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American Girl Store Expected to Boost Columbus Retail, Tourism Numbers

COLUMBUS (Ken Hines) -- Thousands of doll fans are expected to flock to Easton Town Center over the weekend for the grand opening of the new American Girl store.

Shoppers from as far away as 250 miles are expected to visit the new store, which is the only one of its kind in Ohio, and one of only 15 in the nation.

Visitors to the 11,500 square-foot store can purchase American Girl products, while also taking advantage of a Doll Hair Salon, bistro, and private party room.

American Girl Vice President Wade Copeland said the store's expected success should spill over to neighboring businesses.

"We'll see 650,000 people go through the store annually, and we will pull folks to Easton and places around Columbus."

The area's tourism industry also figures to get a boost from the new store, thanks to the company's large base of loyal fans.

"Now we can piggyback on that and offer opportunities to check out the zoo, COSI -- instead of a one day trip," Experience Columbus's Scott Peacock said.

American Girl officials will help the city's effort by offering hotel packages to shoppers.
 
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