchandise, customers will be able to browse the store’s collection of museum worthy vintage outdoor photos and memorabilia, hand painted murals of local scenes, such as an expansive fresco of the shores of the Rapidan River, and taxidermy exhibits of mounted bears, moose, bass, hawks, and all sorts of animals, fish and fowl that can be found locally in Virginia and around the world.
A huge mountain side replica is the most impressive fixture in the store, featuring a large aquarium that will be stocked with local fish, such as trout and bass, but these are just for the looking, not for hooking.
If you are interested in trying your hand at fly-fishing or other forms of casting, trained staff will be on hand to let customers try out the rods, reels and lures.
For those who can’t wait to get out and camp, a complete campsite is on display, including a faux fire, so that customers can crawl inside the display tent, test out sleeping bags and try out gear, such as a fishing pole like device for dangling hotdogs and marshmallows over a campfire.
Even dogs will love the store, which carries a large selection of dog beds, chew toys, and training decoys for hunting dogs, such as Cabela’s resident mascot Ellie, a 10-year old yellow Labrador Retriever, who will be more than glad to show visitors how a pro flushes and fetches.
If you prefer feathered friends, that you eat, you can gander at an assortment of turkey calls, that a staff expert can demonstrate, beckoning plastic prey to a camo duck blind on display.
As part of the opening festivities, famous outdoor experts will be on hand, such as Eva Shockey from the outdoor Channel, who will be at the store on Saturday, March 11, from 1 to 4 PM; Trent Cole, NFL pro and Cabela’s ambassador, who will be at the store on Sunday, March 12, from 12 noon to 4 PM; Captain Miitchell Blake, a professional saltwater guide; Mike Hanback, host of Big Deer TV on the Sportsman Channel; and Patrick Hoover, a renowned archery hunter.
For those who are lucky enough to be among the first 50 customers through the door on March 10, 11 and 12, there will be giveaways of utility bags, caps, and tripod stools, as well as a chance to win a GoPro Hero5 Black. There will also be a number of family fun activities on Saturday and Sunday, March 11 and 12, from 11 AM to 5 PM.
The new Cabela’s, which will be the third store in Virginia and the 86th worldwide, is located at 5291 Wellington Branch Dr. cross from the popular Stuff! Consignments shop and adjacent to Virginia Gateway Center.