BRIDAL SHOP Wedding World sets dress pickup days
The store is expected to be open for at least two days.
By JOHN W. GOODWIN JR.
VINDICATOR STAFF WRITER
BOARDMAN -- Courtney Roth of Canfield is set to be married in less than two weeks and she hopes to have all her bridesmaids' dresses by then.
Roth said she took two dresses to Wedding World on U.S. Route 224 across from the Southern Park Mall for alterations. Now the store is closed and the dresses were still inside as of Monday night.
Wedding World filed for bankruptcy protection and closed all of its stores with some customers' merchandise yet to be picked up. The chain has more than 20 stores, most of them in Pennsylvania. The Boardman store was expected to be open Monday, but it remained closed all day.
Stanley Levine, lawyer for Wedding World, said the business planned to open at noon today and will be open Wednesday and possibly Thursday if more merchandise remains.
"I think most people will come in these two days," he said. "There were a lot of people there yesterday, so it is unfortunate that we could not process any orders then, but it just didn't work out."
Levine said no orders were processed because employees were afraid to open the shop. He said some customers made threats of violence against the business as the customers waited in the parking lot.
Levine said the company had arranged for police escorts and were expected to open under police supervision today. Boardman police said off-duty officers would be on hand at the business for several hours.
Levine said employees have experienced their own inconveniences: They haven't been paid for three weeks. He said they will receive immediate compensation for the two or three days the store is expected to be open, and will receive their final paychecks sometime in the future.
Just want dresses
Many of those waiting in the store's parking lot said they did not have any violent intentions; they just wanted the dresses that would make their wedding day complete.
Erin Brown of Portage County attended a bridal show at the mall in January but didn't find anything she liked.
She eyed Wedding World on her way out of the mall parking lot and found the dress she had been looking for. She said Monday that she just wanted to take the dress home.
Brown said her wedding is not until July, but she does not have another $600 to spend on a dress and is hoping to pick up the dress she paid for sometime this week.
Both Roth's and Brown's dresses are paid in full. Levine said those with merchandise already paid for should be able to simply pick the items up.
Those with layaway balances must pay for the item in full before taking the dress.
Levine said customers should bring cash or a check because the company's credit card machine is not working.