Scottsdale Mall (Erskine Village); South Bend, Indiana

Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, IN

Located in north central Indiana about 90 miles east of Chicago, South Bend, Indiana is home to the legendary Notre Dame University and for almost a hundred years was also the home of the Studebaker auto empire.  In addition, South Bend is the anchor of the entire Michiana region, a 7-county area of north central Indiana and southwest Michigan containing over 800,000 people.  Today, South Bend’s population exceeds 100,000, and an intermodal transportation network featuring two cross country interstates (80 and 90) combined with interurban rail links to Chicago make South Bend an enviable location.

Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, INSouth Bend, along with its twin city to the east Mishawaka, share two main retail areas.  The largest and most dominant of these retail zones is located on the north and east sides of South Bend, extending into Mishawaka.  It features numerous strip malls, big box, restaurants, and the area’s only enclosed super-regional center, University Park Mall.  A secondary retail area is located on the south side of South Bend, located mostly along Ireland Road and S. Michigan Street, and it was centered around South Bend’s first regional enclosed mall, Scottsdale Mall.

Scottsdale Mall opened in 1971, anchored by Montgomery Ward, L.S. Ayres, and Ayr-Way, L.S. Ayres’s discount box.  Scottsdale Mall appealed to the entire Michiana region and as it was their first mall, it became extremely popular.  The two-level mall continued to be successful throughout the 1970s, as it had little to no competition in the area.

Then, in 1979, University Park Mall opened across town in Mishawaka, which not only established strong competition for Scottsdale Mall, but also shifted the entire region’s retail focus from south to northeast.  However, throughout the 1980s, Scottsdale Mall held its own against University Park, even as more retail and big box was opening near University Park and not on the south side of South Bend near Scottsdale Mall.  Also, in 1980, the Ayr-Way chain closed upon its sale to the Dayton-Hudson (Target) Corporation, and the Scottsdale Mall location reopened in 1981 as Target.

Scottsdale Mall LS Ayres in South Bend, INIn order to compete with the newer University Park Mall, and attract more retail to its side of town, Scottsdale Mall embarked on a multi-million dollar top to bottom renovation, which was complete in 1993.  The new development brought an early-90s, very colorful, pastel, rainbow-brite-threw-up-here vibe to the mall; but before this, Scottsdale was already tanking, and the LS Ayres store abruptly closed in January 1992 citing poor sales.  It would later reopen, but the 1992 closure cast a pall on the store, and on the mall itself, from which both would never recover.  By the late 1990s, the mall was once again tanking; vacancy rates were growing, and national chains began closing, being replaced by either local stores or nothing at all.  Meanwhile, fortunes on the other side of town were growing ever greater, as throughout the 90s more national chains and box strip opened in and around the vicinity of University Park Mall.

The final throws to the Scottsdale Mall dunk tank came in 2000, when L.S. Ayres announced they were closing (again), and Montgomery Ward announced they were going out of business at the end of the year.  Losing these two anchors proved devastating to Scottsdale Mall, and it never recovered.

Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, INBy 2003, only a handful or so of stores were left in the mall, along with Target and a popular movie theatre.  Unfortunately this was not enough to keep the mall afloat, and it was sold, closed, and promptly torn down in 2004; only Target was to remain at the site.  Interestingly, a lot of the mom-and-pop stores moved about 15 minutes east to Elkhart’s Concord Mall.  Also, unil the very end, the management was too lazy to update the directories, which still featured L.S. Ayres and Wards.

A short time after Scottsdale Mall became a pile of scrap metal and dust, a new strip-mall like development called Erskine Village began construction on the same site and opened in 2005.  The new development features TJMaxx, Kohls, Target, Petsmart, several restaurants, and a strip of outward facing smaller stores.  Erskine Village, not surprisingly, has been slow to get off the ground, and it certainly lacks the community and place-inspired memories an enclosed mall evokes.  However, I suppose if people wanted that they would have patronized Scottsdale.  Oh well.

We visited Scottsdale a few times before it got the axe; however, the pictures featured here are from a contributor and were taken in December 2003, a few months before the mall closed permanently.  For clarification, the ad for the TV series was up from Summer 1999 until the mall was torn down.  Feel free to leave your comments and experiences.

Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, IN Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, IN Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, IN

Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, IN Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, IN Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, IN

Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, IN Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, IN Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, IN

Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, IN Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, IN Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, IN

Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, IN Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, IN Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, IN

Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, IN Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, IN Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, IN

Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, IN Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, IN Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, IN

Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, IN Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, IN

66 Responses to “Scottsdale Mall (Erskine Village); South Bend, Indiana”

  1. Ouch! Too bad. It looks decent though, and an old Target isn’t the last to stay in most cases.

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    Chris Reply:

    i was i beleive 8 years old when they took it down and it was so fun to have, it was closed do to the lack of people, they needed better stores imo

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  2. Actually, I am assuming that the old Target was profitable, because Target built a new store in the power center that replaced the mall. In Microsoft Live Search Maps, the overview image still shows the former mall but the birds eye view shows the new big box center anchored by a new Target. One of the factors that likely contributed to the mall’s demise is the fact that University Park Mall is located within a few miles drive of Notre Dame, while Scottsdale Mall was located on the other side of downtown. Therefore, once UP was built, it stole the student traffic from Scottsdale.

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  3. That sucks, but the TV ad reminds me of this advertisement they have (or at least they still did a few months ago) in Meadow Glen Mall in Medford MA about conserving energy. One of the tips listed was to “make sure you turn off your VCR”.

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  4. I’m curious about the Ayr-Way stores. How many locations were there? Were any outside of Indiana? How many were in the works when Target bought them out? I have a theory that the Target In Normal IL was suppose to be Ayr-Way since the location opened in 1982, a decade before Target began building stores in the Chicago area. Don’t have any proof but it doesn’t sound far-fetched.

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  5. Chip, I found an Ayr-Way in Illinois, apparently the Target at Danville Village Mall in Danville (edge of Ill, close to Ind.) was once an Ayr-Way. After Target moved, it became Hobby Lobby (now closed) and a grocery store. I’ve also found evidence that the Target at Markland Mall in Kokomo was once an Ayr-Way. These are strange, as Ayr-Way usually were close to LS Ayres stores; Danville never had an LS Ayres and I don’t think Markland did either. Looks like South Bend was the farthest north the chain went.

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    Iris Reply:

    @Bobby….WOW!….haven’t thoght about Ayr-Way in a min!…then came ole Ventures!

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  6. Target took over almost all of the Ayr-Ways. They were not necessarily near existing Ayres’ stores. For example the one on 38th & Shadeland in Indy was no where near an Ayre’s branch. Ayres had a store in Merrillville, but I don’t think there was an Ayr-Way there. The small markets would have made more sense for them to develop becuase they could avoid the media costs of a big market and they would have faced a lot of comeptition if they’d gone into Cincinnati or Chicago.

    Ayres really did not do well under May management. They were more of a “Federated”-type store, closer to Lazarus than to May chains in terms of market segment, although Lazarus was not able to capitlize on this. OTOH, Ayres did a lousy job of stewardship over the former Pogue operation in Cincinnati.

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    STEVE Reply:

    @Rich, Ayr-Way did have a store near Cincinnati in Middletown, Ohio that became a Target. That store was replaced by a brand new one in a much better location around 1995. I have also read that Ayr-Way had stores in Louisville, Ky.

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  7. Funny thing that this mall was mentioned. I have a good friend that lives right across Ireland Rd. from where the mall was located. We ate on a few occasions in this mall at a place called Chick Fil A or something like that and I remember the last time I was in there it was getting pretty empty and quiet.

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  8. I believe Ayr-way was here in Champaign, IL as well. They were located on the westside of town near I-57. It was a Target when we moved to town in 1991, but it sure didn’t look like any Target I had ever been in before. Target eventually constructed a new store in big box ville on the norhthside of town and their old store became a Hobby Lobby (which also eventually moved north into the old Venture).

