A Toys“R”Us Express store opened Oct. 15 at Tracy Prime Outlets, 1005 E. Pescadero Ave., just in time for holiday shopping.
A spokeswoman for Toys“R”Us said the company opened 600 Toys“R”Us Express stores throughout the United States this year in malls and shopping centers as a way to give toy buyers the opportunity for “one-stop shopping” in scaled-down versions of the big Toys“R”Us and Babies“R”Us box stores.
Tracy’s Toys“R”Us Express may be temporary, however. Last year, Toys“R”Us opened 90 express stores for the holidays, and only about 30 of them stayed open through 2010. It is uncertain how many of the 600 stores this year will stay open past January 2011.
Regardless of whether the Toys“R”Us Express in Tracy will remain open in 2011, the spokeswoman said all purchases will be backed by the usual Toys“R”Us name and guarantee. If necessary, returns can be made at any permanent Toys“R”Us or Babies“R”Us store.
Baskin-Robbins back with new owner
A new Baskin-Robbins celebrated its grand opening Saturday, Oct. 16, with 31-cent scoops, face painting, balloons, a new owner and a fresh look.
Baskin-Robbins opened for business in the same place it was before, at 965 S. Tracy Blvd., about six months after the previous owner closed down.
New owner Kash Kandola said the store is newly remodeled. The store will still sell scoops of ice cream, but management hopes to also focus on ice cream cakes. Baskin-Robbins makes its cakes in-house and can make a custom cake creation with 24 hours notice. Pre-made cakes are also available immediately.
New Italian restaurant to open on 11th Street
Mike Latorre is cleaning, remodeling and teaching newly hired cooks his recipes — all in preparation to open a new restaurant in the old Amore’s Restaurant location at 130 W. 11th St.
The new Gino’s Italian Restaurant may open in a few weeks, though remodeling work on the two-story dining area, kitchen and bar — which Latorre refers to as a “facelift” for the restaurant — makes a definitive opening date difficult to pin down.
Latorre says his eatery will impress hungry patrons with its ambiance, food quality, service and pricing.
New E-Gallery and Performance Annex to have ‘soft’ opening
A new performing arts center will be open to the public tonight and Saturday, Oct. 30, for coffee as well as haunting storytelling and performances.
Four different casts from E-Company, a group of performers who are part of E-Academy for the Performing Arts, will perform Edgar Allen Poe’s one-act play, “The Cask of Amontillado,” each night. A separate area of the performance annex will hold readings of Poe’s short story, “The Raven.”
Halloween-themed art will also be on display until Nov. 19.
E-Gallery is at 729 Central Ave., right next to the Grand Theatre Center for the Arts. A grand opening is planned for Nov. 4.
Dandy’s Dog Diner to close
A 1950’s-style diner at 549 W. Clover Road, Dandy’s Dogs, will close its doors today after three years in business.
Dandy’s Dogs — with a second location in Livermore — serves hot dogs, hamburgers and other diner-style food. The Tracy location was robbed in February.
Decadent Pets changes owners, location
Decadent Pets is under new ownership, but store employees say this grooming spa for pets will still offer the same services as before.
On Sept. 1, new owner Carol Bellicitti moved the spa — which offers grooming services for dogs and cats — to 618 N. Central Ave. from its former East Street location.