REI Announces Bedford NH Store!

REI announced last week they will be opening an REI store in Bedford NH, in Fall 2023. couldn’t be more excited to have REI only 10 miles from my headquarters in Goffstown.

See my May 2023 update on the REI Bedford NH Store

The REI Bedford Store will be a large 22,000 square foot anchor store at the new Market & Main Center, located at 125 S River Rd, Bedford, NH. (where the old Macy’s use to be). This is the second REI store to open in NH. The first is 100 miles away in North Conway.

Artist rendering of new REI Store
REI Bedford Opens Fall ’23, 10 Miles from TrailsNH HQ

Bedford NH REI Store quick facts:

  • Opening: Fall 2023
  • Address: Market and Main; 125 S River Rd, Bedford, NH 03110
  • Size: 22,000 square feet
  • Special Features
    • Full-service bike shop 
    • Ski and snowboard shop
    • Buy online-pick up in store 
    • Curbside pickup
  • Local REI Co-op Membership
    • 628,700 REI members in the Boston, Massachusetts
    • 78,900 REI members in New Hampshire
      • 3,400 REI members in Bedford and Manchester
  • Closest REI Stores to Bedford NH:
    • Reading, MA: 43 miles away, opened 1987
    • Cambridge, MA: 51 miles away, opened 2021
    • Boston, MA: 55 miles away, opened 2003
    • Framingham, MA: 62 miles away, opened 1997
    • Hingham, MA: 70 miles away, opened 2004
    • Westbrook, ME: 99 miles away, opened 2021
    • North Conway, NH: 102 miles away, opened 2019

What Does This Mean For Local EMS Stores?

The EMS return policy has become much more strict than in the past. Now you can only get in-store credit on a return. So, if there’s a chance the item might not be right, I expect local hikers will go to REI.

EMS Manchester is at the mall. The staff is friendly, and helpful. But, it’s not a big store. If REI Bedford is well stocked, local hikers will probably go there.

I think EMS Concord will close, or at least take a really big hit. Why? The staff is rude. I shop at that store several times a year, and they are never friendly. You never get greeted as your enter. You can stare at a shelf for a long long time and never be asked if you need help. And, you can stand at the counter holding gear, and they just keep chatting with each other. I’m not alone in this. Many hikers tell me the same thing. I think most hikers who live near Concord will drive the 20 miles or so to REI in Bedford.

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Kimball is a website designer and developer in Goffstown, NH.

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