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  9. I remember my Grandma taking me to this mall in the 70′s when it opened. It was a great place back then. There were elaborate Christmas scenes and my favorite, FOUNTAINS EVERYWHERE! There were several for those of you who remember. There was a huge ring fountain in the center of the mall and the water came down from the upper story to the bottom in a round tiled pit. There were 2 spiky ball fountains down by the Ayre-Way and across from the old Karmelkorn store. That side of the mall always smelled like a pool! LOL On the lower level at LS Ayres front entrance there was a huge fish mural fountain. Upstairs by the old Wilson’s Leather, there was a long strip fountain you could sit next to. It was made up of a shallow trough with these odd tubes sticking out of it.

    Some of the first stores of Scottsdale Mall were Jo-Ann Fabrics, Singer Sewing Machines, So-Fro Fabrics, Rathskeller Restaurant, Richman Brothers, Milady Shop, Coney Island Restaurant, Lerner’s, Lane Bryant, Zondervan’s Bookstore, B.Dalton Bookstore, Waldenbooks, Stride Rite, Buttons & Bows, Farrell’s Restaurant, Chess King, Redwood & Ross, Bishop’s Buffet, Crafter’s Showcase, World Bazaar, Aladdin’s Castle, GNC, Reader’s World, 2 Hallmark Shops (one up and one down), KB Toys, Musicland, County Seat, Tinder Box, Spencer’s, Merle Norman, Radio Shack, Susie’s Casuals, Naturalizer Shoes, Marianne Shop, Gantos, Parklane Hosiery, Motherhood, J. Riggins, Fannie May and Things Remembered.

    After the remodel in 1993 several were closed and more were added, some a few years before the remodel. As I remember there was a Gloria Jean’s Coffee, Gordon’s Jewelry, Zales Jewelry upstairs by Ayre’s, Michalski’s, Memorabilia Shop, DEB, Sam Goody, El-Bee Shoes, Foot Locker, Bath & Body Works, Chic-a-Filet, Subway, Hacienda, The Pink Iguana and Interior Concepts.

    I know I have probably missed a few, but it was fun trying to remember them all!

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    Tom Reply:

    Darrid,

    While attending college I worked part-time in Scottsdale Mall, at the ever-classy Redwood & Ross store. You may be interested to know that fountains in malls aren’t only there for looks and ambiance, their secondary (or perhaps even primary) purpose is to humidify the air during the heating season. Can’t have mall customers wearing wool pants and skirts getting nasty static electric shocks from touching metal stair railings and such!

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    Diana Reply:

    @Darrid,

    Thanks for the nostalgia trip with the descriptions of the Scottsdale Mall fountains! I used to think they were so cool when I visited there as a child.

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    Judy Reply:

    @Darrid, What a great memory of Scottsdale Mall stores. Do you remember a restaurant that had the word “garden” in the titlet?

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    Nancy Reply:

    @Judy, 3 years later.. =) Farmers Garden. I LOVED that place.

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  10. I grew up two miles away from Scottsdale Mall. I worked there part-time in 1992-93 will in high school. At the time, the mall was only running at 42% occupancy. After the ’93 renonvations, things picked up. When I returned to South Bend from college in late ’97, the mall was plugging along at a higher occupancy than when I left town, but many of quality stores, such as men’s and women’s clothing, had been replaced by local independant vendors and such. Quality selection was surely lacking at the mall. One thing for certain is that ownership and management changed over several times during the mall’s last decade. Although it is convenient to blame crosstown competition for the mall’s demise, I strongly believe a lack effort, organization, and commitment from ownership/management played the most significant role in the fall of Scottsdale Mall. I can speak for many in saying that we loved this mall. I don’t believe the people of South Bend gave up on this mall. I believe the powers that be gave up on it.

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    Tom Reply:

    Vic,

    I agree with you. I had a summer job in 1973 as a construction laborer at Scottsdale and it was a first-class mall. I always thought what really hurt the mall was when the Don M. Casto organization that developed the mall fought so hard to obstruct the construction of the US 20/31 by-pass, which after years of court battles took a portion of the ultimately underutilized rear parking lot by eminent domain. Had those silly developers embraced the by-pass from day 1, I believe it would’ve been built about 20 years sooner than it was and could’ve established an excellent roadway link from the mall to southern Elkhart county customers. With a broader established loyal customer base, the mall might’ve survived the competition by UP 10 years later. Also, I’d always thought the mall needed a third anchor such as a Carson, Pirie, Scott , which would’ve given it a middle-tier retailer UP didn’t have. In many ways this otherwise decent mall was mismanaged right from the start.

