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Boo-tique beckons while Sears rises from the dead

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One animated yard decoration, Butler with Skull on Tray, scares up smiles at Halloween City, now open at Wenatchee Valley Mall.

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By now you’ve heard that Marshalls, the national off-price retailer, will open by next summer at Wenatchee Valley Mall in East Wenatchee. But that’s not the only project under way at the mall. Here are a few others:

Halloween City (actual slogan: “So much for so little, it’s spooky”) opened last month in the former Sears space. Well, in about a quarter of the Sears space. Still, it’s a huge, horrific emporium filled with shelves of skulls and skeletons, racks of ghosts and tombstones, whole departments of blood-and-guts costumes and displays of animated yard decorations, including “Convulsing Zombie” and “Butler with Skull on Tray.” But don’t fear. The frightful boo-tique is an affiliate of Party City, the huge chain of whoopee stores, so there are also princess costumes and cute little pumpkin ornaments for kiddies and non-bleeding hearts.

The best news coming from the closure of Sears (after nearly 80 years in the Wenatchee Valley) is that Moses Lake businessman Clifton Phillips will keep the venerable retail name alive at the mall with the opening of a Sears Hometown Store. Phillips owns four other Hometown Stores, including those in Moses Lake and Ephrata, and plans to be open here by Black Friday (Nov. 29). The new 10,813-square-foot store, which will carry Craftsman tools and Kenmore appliances, is now under construction in combined spaces formerly occupied by Nu Art and PacSun.

Mall execs continue to sign up temporary retailers for the upcoming holiday season. Those include some of the mall’s traditional favorites — Hickory Farms, See’s Candies and Calendar Club — along with a bunch of new merchandisers. Hickory Farms will actually have a storefront this year, with others at kiosks in the mall’s central hall. For a complete list and opening dates, visit

Hunt for treasures at … you guessed it

The full-sized, open-mouthed, huge-toothed grizzly bear rug gets a lot of comments. So does the beautiful, framed set of Indian chief tobacco stamps. So does the humongo-sized wall carving of a fisherman in a storm.

We’ve got a lot of surprises scattered through the store,” said Ben Thresher, the new owner of Treasure Hunters’ Theatre, but now renamed simply Treasure Hunters. “Customers spend a lot of time searching, sometimes shelf by shelf, for that perfect item.”

Thresher, 38, bought the Wenatchee antique and consignment business about six weeks ago. “I’ve always been interested in antiques and quality second-hand stuff,” he said. “And I’ve been a customer here since it opened.” So, he said, he’s a natural to run a store filled with unusual and interesting merchandise.

Such as? Aisles filled with antiques and collectibles. Books, dishes, other housewares, paintings and other artworks, toys and games. Vinyl records, VHS tapes, CDs and DVDs. Tools and appliances.

We try to have a little bit of everything,” he said.

Details: Treasure Hunters, 619 S. Wenatchee Ave., Wenatchee. Open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. 888-2722.

Social-media marketing ideas

Tweet yourself a reminder to be sure to attend one of the info-packed workshops given by Leavenworth social media guru April Welch. She just wrapped up an excellent three-session series at Wenatchee’s YWCA that covered the ins-and-outs of Instagram, best practices for social media marketing and a 90-minute Q&A about Pinterest, Google Plus, Foursquare, Tagboard and other social media options. She goes deep into the subject but uses humor, thank goodness, to ease the pain and confusion. Her company, Flirting with Social, has an events schedule at

By the way, Welch’s workshops were part of the YWCA’s Lunch-N-Learn series, held at noon Wednesdays at the group’s headquarters at 212 First St. in Wenatchee. Topics vary, and upcoming sessions address the difficulties of caring for aging parents. For $10, you get the workshop and lunch from Café AZ’s. (We recommend the roast beef sandwich on sourdough with pepperjack cheese and extra horseradish sauce. Yummy.) Get more info at

This weekly column is compiled from “Everyday Business,” a blog by World reporter Mike Irwin. You can reach him at 665-1179 or

Reach Mike Irwin at 509-665-1179 or . Read his blog Everyday Business. follow him on Twitter at @MikeIrwinWW.