Goodbye Kitty! Lollypop Gift, the Hello Kitty store, closes

All good things must come to an end -- but Lollypop Gift, the Hello Kitty store in the Denver Pavilions, seems to have come to a very abrupt end. And the reported reason for the store's closing is something many vendors can relate to: rotten mall parents using stores as daycare centers.

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The store opened just before Thanksgiving last year, right in advance of the holiday shopping season, and owners Troy Moore and Kenneth Chan said that the time looked right for merchandise all devoted to America's favorite mouth-less cat.

But now the space on the first floor of the Pavilions is empty. I couldn't reach Moore or Chan for comment, so I popped in to Claire's next door to see what I could find out. An employee there told me the owners were sick of parents dumping their kids off while they shopped elsewhere, and never made any purchases at Lollypop.

Ouch. I've worked retail at an indoor mall, and I'm all too familiar with ratty parents dropping their kids off and letting the mall act as babysitter. Abandoning offspring to the tender mercies of a shopping center doesn't seem like the greatest parenting strategy, but that's their problem (and, later, the problem of juvie officers).

Our problem is that Lollypop Gift didn't last, and now we'll have to return to buying our awesome Hello Kitty swag on the interwebz.

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