LACROSSE STORE TAKES AIM AT BROAD STREET

Lacrosse Unlimited plans to take the space at far right in the building above, formerly tenanted by Hip & Humble Home.  (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Rcsm2_010508A fast-growing, family-owned chain of stores specializing in gear for lacrosse players plans to open a shop in Red Bank.

David DeSimone, an executive with Lacrosse Unlimited, tells redbankgreen‘s Retail Churn the company has leased the 2,250-square-foot storefront at 58 Broad Street, most recently occupied by Hip & Humble Home, and hopes to be open by early December.

The lease would appear to stabilize a stretch of four adjoining storefronts that has seen more than its share of churn in recent years.

Based in Hauppauge, New York and founded by DeSimone’s lacrosse-loving uncle and a friend in 1990, Lacrosse Unlimited has 31 stores from Massachusetts to Virginia. The other New Jersey locations are in Madison, Montclair, Princeton and Ridgewood.

Though the company prefers strip malls for the parking, and the Broad Street has no spaces either out front or in back, DeSimone said Lacrosse Unlimited is taking a chance on Red Bank because of the area’s demographic profile and the local popularity of the sport.

“We check into youth teams, middle school, high school, club and traveling teams,” he said. As it has elsewhere, the company expects to siphon off business from big-box sports retailers such as Sports Authority and Dick’s Sporting Goods with its specialized approach, extensive inventory and customer service based on knowledge of the game, DeSimone said.

The lease rounds out a quartet of street-level commitments, three of them recent, in the building, which Michael Morgan bought for $1.5 million in 2011 $2.75 million in 2005 through Morco LLC.

Just this week, “punk-rock wedding” shooter John Arcara Photography signaled its move into one of the spaces, from an office just upstairs, by hanging its sign. The studio replaces children’s clothing retailer T. Berry Square, which closed in May.

Behind a boarded-over entry, construction work has been underway in another of the spots, a long-vacant space where the Subway sandwich chain has approvals for what it says will be a 28-seat cafe-style eatery.

Longtime tenant Red Bank Nail Salon rounds out the foursome.