On a scale from one to disappointed, I felt a little let down when I first moved to St. George and realized the serious lack of important shopping outlets in the area.
One store that I found particularly disturbing to be without, as I am sure many girls do, is Victoria’s Secret.
No five-for-$20 panty deals? No high quality bras that encourage the twins to sit side-by-side and look twice their normal size? No pheromone filled, male-enticing aromas? What is a girl to do?
I heard rumors that the reason Victoria’s Secret was not to be found in St. George was because the community and local government would not allow it due to the nature of its merchandise. This didn’t seem very fair, so I decided to look into it and set the record straight.
Now, I have always been a little disgruntled with the sheltered St. George community.
When Chili’s Bar and Grill wanted to expand to the area, the company was asked to remove “bar” from the title. The thought of having a restaurant in St. George openly advertise that it is a bar was appalling to some of the sweet, sheltered patrons of the city.
But is this the reason there isn’t a Vicky’s?
According to both the mayor and the city spokesperson, the answer is not just, “No.” It’s, “Heck no.”
“The city can only deny a business a building license if they don’t meet the requirements of the law for where they want to build,” Mayor Dan McArthur said. “Just because somebody doesn’t want them here doesn’t mean they can’t be here.”
When I asked Marc Mortensen, assistant to the city manager, if the city had ever been approached by Victoria’s Secret about building in the area, he said they had not. He also said that if they wanted to locate here it wouldn’t be a difficult process at all.
“We’d be thrilled to have a Victoria’s Secret here,” Mortensen said. “The city doesn’t have the right to deny a lingerie store, and I have not heard one person say that they do not want a Victoria’s Secret here.”
Thanks Marc, I too would be thrilled to have one here. Unfortunately, I am assuming there are many in our little town who would not be so enthusiastic.
To those people, I say this: St. George is a college town. It is going to become more of a college town as DSC grows. The city is going to have to start catering to a different and possibly more open-minded demographic.
I know the heritage and culture here runs as deep as the cracks in the red rocks around us. I know there are some of you who are afraid bars and lingerie stores might tarnish the city’s “golden boy” reputation. But this is not a real-life rendition of “Footloose,” and if the area wants to dance its way into a structure better suited for a broader demographic, by golly its gonna do it!
For now, I suppose the real question is: Will we ever get a Victoria’s Secret in the area? One can only hope. At least we know that the city won’t say, “No.”