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    Dave Reply:

    Excellent insight. The short-sightedness of this Don M. Casto organization ultimately proved to be a very costly mistake.

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  11. I loved this mall. This is where I would shop, even working at University Park.
    Great memories. If the management would have gone after stores that were not at UP, Scottsdale could have stood up to UP. It is sad that it is gone now, I seldom go out to Erskine Plaza, same things on Grape Road.

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  12. I hate whomever idea it was to tear down Scottsdale Mall,there was no reason to tear down that mall,they could of put stores in that Mall,Mishawaka people and the Mayor had Jealously issues with South Bend,Indiana having such a nice mall the Mayor had no right tearing down the mall without having other peoples opinions about tearing it down! Mishawaka/Granger people act like South Bend isn’t a good enough city B.S. its a very nice city.If I get money someday I’m rebuilding a very nice Mall in South Bend,Indiana! The crappy plaza they put in,in place of Scottsdale Mall will never make it they gave us crappy stores that no one will be shopping at,and Target isn’t a new store when had it years ago,Its time to bring decent stores and decent department store to South Bend,Indiana!

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    Amie Reply:

    @Brightlady,

    I totally agree, no reason to completely tear it down. During 2002-2003 I worked about 5 miles down the road from this mall, and would you believe Christmas 2002 the mall was PACKED with people? lots of shoppers!!! The mall occupancy rate was in serious decline and quite often there was a wait at Hacienda upstairs. I’m glad I lived back home at the time and knew of the upcoming demolition, I did one final walk thru of the mall late 2003 wish I would have taken pictures…

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  13. Me too, if I ever get rich, I would like to build a mall on the south side of south bend. I do not like the shopping center that is in the Scottsdale mall space now. Grape Road & UP Mall are a hassle. I miss the good ole Scottsdale mall. I worked at 7 different stores there. It was a nice place to shop, easy in, easy out. No traffic issues.

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  14. This mall could have really been something. As South Bend’s only two-story mall, there was plenty of room for growth after its remodel. As a child, I remember going there for Farrell’s for birthday parties, and the multiple fountains. The remodel included a food court (which only managed to attract about four places to eat in nine years) and a spiffy glass elavator.

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  15. Thank you so much for posting this, it was sure nice to reminisce (sp?) . I remember Scottsdale Mall fondly. After the renovation, I used to ride that glass elevator all the time, sometimes so much that other people that rode it thought of me as the unofficial bell boy. I visited there nearly once a week even up til the end. It was quiet, but peaceful. I remember when it was booming, I used to walk through and draw my own sort of directory of all the stores and where they were located and with my vivid imagination would go home and remodel the mall. The last movie I saw in the old Scottsdale 6 theatre was Hellboy.

    University Park Mall is such a hassle, especially after their latest renovation, you have to go round-about ways just to get in and out of the mall. I agree that the people didn’t give up on Scottsdale Mall, the management did. I do remember all the old fountains too, I LOVED those. I lived in the Scottsdale area until 1999, before my family moved closer to UP Mall, even though I was against the move at the time. I still went to Scottsdale more often. I still have a 5-CD changer stereo system I bought at Montgomery Ward in 1995 I think. Scottsdale was neat, it was a 2-story mall, but it was kind of built on a descending hill from west to east, so you could enter the mall’s first floor on the west side, but you could also enter the second floor on the east side. I also remember Jenny McCarthy did an autograph signing there one time, I always had the hots for her. Sadly, I didn’t get her autograph, the line was way too long, but from the other side of the escalators, I did see her bend over slightly and I did get a good glimpse that she wasn’t wearing anything underneath. :)

    I just think they really gave up on Scottsdale too early. They claimed it was because of a lack of anchor stores. Well hello, look at the all the would be anchor stores at Erskine Villiage now: Kohl’s, T.J. Maxx, etc. Those could’ve easily been built in Montgomery Wards and L.S. Ayres former locations without the whole mall being demolished. I also remember reading one of the reasons they wanted to build Erskine Villiage was to have a ramp off of the US 20 bypass to come down directly into the shopping center, though that never did happen.

