Is there a Samantha, Felicia or Molly in your daughter's life? If so, it's almost certain you'll be making the trek to American Girl Place this summer, when Fairfax County becomes home to a venue that will have area girls jumping up and down.
The countdown is on for the grand opening of American Girl Place on Saturday, June 18th at Tysons Corner Center in McLean. The 23,000-square foot store geared to girls ages 3-12, will feature dolls and books for sale, as well as a doll hair salon ($10-$20 for styling) and a restaurant, "The Bistro." The store is located right next to Bloomingdales.
If you plan to go to the grand opening on Saturday, June 18th, here's what to expect:
- Entertainment (Music)
- Free craft activities
- Drawings for dolls
- Each girl under age 14 will receive a free gift
Seating 110 (not including extra seats for dolls), The Bistro will be located on the store's second floor, serving lunch and dinner and desserts such as root-beer floats and banana splits. Beer, wine and champagne will be on the menu for grown-ups.
Girls will be able to create T-shirts for their dolls in the "Creativi-Tees" boutique and purchase"dress like your doll" clothing.
The venue will likely be a popular spot for birthday parties for girls ages 3 and older. The store will offer two packages, one starting at $30 per guest, the other at $47 per guest.
Special savings are available to tour groups, school field trips and Girl Scout troops.
American Girl dolls include "baby dolls" for the younger set, as well as 18-inch $100 dolls that represent a period in American history. Each doll is named and comes with its own historically accurate wardrobe and accessories, as well as books and in some cases DVDs. Fans can keep up with all things American Girl by subscribing to its magazine.
American Girl was started in 1986 in Middleton, WI, by Pleasant T. Rowland, a former teacher and educational book publisher. She was inspired to create the dolls and books after a trip in 1985 to Williamsburg. She wanted to figure out a way to make its history come alive for young girls and started her business in Wisconsin. Her idea was wildly successful, selling dolls and books by mail-order catalog. She sold the business to Mattel in 1996 for $700 million.
The 18-inch dolls don't come cheap. Each one is priced at $100. Due to their educational value and quality construction, parents are willing to pay the price.
Other American Girl stores are located in New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, Kansas City, Atlanta, Minneapolis and Denver. Another new store is also opening in Seattle.
To make dining or birthday party reservations, go online or call (877) 247-5223.