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Scaring Up Business

Spooky, kooky, or Wookie? What will you be for Halloween this year? No need to fret: Seasonal stores have set up shop across DFW. At least two dozen—we've lost count (and we don't mean Dracula)—are increasing traffic to otherwise empty spaces, The Weitzman Group SVP Richard Polishuk tells us.

 
Perren Gasc, Beau Barkerding, Richard Polishuk and Austin Schenkel
At the Spirit Halloween store at Grapevine Towne Center, Richard (third from right, with TWG colleagues Perren GascBeau Barkerding, and Austin Schenkel) has signed numerous leases for seasonal retailers, this time repping Spirit's corporate stores. He's inked the Grapevine location, a 13k SF Spirit at Trinity Valley at Josey Lane and SH-190 in Carrollton, and a freestanding shop at MacArthur and LBJ in Irving. Richard says they're great for landlords because Halloween stores expose shoppers to a center's tenant mix immediately prior to the critical Christmas shopping season.
VooDoo Halloween store
At 516 S. I-35 in Denton, the VooDoo Halloween store fills an 8k SF freestanding location that was previously occupied by a Kawasaki cycle dealer. Axis Realty Group consultant Lane Joseph says a typical Halloween store occupies a location for about two months. The VooDoo store generates income instead of costs piling up in a vacant building, he adds. Traffic gradually increases leading up to Halloween, too, so prospective tenants can see how attractive the location is as well as the floor plan in use and how it functions. Plus, they can pick up a Freddy Krueger mask. Win-win.
Perren Gasc, Beau Barkerding, Richard Polishuk and Austin Schenkel
Richard tells us Halloween stores look for boxes with visibility. It's also critical that the spaces are C.O. ready, he says, noting that tenants want to sign and lease without spending money to get the space ready. Basically, sign  and turn on the electricity, Richard says. Visibility is more important than co-tenancy, he adds. They often will lease freestanding boxes, like at MacArthur and LBJ. They are looking for regional-draw locations. Halloween and Christmas dominate the seasonal store category, but where they differ is that Halloween stores typically take boxes and Christmas stores take around 6k-8k SF. Halloween stores typically run mid-September through early November, and Christmas stores from around Nov. 15 through Jan. 15.