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Bullseye the Dog Throws Preview Bash at Target’s New Kailua Digs

We got a peek into Target’s newest Hawai‘i store, which opens Wednesday, March 4.


Photo: David Croxford


It’s going to be a busy week for Bullseye, the Target store mascot. Making a rare appearance, he showed up in festive attire (puppy-size lei and perfectly touched-up red makeup, of course) for the media opening and blessing of the new Kailua Target location. The store is set to open to the public on Wednesday, with lucky friends and family of staff getting to pre-shop at an invite-only event tomorrow.


Ever the gracious host, Bullseye treated us to a sneak peek at his new digs, which store officials say are designed to fit Kailua’s small-town-by-the-beach vibe.


SEE ALSO: Target Kailua: 7 Things We’ve Got Our Shopping Sights On


Before breaking ground, the team took a look at other O‘­­ahu locations and got input from community residents to figure out what kama‘āina folks wanted in their Target. The result is a smaller setup than other stores—no one was keen on having a red-and-white monolith ruining the town’s chill village vibe (and some people didn’t want a Kailua Target at all)—and more local items.


“Target is really proud of our ability to not just take a big box and drop it somewhere else, but to really see what it should have on the inside as well as how should it look on the outside,” says Target public relations manager Erika Winkels.  “Target has a new CEO, and one of the things he’s focused on is localization. So we’re just starting to look at that and how we can apply that. We’re trying to figure out, what does it mean to be locally relevant? It might mean a smaller store because that’s what people want, or it might mean more local products.”


The beefed-up “Aloha Shop” (all Hawai‘i stores have some version of the Aloha Shop, but Kailua’s is kicked up a notch) greets shoppers with local brands, including Oils of Aloha and Watanabe Floral. You’ll find local slippers in the shoe section and local vegetables (whenever possible) in the produce section. The store’s exterior also incorporates a number of elements from the Kailua Urban Design Task Force Guidelines, including decorative architectural touches, vines and palm trees to add a green touch, and lava rock in the building materials. At the entrance to the parking lot, a pergola is decorated with Island-inspired mosaics made by local artist Leah K. Riggs.


The store may be small for a Target, but it’s still home to a pharmacy, a Target café, Starbucks and a well-stocked swim section. The brightly lit cosmetics department carries brands that include Essie and Sonia Kashuk, and the jolly seasonal section is already fully stocked with Easter goodies. The beloved Target Dollar Spot discount section is front and center when you walk in, and the vast electronics department has an attractive, low sight level (we suspect, in order to make it more dog-friendly for when Bullseye has a hankering for tablets).


As for Bullseye himself? The celebrity canine had a few barks of approval for the slick new store but stayed mostly mum during the affair, posing for a few press pics between treats. Perhaps he’s saving his voice for the grand opening on Wednesday.


345 Hahani St., Monday–Saturday, 8 a.m.–10 p.m., Sunday, 8 a.m.–9 p.m.


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Honolulu Magazine May 2020
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