South Plains Mall Stores From 50 Years Ago
I imagine when the South Plains Mall opened that it hit with the force of a nuclear bomb.
The mall opened in 1972 and I didn't arrive on the South Plains until 1979, but I was surprised by how many of the original stores I remembered. All of the following were part of the mall's opening in 1972 and still a thing when I arrived here in 79-80.
The Fireplace Store
Wicks N' Sticks
The Brittany Restaurant
Coach House Gifts
The General Nutrition Center
Margo's La Mode
Bonnet Pet Center
There is an exhaustive list of all of the South Plains Mall stores from 1972 right here.
It's interesting that a lot of us have our "mall years." I'm not saying the South Plains Mall is not incredibly engaging, thriving and fun to visit, but everyone seems to have a time in their life when they made mall visits frequently. (You may still do it to this day.)
For me as a transplant, the South Plains Mall was a sign of civilization. Driving up from Brownfield at the time it was the first big business you saw coming in off the Brownfield Highway, and man was it good to see. Things like Baskin-Robbins, Waldenbooks, Swiss Colony, and, at the time, Orange Julius made me feel a bit more connected to the world.
The South Plains Mall has experienced a lot of turnover and change, but I don't think that's a 'mall thing.' It's more about how businesses come and go in general. I would say that if I could bring back one business it would have to be The Brittany. Maybe it was a time and place kind of thing, but I loved those burgers.