As Target stores close, community holds candlelight vigil in mourning


Target will shutter 12 “under-performing” stores in early 2018, and some communities aren’t taking the news well.

The Minneapolis-based retailer has notified employees at the impacted stores, which are expected to close on Feb. 3. The closing stores include two stores in Minnesota and others including: Harper Woods, Mich. (Eastland): Hutchinson, Kan.; Benton Harbor, Mich.; Macon, Ga.; Slidell, La.; Lauderhill, Fla.; Matteson, Ill.; Romeoville, Ill.; Baltimore (West); and San Antonio (Far East).

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A group in Hutchinson, Kan., disheartened by the news, decided to host a candlelight vigil the night before the store closes, The Minneapolis Star Tribune reported. A Facebook event, which attracted the attention of hundreds in the community, invited customers to gather to “mourn the loss of our beloved Target. Meet at 7 p.m. in the Target parking lot.”

The event invited people to “BYOC,” or bring your own candles. The store is located at 1529 E. 17th Ave. in Hutchinson.

Target closed five stores last year and 13 in 2015, but the chain has mostly seen growth in recent years. Target also plans to open 35 new locations in the next year, and will redesign at least 1,000 of its current stores.

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The redesign includes: dedicated parking where workers will bring out online orders; a second entrance will allow “time-starved” customers to easily navigate the grocery area, a wine and beer shop, self-checkout lanes and an order pick-up station; and more circular center aisles that will have displays that engage customers with “compelling products in unexpected places.

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