GARDEN CITY, Mich. — It’s a sign of the times. The original Kmart store that led to the nationwide chain of stores is going out of business. Parent company Sears Holdings Corp. is shuttering hundreds of its underperforming stores because of stiff competition from other retailers like Wal-Mart and Amazon.
On March 1, 1962, the Garden City Kmart store opened for business at the corner of Ford Road and Middlebelt. An advertisement was placed in the Detroit Free Press to lure in shoppers for the grand opening sale.
Exactly 56 years later, the store is holding its final liquidation sale. Most of store discounts range from 25 percent to 70 percent off. Clothing and store fixtures make up the remaining items that are still available for purchase.
“I think it’s a big deal,” said customer Matt Lannom from Garden City. “When I lived here, it was the place to come. I think they are going to be done. I used up all of my points today. I don’t think I’ll be getting any more. I look for some clothes for my daughter. They had very little kids stuff. I got a couple of shirts and toys.”
Shopper Martha Terry said her son’s first high school job was at this very Kmart store.
“It’s kind of a shame,” Terry explained. “I’ve gone here all along and then now it’s busy that it’s closing. That’s always a disappointment. Yeah, it’s too bad that they were overtaken by the Target or whatever. It stops people from coming here. It’s been a good store. I’m hoping that they have some kitchen stuff left.”
This isn’t the only Kmart store that’s closing. Other area stores going out of business include Adrian, Jackson Livonia, Plymouth, Roseville, Waterford and Westland, among hundreds of others nationwide.
“They have a lot of good deals on things before they close,” said Stacey, a shopper from Westland. “Everything was a pretty fair price. I love shopping here. I just bought this shirt and put it on already. I got a good deal on it.”
There’s only a few more days to snap up the great bargains. The Garden City Kmart store is expected to close for good sometime between March 26 and 28.
Visit the original Kmart Store at 29600 Ford Rd, Garden City, MI 48135. Hours are 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. during the week and 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Sunday.