Cabela’s gets ready to go fishing for customers in Cheektowaga

CHEEKTOWAGA, N.Y. (WIVB) – Four years after the City of Buffalo cut bait with Bass Pro, the outdoor chain’s chief rival is dropping anchor in one of Buffalo’s biggest suburbs.

Cabela’s gave News 4 a sneak peek Tuesday inside its new 88,000-square foot store on Walden Avenue near the New York State Thruway. It opens to the public on August 7.

Cabela’s says the Cheektowaga store, the retailer’s first store in New York, is designed to surround customers in an outdoor experience complete with wildlife displays and a mountain replica. It will feature an indoor archery range, a gun library, a boat shop, a deli, even a fudge shop.

“The customer is going to see the wow factor, as far as the taxidermy, the aquarium,” said Scott Armstrong, general manager of the Cheektowaga store. “We make fudge. Some people say ‘Cabela’s? Fudge?’ We have a gun library with a lot of collectable guns in it. We have experts in every single department of the store. Our customers can talk, learn and we’ll probably learn from our customers as well.”

And unlike the Bass Pro project, which was envisioned as the centerpiece of Canalside and relied on $66 million in public subsidies, the new Cabela’s store is receiving no handouts from taxpayers.

“It’s going to generate additional dollars through sales tax,” said Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz. “I was very pleased when Cabela’s announced it was coming to Erie County and Western New York. They did not seek a tax assistance from the county to build this facility. They did it on their own. And now when people from all across this region and Southern Ontario go to Cabela’s those dollars will be flowing through Erie County.”

Cabela’s has moved into space that was last home to a Wegmans supermarket. The new store is creating 225 full- and part-time jobs.

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