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Paragon Outlets Ignites Livermore

Livermore welcomes new outlets center with grand opening celebration.

Margaret Sorensen first moved to Livermore in 1929.

The 3-year-old at the time was one of just under 3,000 residing in town, she said.

Today, the 86-year-old Sorensen is amazed at how far her once "little cow town" has come along.

"What a change," Sorensen said Thursday at the Paragon Outlets Livermore Valley grand opening. "This is just so awesome. I'm just sitting here in awe."

The new outlets center is the latest attraction to the Livermore Valley, which already boasts a deep wine country, a thriving downtown and a booming technology hub.

Livermore Mayor John Marchand says the outlets brings in more than 3,000 jobs to the area.

"It encourages people to shop local and keep dollars in their community," he said.

Shoppers arrive early

Livermore-resident Gerald Yano has been waiting for the opening since officials broke ground on the shopping center in August 2011.

Yano was one of many shoppers who headed to the outlets early Thursday morning. He plans to take advantage of the special sales offered at the grand opening.

"This is big for Livermore," he said smiling. "I can't wait."

C.J. Robinson of Antioch and Sondra Robinson of Dublin also arrived early and were one of the first people in line at the Nike outlet.

They started standing in line at around 8:30 a.m. to get a water bottle and gift card Nike was giving out to the first few hundred shoppers.

By 9:30 a.m. the line to the Nike store wrapped around the corner and had more than 150 people.

Lines also began to form at the nearby Coach store.

The outlets feature , just off Interstate 580.

Traffic, traffic and more traffic

Days before Thursday's grand opening officials warned of heavy traffic expected in the area. Patch readers on our Facebook page reported traffic to be grid locked on Interstate 580 and the new Jack London Boulevard extension in Livermore to be backed up.

A traffic collision near the El Charro Road exit on the freeway also contributed to the delays, according to the CHP.

Some said it took more than 30 minutes to travel from one exit to another on Interstate 580.

"It's horrible," a Patch reader said.

It took 90 minutes for Patch Regional Editor Kari Hulac to get to the outlets center from Pleasanton.

Others decided to give up, turn back around and plan a visit another day.

CHP also issued a traffic alert due to the huge delays. Details here.

Share your photos and experience

Share your pictures at the grand-opening events here by clicking on the "Upload Photos and Videos" button on this post. Tell us what you're most excited for at the grand opening and share your experience visiting the new shopping center in the comments section below.

Store list and schedule of events

View a store list in the attached document. Here's a rundown of the scheduled grand-opening events this weekend:

Thursday, Nov. 8: Open 10 a.m. to 11 p.m.

  • 10 a.m.: Champagne & Confetti Grand Opening Ceremony, near Food Court · 
  • 10 a.m.: Paragon Outlets Livermore Valley opens with limited-time offers, merchant giveaways, prize sweepstakes and entertainment
  • 5:00 to 8:00 p.m.: Diablo’s VIP Grand Opening Party, near Brooks Brothers Factory Store

Friday, Nov.9: Open 10 a.m. to midnight

  • Limited-time offers, merchant giveaways, prize sweepstakes and entertainment

Saturday, Nov. 10: Open 10 a.m. to midnight

  • Limited-time offers, merchant giveaways, prize sweepstakes and entertainment
  • 5:00 to 8:00 p.m.: Livermore Valley Winegrowers Association’s Sunset, Sip & Shop event

Sunday, Nov. 11: Open 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

  • Limited-time offers, merchant giveaways, prize sweepstakes and entertainment “Even before our grand opening shoppers have the opportunity to join our exclusive Privilege Club at www.paragonoutletsLV.com. Becoming a member entitles shoppers to a complimentary VIP Coupon Book worth hundreds of dollars in extra savings,” said Paragon Outlets Livermore Valley Assistant General Manager Dave Ackerman.  
MTOL November 13, 2012 at 06:56 PM
PS I am hoping to hear from someone who really knows what is going on here, rather than everyones speculations and/or worst fears... Thanks!
Shannon November 13, 2012 at 08:49 PM
I'm sad the outlet mall doesn't have a Lane Bryant outlet like every other outlet mall in existence. More stores that include people of every size would be awesome. I am not even really plus sized I just find some of their smaller things fit well.
Monika Harris November 13, 2012 at 09:33 PM
Hey Julia, I 110% agree with you on shopping and buying from locals , like the mom and pop stores...I grew up in Pleasanton/Livermore area and GOD how I long for a small , quaint , non -pretentious town/towns.....I'm a self employed person and I always go for the small businesses and hope they do the same when it comes to hiring my business......
Georgia Choate November 13, 2012 at 10:38 PM
I agree Julia. I just shopped at Target today. It's great when I need epsom salt or toothpaste, but I shop locally when I can. The Tri-Valley has a lot of locally owned businesses. For people who don't understand why we encourage others to shop locally, try www.indiebound.org. We're not shopping locally just to create a quaint and homey atmosphere. When you spend 100$ at a chain, only 43$ will stay in the communtiy. Shop at a mom-n-pop, and 68 of your dollars will stay in the community. After seeing so many people look for jobs for a long time, I'm most happy about those jobs created by Paragon. I don't like crowds. I don't like traffic, so I'm happy to wait a while to go see what it's like. And for those worried that it will always be this crowded, it may be February, but it will slow down.
Lisa Abbott November 15, 2012 at 03:08 AM
The mall is great but the food court is lacking. With high end stores it would of been nice to have seen some imagination when it came to the food.

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