    Funny, but also kind of sad story. The next to last time I went to the movie theatre (I think to see XXX), I had won a Magneto stuffed animal out of one the crane machines and I forgot about it in the food court when I went to the movie. When I walked past there after the movie, it was still sitting there. No one had been by there the whole time.

    Oh well, nothing that can be done now. Thanks so much for the pictures taking me back in time. I will always have great memories of Scottsdale Mall.

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    Angie Reply:

    Scottsdale Mall was the greatest mall ever,just because South Bend had a nice mall to go too,they had to ruin it, jealous issue of a 2 story mall in South Bend,something Mishawaka didn’t have,the mayor couldn’t wait to tear it down,couldn’t even got anyones opinions and talked about other options for the mall.I believe that if a mall,casino,waterpark ect. would be built in South Bend it would make South Bend a happy place all over again,South Bend People need new places to go to and new things to see in town,and it brings more jobs also!!!!! Does anyone know what the icecream place was called across from fannie may on left hand side it had few booths across the back and on side and bins of icecream flavors?

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    L Reply:

    @Angie, Bressler’s. How ’bout that grape sherbet?

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  16. Scottsdale Mall was a beautiful mall when it first opened up until and through at least the mid-1980′s. It was white brick and at least two really nice fountains. One of the fountains was at the west end and is hard to describe but suffice it to say that there was a tube that came up out of the water and sprayed water in all directions around the tip of the tube so that it kind of formed a ball of water around the top. The other fountain was closer to the center of the mall. With this fountain there was a large round tube near the ceiling and water came out of hundreds of holes that lined the bottom of the tube and fell to the ground-floor pool. Originally the theatre at Scottsdale Mall was only a two or three screen theatre located on the ground floor near the south entrance on the west end of the mall (the pictures above show what the mall looked like after all of the renovation). Favorite memories of Scottsdale Mall are going there with my mom and grandparents, Farrell’s Ice Cream, the game room, and Junior Achievement trade fairs. It’s too bad that the owners couldn’t get a good manager to save that place becuase it really was unique. I miss it being there.

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  17. there was a womens’ clothing store with ” village” in the the title. It was a small store and possibly privately owned. I’m pretty sure the same store existed at Concord Mall in Elkhart. Does anyone remember the name?

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    john Reply:

    @joelle,

    Looked it up on my mall directory scans, Village Scene

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  18. I used to work at Farrell’s at one time.
    I remember they used to have annual events, like an antique show where I bought some magazines from WWII, and an annual farm show where they brought animals into the mall, including ostriches.

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  19. Fond good bye to 1993 -

    In that year I worked at FRCH design and together with a great group of people designed the renovation of scottsdale mall.

    the birdhouse light at the staircase – I loved the funny cuteness of them and the project was really a joy.

    It won a national design award and was published on the cover of Architectural Record magazine for its lighting design work.

    I’m glad to have read all the comments here and see the pics again . best regards-

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  20. Brown’s Sporting Goods used to be upstairs next to Waldenbooks in the 80s, when they were both on the West side of the mall, where the food court ended up.

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  21. A sad day I didn’t even know about until now, as we moved from South bend in 1997. You inspired me to blog about it – http://gotld.blogspot.com/2009/11/scottsdale-mall.html

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  22. I really miss Scottsdale….. Going to Farrells as kid was awesome…. Plus the mall had a really cool scent that no other mall has…… I worked at Chess King during the summer of 1990…. They could have done alot with that mall with just tearing down the anchor stores and rebuilding with new larger ones… Nordstrom, Macys and a JC Penney would have been perfect…. But Oh well…. Its gone and replaced with another strip mall in the Michiana area and will be vacant after the “newness” wears off……

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  23. I truly enjoyed going to the mall before, and after Jackson and RHS football and basketball games. Aladdin’s Castle, Farrel’s, Coney Island, and Rathskellers were the spot. It was easy access for everyone, in the city, to get to. Car or bus, and you’re there. I have great memories of the place.

