AROUND THE CLOCK

Posted: Tuesday, September 05, 2000

Gottschalks opened 27 stores last week.

Alas, Juneau's wasn't one of them.

Not to worry, shopping-challenged Juneau faithful. The Nugget Mall Gottschalks is still slated to open this Thursday, along with its other stores across Alaska.

Gottschalks purchased all seven Lamonts stores in Alaska as well as 30 in Washington, Idaho, Oregon and Utah after Lamonts filed for reorganization under Chapter 11 of the bankruptcy code on Jan. 2, 2000. The Nugget Mall Lamonts closed -- to a local gnashing of teeth -- on June 25.

According to Gottschalks officials, the new clothing store will include a wider selection of brand names and an extensive home furnishings department including bed and bath items and cookery.

"We'll have a much wider selection than Lamonts in the past," said Fred Bentelspacher, vice president of the Fresno-based department store chain. "We have a big grand opening planned. There'll be lots of merchandise on sale come Thursday."

As if that news isn't enough, Sears regional marketing director Bill Kent said this week that he'll be conducting interviews on Sept. 7 with the two finalists for the Sears retail dealer store slated to open in Juneau. A contract could be signed shortly thereafter.



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