Cultivating Community Connections with a Focus on Healthy Living and Healthy Lifestyle
Residing right in the heart of the Hudson Valley is the Jefferson Valley Mall. Since 1983, this premier shopping destination has grown to become a community center filled with activities, events, and resources. The Jefferson Valley Mall is reinventing itself and is cultivating this center into a multipurpose, community hub with a focus on healthy living and healthy lifestyle.
The new mindset is to let go of the word “mall” and completely reshape the way we look at the center. “Our retail stores are always going to be of utmost importance to us but we are transforming the center by infusing energy and events in the common areas,” explains General Manager, Alexa O’Rourke. “From our micro team here at the center all the way up to our Washington Prime Group Corporate Office in Columbus, we are opening relationships with the community.”
Non-profit organizations, businesses, community groups, and individuals are holding meetings, workshops, events, and more by using the center’s open spaces. Through these partnerships, the center is providing free programs for the community at no cost to the organizers for the use of the facility. “We want to continue to support the nonprofits that are in and around this area by aiding them in their fundraising efforts,” states O’Rourke, “by using our open spaces they have an outward facing presence. We have community members walking by and learning about these organizations because of their project, event, or program is at the center.” It is community outreach at its finest.
Businesses are taking advantage of the new community areas as well. The Northern Westchester Toastmasters meets on the 2nd and 4th Wednesday of the month at 7:00 pm in the Community Room near the Food Court. The “HUB” is a location where people can sit down and plug in. Home-based business owners can come out of their houses to work in an area with other people. The area creates the opportunity for a genuine synergistic connection with the person working next to them. Although it is conducive to businesses, the HUB is open to anyone.
Washington Prime’s CEO Lou Conforti, supports the idea of this localized organic movement. Washington Prime has over 100 properties across the United States and they have developed these popular and well-received community centers. At the Jefferson Valley location, they are taking the rich history of the community, including stories and memories, while continuing to provide a variety of retail establishments including some wonderful food options such as Home Pie Signature Pizza, Put Some Meat On Your Bones food truck and the elegant Stone Rose Steakhouse.
Another trajectory is their movement is providing healthy living and healthy lifestyle options. Orangetheory just opened in December of 2018. Orangetheory is a 1-hour, full body workout, focused on training, endurance, strength, and power. In the spring, Footbik will be opening right next to Orangetheory . Footbik is a soccer center for early development and will be coordinating times with Orangetheory to provide a convenient schedule for both parents and kids to exercise and connect. 24 Hour Fitness will be moving into the lower level of the current Sears location. Continuing the theme of developing a lifestyle and holistic center, different options will be available to fit everyone’s needs and styles. The staff is breathing new life into the Mall Walking Program. Floor decals help people see how far they have gone while providing encouragement. Especially this time of year, you can come to the center and get healthy in many ways without having to worry about the cold or inclement weather.
The center is infusing free events called Daily Drumbeats. These free offerings include Monday science camps, Tuesday yoga classes, Wednesday AppleMoms HV craft and story time, Thursday Coffee with Cher for business professionals, and live bands on Friday and Saturday night.
The center is shining a light on personal passions - whatever they may be. For example, in the spring, they will hold its second ValleyCon event which will feature multiple video game tournaments, meet and greet and panel discussions with celebrity guests, free movie viewings, tons of different vendors from the world of comics, gaming, anime, movies, a cosplay competition, and so much more!!
The center is establishing partnerships with businesses such as Peekskill Brewery who had a popup bar over the holidays. In October, over 3,000 people attended the Boo ‘N Brew Halloween Event. This February, pink themed cocktails from Peekskill Brewery will be features in Galentine’s Day Sip ‘N Shop celebration. People can enjoy fashion, food, complimentary paraffin hand treatments, live music from the Ford Piano, creative fun from Pizzazzles and more to be announced.
Another common area change is "The Yard" located just outside of Dick’s Sporting Goods. Fun games such as corn hole, ping-pong, and a huge connect four game - to name a few - can entertain families for FREE. On the second floor is the Book Nook, which has a leave-a-book, take-a-book concept in addition to games for children. There are many activities to keep kids engaged in the center’s climate controlled facility. All these features are adding color to the center and the public loves it!
They even have something for our 4-legged friends. DogSpots are doghouses located outside of the south main entrance, where your dog has a safe and comfortable place to stay while you're inside. Dog owners can check on their dog via a doghouse camera, monitor the temperature inside the insulated structure and track their remaining time.
More exciting plans are underway for 2019. HamletHub will be keeping our readers informed about all the new changes and offerings. You can like the Jefferson Valley Mall on Facebook at facebook.com/JeffersonValley and follow them on Twitter @JeffersonValley and Instagram @JeffersonValley.
Jefferson Valley Mall is open seven days a week; Monday - Saturday 10 a.m. – 9:30 p.m. and Sunday 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. For more information, please call (914) 245-4688 or visit www.jeffersonvalleymall.com.
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