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Modell’s Sporting Goods

The Centereach store on Middle Country Road promotes clearance sales on March 13. Photo by Heidi Sutton
All stores on Long Island to close

Modell’s Sporting Goods, the nation’s  oldest, family-owned and operated retailer of sporting goods, athletic footwear and active apparel is going out of business.

Fourth-generation owner Mitchell Modell made the announcement last Wednesday after filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection and allowing for the liquidation of all of its 153 stores located in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia and Washington, DC. beginning March 13. 

Founded in 1889 by Morris A. Modell, the first Modell’s store was located on Cortlandt Street in lower Manhattan  according to the company’s website.

The retailer known for its “Gotta Go to Mo’s” ad slogan joins several other sporting goods giants including Sports Authority to shutter in recent years as online retail hurt brick-and -mortar sales.

The decision will affect 14 stores on Long Island including Rocky Point, Shirley, Centereach, Bohemia, Commack, Bay Shore and Huntington Station. The Riverhead and Farmingdale locations were closed last year.

“While we achieved some success, in partnership with our landlords and vendors, it was not enough to avoid a bankruptcy filing amid an extremely challenging environment for retailers,” Modell said in a statement on March 11. 

“This is certainly not the outcome I wanted, and it is one of the most difficult days of my life … but I believe liquidation provides the greatest recovery for our creditors,” he added. The stores began liquidation sales on March 13. 

Although the retailer did not announce it’s last day, Modell’s website states that online sales will continue during the process; Modell’s gift cards, MVP awards and returns with a receipt will be accepted through April 15; the Modell’s credit card and the Modell’s Visa card will no longer be accepted; and competitor’s coupons will no longer be honored.