Brenham celebrates its first Academy as the city continues to grow

The new location continues its celebrations until Sunday with numerous events such as special appearances
KBTX News 3 at Six(Recurring)
Published: Sep. 16, 2023 at 6:54 PM CDT
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BRENHAM, Texas (KBTX) - A grand opening celebration is being held this weekend for one of Brenham’s newest stores, Academy Sports and Outdoors.

This is the city’s first Academy and it is located in Brenham’s Market Square at 1041 Nolan Street. The new location continues its celebrations until Sunday with numerous events such as special appearances by Food Network star and former pro football player Eddie Jackson, the Brenham High School cheer team, drumline, and mascot as well as exclusive deals and giveaways. Customers will even have an opportunity to take a photo with the Astros 2022 World Series trophy on Saturday.

The store has already become a hit for residents who came out despite heavy rain. Academy’s parking lot was full and customers continued to pour in.

“We have just been waiting to have a store like this in the area and especially now that fishing season is coming up and everything and we’re finishing up with summer we’re going to be coming here a lot to get finishing gear,” said Brenham resident and customer, Charlie Vardman.

For the city of Brenham, Academy is more than just a new store, it’s another sign that the city is continuing to grow, Brenham Mayor Atwood Kenjura said.

“Our budget, a good part of it, is sales tax from tourism and retail outlets,” Kenjura said. “With Academy, will come other stores. Chick-fil-A mentioned they wanted to be a partner in this. With those two in this center, we look for bigger and better things to happen.”

Kenjura said the growth over the past few years has been phenomenal and a bunch of new homes have been built in the area. As the city continues to expand, Kenjura says the biggest challenge will be keeping up with infrastructure and making sure Brenham remains Brenham.

“We think we can do it, we got the right people in place we got great staff. The city manager is excellent, been here 15-20 years and everybody is on board,” Kenjura said. “We’re going to strive very very hard to maintain that image that we’ve had as a small town friendly store.”

Even though Brenham is growing larger with more stores and services, Vardman said it still feels like home.

“Definitely see a lot of the population coming through and it’s really exciting to see a small town get a little bit bigger but still have that small-town feel,” Vardman said.

The shopping center still has room for 26 more retail outlets and there will be two hotels on the property, Kenjura said.

“I think once you get 26 more, hopefully mom-and-pop type retail stores, that will be a big plus,” Kenjura said. “Across the street at the other shopping center Burlington was just announced and Ulta Beauty will be the next two that will come on board.”

During the weekend celebration period the first 150 people in line when the store opens, will win gift cards, there will be in-store treasure hunts, a gift with an Academy Credit Card application, and free laser engraving with the purchase of a Magellan Outdoors brand tumbler.

“The community has been fantastic,” James Boyer, store director at Brenham’s Academy. “We’re here to help people have fun out there through our great assortment and our great pricing and we’re excited to be here. I think it bridges a gap and serves a need for the community.”