By TAWNA TURNER
The new Provo mall invites everyone aboard the Towne Centre’s Flagship to participate in one of the world’s largest ribbon cutting ceremonies.
The mall hosts its grand opening Oct. 28 with the ribbon cutting ceremony starting at 9:30 a.m. Governor Mike Leavitt will attend as well as Provo City’s mayor, Lewis Billings.
Three thousand feet of red ribbon will wrap around the perimeter of the audience. The mall’s marketing director, Cheryl Vause, says she hopes the crowd will be big enough to make a Guinness Book world record.
“It looks like we’re the first group in history,” she said.
The public is invited to bring their own scissors to participate in the event.
Just before the doors open at 10 a.m., an airplane will drop over 2,000 ping-pong balls on spectators gathered in the east parking area. The ping-pong balls will each be marked with a number or business name that corresponds to a prize.
Prizes can be redeemed at the Tropical Fish Island in the fish pond area from 10-1 and include a one-year free car lease.
Kristine Muelleck, 20, a junior from Fresno, Calif., majoring in psychology, wasn’t very excited about the grand opening until she heard about the prizes.
“I’m definitely going now. I want to catch a ping-pong ball and win a car,” she said.
A cruise for two will also be given away at the ribbon cutting ceremony. Entry forms must be turned into the box on stage by the time the ceremony starts. Carnival Cruise Lines is offering cruises to Nassau, Ensenada, Key West, and the Bahamas. The mall will continue giving away cruises over the next eleven days.
JC Penney store manager, Ron Rhoads, said he was looking forward to the opening ceremony.
“We’re very anxious to get the mall open … We do expect the the mall to generate a lot of traffic from north Utah County which hasn’t come down before,” Rhoads said.
The theme for the opening is “Set Sale With Us” and BYU students have been hard at work building the fifteen-foot-long ship for the ceremony’s back drop.
The Construction Management Club is working on the project to raise money for their national conference.
Vause said the mall will open at 72 percent capacity and the first 5,000 shoppers will be given gift bags full of coupons and merchandise. The new mall houses over 100 stores including the only Disney Store south of the point of the mountain until Las Vegas.
Shopping isn’t the only attraction at the Provo Towne Center. The mall offers a variety of features. Two restaurants, Regganios and The Cheese Cake Company, provide fine dining while the food court offers eight restaurant options for shoppers on the go. In June 1999, the mall’s 16-theater movie complex will be completed.
Following the grand opening, the mall will host activities and give away cash prizes for the next 1l days.