Maggie Valley Town Center holds grand opening

By Shelby Harrell Staff Writer | May 31, 2014
Photo by: Shelby Harrell Maggie Valley Town Center owner Chris Chagnon stands near Suite 6 with his sons Sean and Jeremy.

The sound of bluegrass and the smell of barbecue filled the Maggie Valley Town Center plaza on Saturday afternoon as the plaza’s tenants and owner Chris Chagnon kicked off a grand opening celebration.

The celebration included live music provided by the local bluegrass band "The Sea Notes" alongside Jackson Moody and Steve Richards as well as concession snacks and barbecue plates for sale.

Though the plaza has been open since early April, the 16 businesses located in the plaza have just been getting settled in.

Chagnon purchased the plaza in December and gave it a ‘facelift’ before leasing it out to tenants in February. With help from the Action Creek Realty, Chagnon successfully rented out all of the business spaces except one.

“This is a great variety of people. We get along great — we’re like a big family,” Chagnon said.

The Maggie Valley Town Center used to be called “Stallard Plaza” and used to be owned by a dentist whose office was in the plaza. Chagnon purchased the building when it fell into disarray and now that it has been renovated, he said business has been going well.

“All of these stores in the plaza will be open year-round,” he added.

Plaza tenants

Steve Lunnedorg, manager of Cool Gifts A 2 Z, relocated to Maggie Valley in February and has been enjoying living in the beautiful mountains.

“Maggie Valley is too pretty not to be in,” Lunnedorg said. “You wake up every morning to these mountains. And the people here are very friendly.”

Cool Gifts A 2 Z sells a lot of unique gifts such as letter art, salt lamps and name-engraved rings.

Lunnedorg said business is slow, but he’s expecting it to pick up in June and be steady through October.

One of the busiest businesses in the plaza is Justice House Graphics.

Owner Shelia Justice said she has been busy creating all the signs for the plaza in addition to completing a sign for a new business coming to the Waynesville Plaza Shopping Center — Jack the Dipper.

“We’re picking up things left and right,” Justice said.

One challenge has been the visibility of the shop. Justice House Graphics is located in Suite 6 inside the plaza.

“A lot of people don’t know we’re in here,” Justice said. “There’s about five businesses inside here without any kind of frontage.”

Visibilty has also been a struggle for Sandie Hoffman and Linda Evans who co-own Buy Word of Mouth, a repurposing store.

Buy Word of Mouth offers all types of repurposed items, including used furniture, antiques, ceramics, jewelry and some popular items like angels and sequin hats.

“All in all, for somebody that’s new, I think it’s going great,” said Paulette Harper, a consigner at Buy Word of Mouth. “I think it’s going slowly — but locals are starting to say, ‘Oh, you’re there.’”

“We came here because we visited Maggie Valley and we fell in love with it,” Hoffman said. “We thought we’d come here and do something fun to help rebuild (Maggie Valley.) We’ve heard it’s slow here, so we’d like to help it get going again.”

Other businesses located in the Maggie Valley Town Center include The White Pickett Fence Antique and Collectible Mall, Ma Belle’s Smoke Shop, Maggie Valley Computer Repair, Something Different, WNC Overstock Shop, Forget Me Not Children’s Apparel, Pat’s Hair Salon, Troys Handyman Service among others.

Maggie Valley Town Center is located at 2495 Soco Road.