With new signage going up this week, a Target store is on track to open in October as the chain puts down roots for the first time in La Cañada Flintridge, with help from an LCF native who will manage the new location.
Store team leader Geoffrey Weaver, 29, grew up in LCF, graduated from La Cañada High School in 2007, and said he’s excited to be working in his hometown, which, he added, has been welcoming.
“The community response has been really positive,” said Weaver. “It makes things easier.”
The store remains on schedule for a VIG (Very Important Guest) opening on Oct. 16 and a grand opening on Oct. 21, with a “non-publicized” soft opening in between.
The Target is a small-format store, with a “curated” collection of merchandise, including clothing.
“They do look smaller,” Weaver said of such stores, adding that LCF’s outlet is one-third the size of a normal Target.
The store will have the same items as a regular Target, but “instead of 30 types of Tide you have 10.”
The Target will offer groceries, have a Starbucks and such features as self-checkout as well as the traditional kind, Weaver said. The site will have 171 parking spaces of its own, with the majority on the rooftop parking in the back.
The city has required Target to have shopping carts with auto-lock mechanisms that remain on-site, so as not to congest the parking garage across the street.
There are still job openings at the store, which will employ about 100 people, Weaver said.
Weaver acknowledged that Sports Chalet, the former retailer at the site, was an institution in the city before it closed. He believes his store can fill the void.
“I’m really confident about what we offer to the community,” he said.
Weaver graduated from USC in 2012 with a degree in philosophy, politics and law, and then earned a master’s degree in education at the University of Pennsylvania in 2014. As for winding up back in LCF and surrounded by familiar faces, he said, “It’s kind of crazy.”