NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Opry Mills reopened its doors today as the largest outlet, value retail, dining and entertainment destination in Tennessee. The Tennessee-inspired Grand Reopening kicked off with an official ribbon cutting ceremony and featured a series of fashion, lifestyle, and musical events that will continue running through early May.

Pam Tillis sang the National Anthem after a lead-in by Tennessee State University's Aristocrat of Bands, and Nashville Mayor Karl Dean join several other officials on stage for the Ribbon Cutting Ceremony.

"Opry Mills is a key part of the city's success," he said. "The jobs it creates are important to the citizens. The sales tax generated here supports our schools and other important functions. To Simon Property and all the merchants here, thank you!"

“For nearly two years, local residents and Nashville visitors looking to enjoy the true Music City experience have been eagerly awaiting the return of Opry Mills,” said president of the Mills Gregg Goodman, prior to the reopening. “Opry Mills is coming back strong with an impressive list of stores, restaurants and entertainment venues, enhancing the local economy through new job creation and increased tourism.”

Returning favorites join new names on the store roster, with such well known brands as Coach Factory Store, Michael Kors, Banana Republic Factory Store, G by Guess, Gap Outlet, and XXI Forever.   Plus, Aquarium Restaurant, Dave & Buster’s, and Rainforest Café return to add to the shopping experience.

The celebration will continue with a series of interactive and family fun events throughout the following five-week period, which will include:

  • Opry Mills Next Big Star®: Up and coming musical talent acts will vie for the chance to perform at Opry Mills during the Grand Reopening celebration, including its Southern Nights finale on May 5.
  • Easter Sunday: Opry Mills will continue the Grand Reopening momentum with special holiday hours of 12:00 to 6:00 p.m.
  • Grand Reopening Super Sale Weekend April 13 - 15: Guests will be able to take advantage of even deeper discounts from popular participating retailers.
  • Tennessee Treasures Opening Celebration April 28 - 29: Children of all ages will enjoy the unveiling of Opry Mills’ new Tennessee Treasures play area and the return of the Simon Kidgits Club. The weekend will also feature family-friendly entertainment on the Entertainment Stage.
  • Grand Reopening Finale May 4 – 6: Beginning Friday, May 4, shoppers can experience a series of interactive style events and retailer programming, plus fashion shows and live entertainment on the Entertainment Stage and throughout the property. The reopening celebration concludes on May 5 with a free grand finale concert featuring the winner of Opry Mills Next Big Star® talent search opening for country music superstar Josh Turner. The concert will culminate with a spectacular fireworks display. Attendees are encouraged to bring canned goods as a donation to Second Harvest Food Bank. 

This article has been republished from Out & About Nashville, and was part of a series of first-person pieces written by the late Bobbi Williams.

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