Modell’s in Riverhead to close

Modell’s Sporting Goods is closing its Riverhead store.

Signs hung in the window advertise “drastic markdowns,” on merchandise, including clothing and athletic equipment. 

The sports outfitter is located in the same block of retailers including Best Buy and Bed Bath & Beyond.

A store employee said Monday that the store would be open through the holidays and is expected to close in January. He declined to provide additional information.

A spokesperson for the company did not immediately return a phone call seeking comment Monday.

Modell’s opened in Riverhead in 2003 as part of the 50-acre Riverhead Centre shopping plaza.

The store is the latest casualty on Route 58 — Kmart and Toys R Us also announced closures this year — and the second vacancy in the shopping center. A former Lane Bryant clothing store to the west of Modell’s has been empty for about two years. Earlier this year, the vacant 4,921 square-foot storefront was pitched as a restaurant.

Founded in 1889, the first Modell’s store was located in lower Manhattan. Four generations of the Modell family developed the business into a chain of around 150 retail stores throughout the Northeast, including at least a dozen on Long Island.

As the sporting goods store faces mounting pressure from rival retailers and online shopping, several stores in New Jersey and Massachusetts have announced closings in recent months.

It’s unclear if additional stores on Long Island will close.

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Photo caption: Modell’s on Route 58 will close next year. (Tara Smith photo)