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  24. I had just turned 13 when Scottsdale closed down. I still miss going every weekend with friends to watch $1 movies. Also I missed the cute guy, Sam, who was working at the pizza place. The memories…

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  25. The UP Mall did to the Scottsdale Mall what the Scottsdale Mall did to downtown South Bend and adjacent nieghborhoods. When I was still living in the Southside, our family still did the majority of our shopping in downtown South Bend (Sears, JC Pennys, Robertsons, Gilberts, etc…). The State Theatre, Colfax and Avon Theatres were still open; almost every neighborhood had a Five and Dime and local restaurant, not to mention small nieghborhood grociers. South Michigan St alone boasted of an A&P, Southside Grociers, Cira’s Market, shoe stores, several banks, barbers, and barbers. All were within walking distance, or a 15 cent bus ride. The Scottsdale Mall destroyed this entire zone of nieborhood commerce -most were family owned enterprises.

    Of course, not all the blame resides with the Mall. White Flight from the Southside, Near Northeastside, and Near Westside contributed, as well as the decision by South Bend to make the downtown area pedestrian. Parking became a hassle, and for out of towners. The demise of small tool & die and other job shops, as well as the clsoing of Bendix didn’t help. But as far as commerce went, the Scottsdale Mal was a death knell for urban commerce.

    Sorry for not having too many fond memories of the Scottsdale Mall. The Grape Rd/Main St Correigdor did the Scottsdale Mall in. I never could understand why someone living in Lapaz or North Liberty preferred going to the UP Mall, which is much farther away than the Scottsdale Mall. However, the post-Scottsdale Mall Erskine Village area has been a boom for the Southside. I prefer going there than fight traffic in Mishawaka.

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  26. I stumbled on this site searching for an old shopping area on the east side of South Bend. I was at Notre Dame in the early sixties when students didn’t have cars, so I did all my shopping downtown. Like the previous poster, I remember it as a really fun place with several good department stores and all sorts of smaller retail places.

    When i finally did have a car in grad school, I got around the area more, and I think I remember another shopping area somewhere over toward Mishawaka. Could have been downtown Mishawaka, but I don’t think so. Anyway there was one multi-story department store and several smaller places. Does anyone else remember this, or I am I mixing up memories of South Bend up with someplace else?

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    Joe Reply:

    @Joe,

    The shopping center you are talking about is “Town & Country Shopping” Center. It is located right on the edge of Mishawaka’s West Side near South Bend. And actually T&C has survived all these years. I believe there are no vacanies in the center and as far as I can tell, the parking lot still fills up. Nice to see an old shopping center like this still thriving in today’s economy.

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    Joe Reply:

    @Joe,

    Thanks for your reply. The McKinley plaza could have been what I was remembering. After more research, however, I think it was an older shopping area along Mishawaka Avenue over past the UI-SB campus. Of course, I could be conflating that memory with one of the many other places I’ve lived over the intervening half century.

    Joe

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  27. My best memories are mostly from the late 70s and eighties as a teenager. I can remember going to see ‘Jaws’ in the Scottsdale theatre when I was 12! It’s too bad this mall had to be demolished and that they couldn’t keep good stores in the mall. Or manage it well enough to keep it profitable. I remember the small food court when it was on the 1st floor by the theatre (Dog and Suds – with the best frosted mug of root beer; Orange Julius; Fanny May Candies; a small Mexican food stand (before Hacienda) where the woman would hand you your food and warn you to be careful of the gravy – so it won’t spill. I can’t remember Ayr-Way that much, but remember the name. I remember the last times I ever went to Scottsdale was to go to The Funnybone Comedy Club or Hacienda. Even then, I noticed that there weren’t any stores that I knew. Either vacant or little stores I never heard of. It’s great that there are pictures to remember what used to be a great mall.

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  28. There was a Dog & Suds in the food court?!

    Also, “John,” if you’re still reading this, would you please be so kind as to share your directory scans?

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  29. Wow, I’ve been looking for pics of this mall! I’m new(ish) to South Bend so I had heard about the mall that used to be where the Target on the south side is, but was curious about what it looked like. I live in this area so it’s nice to at least have Erskine Village to save me the drive to Mishawaka. Grape Road traffic is awful and the UP Mall is a pain. (I agree with the above poster about the parking redesign – it causes terrible bottlenecks even when traffic is relatively light.) I try to avoid it whenever possible. It’s a real shame, it seems like this mall could have been saved with some better management.

