Apple Store Opens in Buffalo

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Date: Friday, November 23rd, 2001, 12:46
Category: Archive

We had read in a number of places that the Apple Store in the Walden Galleria, in Buffalo NY, would be opening on Friday Nov. 23. So being the geek that I am, I mentioned to my daughters, (21 & 17) that I was thinking of going to it, even though it was at 8:00 am and Buffalo is about 2 hours and a border from our home in Toronto, Canada. My kids have grown up with Macs, we got our first, a Plus, in 1985. When they heard that I was going, they demanded that I take them with me.


We had read in a number of places that the Apple Store in the Walden Galleria, in Buffalo NY, would be opening on Friday Nov. 23. So being the geek that I am, I mentioned to my daughters, (21 & 17) that I was thinking of going to it, even though it was at 8:00 am and Buffalo is about 2 hours and a border from our home in Toronto, Canada. My kids have grown up with Macs, we got our first, a Plus, in 1985. When they heard that I was going, they demanded that I take them with me.

We awoke at 4:45 am, and got out of the house by 5:15. Down the QEW we drove, reaching the US border as the sun came up. Since September 11, crossing the Canada/US border has been a bit tougher. It usually includes opening the trunk, a whole bunch more questions and more. The border guard asked us what our citizenship was, and the purpose of our visit. “Canadian” and “Apple Store opening”!

We got a good laugh from the 2 guards, and a “Have a nice day”! Easiest crossing in the past 2 1/2 months. We stopped at Krispy Kreme for breakfast (not in Canada – yet) and got to the Galleria around 7:30 am. Being Canadian, we did not realize what the day after Thanksgiving was. The parking lot was full! We entered the mall through JC Penny, got the free Mickey Mouse snow dome they were giving out, and proceeded to the lineup for the Apple store opening.

The Apple store staff were working the line-up with their iPods, TiBooks and digital video, while the line grew and grew. Finally, at the stroke of 8:00 am, the doors opened. As we got closer to the entrance, we heard what sounded like applause. The entire staff had formed lines on both sides of the door and were applauding and high fiving the assembled masses.

The store is very cool and modern looking, much like a GAP. In addition to every conceivable Apple product, they had at least 10 different models of cameras, all kinds of PDAs, MP3 players and tons of software and books. The back of the store has a large projection TV, and iTunes was providing the video. The music was loud enough that there were a couple of guys dancing – it was almost like a commercial I’ve seen – and the store rapidly filled to overflowing. People were buying stuff; I saw a TiBook and a raft of software being sold in the first few minutes.

It will be much better when the newness wears off, and there are less people around, though as a stockholder, I hope it stays this busy forever. On the way back home, US Customs now checks you out as you leave the USA. When the border guard asked where we were, she was surprised to hear about the store opening and said she would be going over to check it out. The Canadian border guard was as surly as usual, and made us feel right at home. (Alcohol or tobacco? buy anything? are you lying to me? show me your id.)

Anyway we were home before noon with our two dozen Krispy Kremes and our T-shirts. My young one got dropped off for afternoon classes – no holiday here – with a good story to tell. Now, when my wife makes a shopping tour of Buffalo, there will be at least one store I won’t mind being in.

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