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ROGERS, MN-Cabela’s Inc. will open its new 185,000 sf retail store here on Oct. 14, the company’s third in the state and 14th overall. The Sidney, NE-based outdoors sporting goods retailer says the new store, which is on 40 acres in this town about 35 miles from the Twin Cities, is larger and closer to the Twin Cities than its 150,000-sf store in Owatonna, MN, and its 59,000-sf store in East Grand Forks, MN.Cabela’s expects the Rogers store to draw more than six million visitors a year, which would make it the state’s second-largest tourist attraction, trailing only the Mall of America. That would eclipse its Owatonna store, which attracts 4.5 million visitors annually and ranks second, the company says.

“Construction is ahead of schedule,” says Gail Shore, a spokeswoman for the company. The general contractor on the project is Minneapolis-based Kraus-Anderson Construction Co. She says that the company has already hired nearly 500 employees for the store.

This store is near the well-traveled Interstate 94 and Highway 101 intersection, which serves as the gateway to the huge expanse of sporting opportunities in the middle and upper regions of the state. Thousands also pass through the area, which includes Mille Lacs and the Minnesota lake country, on their way to hunting, camping and fishing trips in Canada.

Also, Cabela’s recently scored a legal victory over one of its main competitors, Gander Mountain Co., based in St. Paul. A federal judge recently ruled that Gander cannot use its name or its distinctive, medallion logo to sell products through a catalog or online. That’s because Gander sold its direct-marketing business to rival Cabela’s nine years ago to when it was in financial trouble. The ruling could hinder Gander’s catalog and online business. Direct selling has been a major source of sales for Cabela’s.

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