Fleet Feet Sports leaving Village Shops at the end of February

Fleet Feet Sports, which organized group runs and training programs, will close at the Village Shops in February. Photo via Facebook.
Fleet Feet Sports, which organized group runs and training programs, will close at the Village Shops in February. Photo via Facebook.

Fleet Feet Sports, the running store known for organizing community training programs, has become the third Village Shops tenant this month to announce it was leaving the center.

The store opened as UltraMax Sports back in 2012, but transitioned to a Fleet Feet location in the summer of 2015. Despite the name change, the store’s offerings — high-end running shoes and apparel with high customer service — remained largely steady, as did much of the staff.

As such, word of the closure was disheartening to Fleet Feet fit specialist Kara Kowalik, who has been with the store for five years. Kowalik said store ownership decided the costs were too high to justify entering a new five-year lease.

“It’s just too much to renew,” she said.

Fleet Feet will remain open at the center through the end of its lease in February. The store’s departure means GRI Prairie Village, a subsidiary of First Washington Realty, will be looking for new tenants for three of the center’s largest spaces. Bruce Smith Drugs and Tiffany Town, two of the center’s longest-running operations, announced earlier this month that they were closing.

Kowalik said she was sorry to see the shoe store leaving the active Prairie Village community.

“We love the community and we wish we could stay here,” she said. “There is a need for a running store like this here. It’s such a physically active area.”