Over 500 people patiently and politely filed into the Art Van Furniture store at 1301 E. Mall Dr., Springfield Township, during the opening minutes today of Art Van's new 90,000-square foot flagship store's grand opening.
Some were motivated by the prospect of a free gift — a personal coffeemaker given to the first 500 through the doors.
But most, it turned out, were there to see what Art Van, Michigan’s dominant furniture retailer, is bringing to the Toledo area with its new megastore, the company’s first retailing site outside its home state.
John Sayre of Monclova Township was among the early arrivals, but he didn't come for free gifts, face-painting, food, music, or the St. John’s Jesuit High School marching band, which strutted into the store at 9:30 a.m. to ramp up the fun. Mr. Sayre came to buy, specifically, a chair for his vacation home.
“I used to live in Jackson, Michigan and Lansing and I’ve always bought my furniture from Art Van,” he said. “I love this store. I have been quietly waiting for them to come here.”
Twenty minutes later, Mr. Sayre had bought a red chair. “I have retro decor and this will match perfectly,” he said.
Ann Hodson of Monclova Township came just to check out the merchandise, but in just 10 minutes she had bought a chair and ottoman, and she went back inside to price bedroom furniture.
“I think it’s just wonderful that they’ve come here and brought all these jobs,” she said.