    I agree that it probably wasn’t only UP Mall that killed off Scottsdale Mall. Shifting demographics probably had a lot to do with it, too. From my casual observations, it seems that this side of town used to be upper-middle class, but is now more blue-collar/working class with the exception of a few wealthy enclaves. University Park is closer to Granger and thus more convenient for people with plenty of disposable income.

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  30. Thank you for posting this site. I live in Texas and I saw the images of the Sunrise Mall. Love it. I have family in Indiana around Plymouth and Bremen and we would go to the Scottsdale Mall during our vacation. There were a few things that stood out for me. I always loved that toy store with the toy soldier up front. Never seen that before. During the remodel of loved the food court and although I loved the neon and the awkward bright colors I remember the electric train that would go around the court. During the time of the demolishion I saw half of the building destroyed but could make out the escalators. It broke my heart to see a place once full of life become an empty shell and rubble. Once again thank you for posting this. Alot of great memories.

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  31. I grew up in Plymouth… I have fond memories of the short trip to the “South Side” to eat at Hacienda and meander for the evening. I now live in South Bend and rarely go to the Eskine Village that is currently there. Honestly, I’d rather patronize a great old mall like that than any of the big box junk on Grape or main. But… progress, so they say.

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  32. I miss Scottsdale Mall so much. I loved it as a child before it was redone and I loved it as an adult.
    I wish we could have gotten stores to take an interest in being in there. I don’t really get why they didn’t.
    A lot of great memories from there!

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  33. I just moved to the South Bend area, and I figured there was a t some point another mall then University Park. Reading this makes me sad, University Park Mall is absolutely beautiful but it is also overcrowded, I can barely move in there. I am one who doesn’t like to conform, so if this mall was still in business I would probably shop there over University Park. It’s a shame it isnt!

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  34. Having lived in this area for a long time and seen a lot of the changes that have occurred over the years, I feel like there is enough demand for two malls.

    The area where the Scottsdale Mall once stood is doing quite well today, suggesting it wasn’t that stores didn’t want to be in that area, but that there was something about being in that mall that was unappealing.

    It seems the mall was horribly mismanaged and an opportunity to return it to it’s former glory was seriously squandered.

    There are plenty of mall-like places around that don’t have traditional anchor stores, but make up for that by providing what amounts to a destination experience. The anchors could have very well been a snazzy movie theater or a state of the art arcade to provide a couple of examples. The UP Mall has never provided that, and I think the Scottsdale Mall could have survived if they’d taken that approach.

    I do think there’s still room in this area for a mall like that. Who knows, maybe someday!

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  35. I was sad to hear the Scottsdale mall got tore down… I only lived in Southbend for 2 years but that whole time I worked at the Scottsdale Target… I was there in 1997/98 and thought the mall was still in good shape! I loved wandering through the mall on my lunch break and after I got off work! I think many didn’t realize how truly it would be missed!

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  36. Does anyone remember the women’s clothing store called Ups & Downs in the early mall days?

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  37. I just wanted to say thank you for the pictures of Scottsdale Mall and I want to say thank you to all of the people who feel the way I do about this mall.
    Our country has changed so much in a very short period of time, the mall used to be one of those places to go and roam through or goto a movie or a place just to take the family. It’s just a damn shame they tore down such a nice and fairly young mall just to put in stores that have already gone or will be going out of business.
    My favorite memories is going with my family when I was a child, times were so much different, families were closer, things were still made in America. This country is now in the crapper and places like Scottsdale Mall are now only pictures or in our memories, I need to invent a time machine.
    Once again I want to thank all of the people who still remember and still love Scottsdale Mall.

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  38. Kero’s Coney Island. I am salivating just thinking of them!

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  39. Can anyone tell me who got married in Scottsdale mall years ago? When I was real young a fancy wedding took place in the mall,I remember having wedding cake there!

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  40. Does anyone know who got married inside Scottsdale mall years ago?It was jammed packed of people and I remember having cake there.

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  41. Anyone remember when the movie theater in the UP mall closed?

