An outdoor sports clothing retailer that has catered to the Broadway commercial district for the past quarter century will be closing its doors later this month.
That news came on Monday afternoon in an email from the owners of Trailblazer New Haven, which has operated out of a retail storefront at 296 Elm St. for the past 23 years.
The owners write that, despite last year being the company’s “best year ever,” they have decided to end their lease and will be closing shop on May 28. The owners, who run the new Patagonia franchise across the street on Broadway, said they plan to keep that business going.
L.L. Bean plans to open a two-story retail outlet this summer next to the Trailblazer space.
Read the full email announcement below.
It is with a heavy heart that we must relay the news that we will not be renewing our Trailblazer lease in New Haven. Our final day will be Monday, May 28th. This decision was not made lightly and is in no way a reflection of your consistent loyalty and support. 296 Elm Street was our first location; it is precious to us and there are innumerable memories jam packed within its four walls.
One cold January morning, twenty-three years ago, we opened our doors to little fanfare and fewer sales. Slowly but surely people peeked in, shared their stories and spent time with us. Over the years those simple conversations developed into block parties, pint nights, guest speakers and most importantly, thousands of shared experiences.
We are devoted to New Haven. Denali will continue to support local nonprofits, host the Banff Mountain Film Festival at the Shubert, and Run the Gauntlet at East Rock Park. New Haven is our birthplace and we will remain faithful to you and our community.
Thanks to you and your support, last year was our best year ever. University Properties was vocal in their desire for Trailblazer to remain in its current location; unfortunately we could not find a responsible path forward and made the very difficult decision to not renew our lease.
Our Patagonia New Haven location is not going anywhere and we would love for you to come by to say hello. The Branford store will be refurbished in June and we will open a new location in Providence, RI this August. We welcome you to visit us in any of our other locations in Branford, Trumbull, Old Saybrook, Uncasville or Wakefield, RI.
We will continue to host activities to inspire and connect our outdoor family, build memories and reinvest our proceeds into our local communities. This will always include New Haven.
Chris Howe, Todd Raskin & Chris Mejias