PANAMA CITY — National sporting goods chain Academy Sports + Outdoors is on track to open its first Panama City store next week, and store managers plan a weekend filled with festivities.
Academy Sports is hosting a three-day grand opening celebration July 29-31 full of limited-time deals at the new store, located at 820 W. 23rd St., the former site of Hobby Lobby.
Scheduled hours are Sunday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., Friday from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m., and Saturday from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.
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Academy Sports + Outdoors is dedicated to empowering, encouraging and connecting our communities through local efforts that involve sports, field and stream, military and first responder organizations,” said Fred Foster, director of the Panama City store. “We look forward to building relationships throughout the Panama City area to support and create new opportunities for residents to have fun out there.”
During the grand opening, customers can expect events for the whole family, including special appearances by professional saltwater angler Captain Sharky, interactive demonstrations by brands sold at Academy Sports, games, in-store scavenger hunts and free food samplings.
In addition to the activities, there will be special deals and offers exclusive to the Panama City location with discounts on fishing gear, select apparel and headwear, Pit Boss Grills and bikes.
“Our assortment of products is curated to fit the needs of the Panama City community and provides the national brands like Nike, YETI, Adidas, North Face, Under Armour, Columbia Sportswear,” Foster said. “It will also carry a curated assortment of hand-selected products specifically for the fun sports and outdoor activities our Panama City customers enjoy.”
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Academy Sports is engaging the community by supporting such organizations as Southport Youth Sports, Bay United Soccer Club, Bay County Youth Soccer, Panama City Beach Marlins and the Panama City Fishing Rodeo, Foster said.
Additionally, the Panama City store will celebrate its grand opening by surprising four area schools’ outdoor education classes with a $6,000 donation. Twenty students from the programs will receive a $100 Academy Sports gift card to shop the store ahead of the grand opening for such items as fishing equipment and outdoor gear. Academy Sports also will donate a $1,000 gift card to each of the schools’ programs to purchase additional items.
The Panama City store marks the brand’s third store in the Panhandle — with other locations in Tallahassee and Pensacola — and its 13th store in Florida. Company officials said they expect to open 80 to 100 stores during the next five years.
For more information about the grand opening deals and events, visit academy.com/panamacity.