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  42. Oh man, I miss that mall to this very day. It was the only two-level mall in the area and the renovations were gorgeous.

    I was in my teens in the mid-nineties and spent a lot of time in this mall since the North Village mall was already drying up at that point. Aladdin’s Castle was a popular haunt as was the movie theater. I also used to hit up the comic shop that moved in there toward Scottsdale’s end. Once I turned 21, I enjoyed the Funny Bone quite a bit.

    But it was becoming more and more clear as we passed the millennium mark that the mall was in trouble. Shops were closing left and right being replaced with crummier shops or simply left vacant. I seem to remember hearing that the mall was asking too much in rent from new potential tenants and they’d open up stores elsewhere.

    The last memory I have of the old place is when my girlfriend and I slowly strolled the mall one last time prior to its closing.

    So glad I found this site – thanks for sharing!

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  43. So many horror stories about the scary east side of the mall in the end days… Neat story, I never thought I would see pictures of the old Scottsdale Mall.

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  44. Im only 13 but from 99-03 when the mall closed I LOVE the place i rember only being 3 or for and got to buy hoy wheels cars the mall was great its the only place we did are shoping we almost never when to the UP mall . Its sad now being 13 and seeing what happened to the place :’(

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  45. Does anyone remember alley opps ? Im sure.thts what the diner style resturant was called , if it was your bday you would get a free sundae or shake of some sort , I spent a.few bdays there as a child. The dollar movie was awesome my cousin use to wrk there nd they would have so mch popcorn she wuld take some home in trash bags. Oh how I miss this place , I miss t he memories the fun the excitement the fountains the colored lights on the support looking beams , ohh how iwish it was still open so my daughter could go there with me as I use to go as a child , hacienda was always.packed! Sad tht it did get empty . I remember montgomery wards I recall the going out of business sale . I remember the karate classes there Eb toys , wonderful stores , the escalators , the trick or treating at tht mall the two whole stories of fun fun funn , Up mall is a pain and its not even decorative like this mall , south bend deserevs a mall not a strip village which by.the way.sucks . If all the stores coukd have combined into one inside tht.mall todayu , consider profits ! Goodness .. This makes me want to boycott the ershkin village & up :( rip scottsdale mall ,

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    Steve1970 Reply:

    @Stefannie,
    Your memories of Scottsdale Mall are alot like mine. That mall ment alot to me, back when times were simpler and families were closer and times were better. The mall was a place to go on a boring Sunday afternoon and who could forget around the holidays. It is sad to think about how it used to be.
    Always remember the way things were, because they will never comeback :-{

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  46. I loved Scottsdale Mall. I remember the drugstore Oscos, eating icecream sundaes at Farrells and getting Christmas gifts of very nice clothes from Gantos. I remember my grandmother shopping at Montgomery wards (Monkeywards…lol). I loved the chocolate pie at Bishops. I am glad I don’t live in the area now and did not see it torn down. I remember going into Spencer gifts as an 8th grader not too long after it opened and seeing all the crazy items there. Loved the chlorine ladened fountain with the round ball of spraying water.

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  48. My parents started taking us to Scottsdale after Marquette Mall in Michigan City started losing it’s flavor. I used to love walking in near the Target entrance and smelling the swimming pool aroma of the spraying fountain sculptures. And no trip was complete without window-shopping at Farrell’s candy shop. When University Park was new and closer to home, we rarely went back. Now that I live in the area again, I wish I could.

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  49. My most insane memory of this mall was one late evening, myself and bro-in-law was picking up my sister from the “Lerner’s” wher she worked. We were waiting for her in a nearby sitting area when some senile old man walked up, dropped his pants, and whizzed in the planter sitting 20 feet across from us like it was no biggie. INSANE!! Well, that and getting banned from Mongomery Ward’s for price sticker changing and shoplifting in our teens.

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  50. When Scottsdale Mall first opened, there was a small Mexican restaurant next to or near the Scottsdale Theater. They had the best tacos, I ever had in South Bend. Plus, the lady that owned it or worked it was the biggest flirt I ever encountered. Sometimes when I hear the word cougar, I think of her, but I miss those tacos even more.

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