The Waynesboro Gordmans location only opened its doors to customers for 24 days in early March before its parent company, Stage Stores, Inc., said it was temporarily closing all locations in response to COVID-19.

The store reopened on Friday advertising a closing sale.

The store may be forced to close permanently after Stage Stores announced last week it had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. That announcement affects 738 department stores in small towns and rural areas across 42 states — including Waynesboro.

Stage Stores is a department store company specializing in discounted brand name apparel, accessories, cosmetics, footwear and housewares. The Houston company also operates Peebles, Palais Royal, Bealls and Goody’s stores.

Stage Stores originally had plans to convert all Peebles locations to Gordmans by the end of the third quarter. In Waynesboro, the former Peebles in Willow Oak Plaza switched to Gordmans on March 3. The COVID-19 pandemic forced Stage Stores to close all locations on March 27.

Along with 25 other Virginia locations, Waynesboro Gordmans reopened Friday with “even bigger deals and smaller prices.” All merchandise is on sale, and existing gift cards will be honored for the next 30 days.

In a press release last week, the retailer said it will “simultaneously solicit bids for a going concern sale of the business or any of its assets and initiate an orderly wind-down of operations.”

The company has plans to end the wind-down of operations at certain locations if a “viable” bid is received.

“This is a very difficult announcement, and it was a decision that we reached only after exhausting every possible alternative,” President and CEO of Stages Stores Michael Glazer said in a statement.

Glazer also said in his statement that despite the company taking “significant steps” to strengthen its finances, “the increasingly challenging market environment was exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Reporter

Logan Bogert is a reporter for The News Virginian in Waynesboro, Virginia. She can be reached at lbogert@newsvirginian.com or (540) 932-3562. Follow Logan on Twitter at @Logan_Bogert.

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