Smith Haven Mall
Only months before the 70s decade rolled in, the Smith Haven Mall opened its doors to the public. Centrally located in Lake Grove, it was a welcome sight to a populace fed up with driving to Roosevelt Field for their shopping. Today, it is much like every other mall in the country. But back in the day, it was quite the sight to see.
For one thing, how many malls today have fine artwork displayed? The Smith Haven Mall included works of art by Larry Rivers, noted sculptor Alexander Calder and psychedelic artist, Peter Max. There were numerous fountains, murals, ponds and sculptures located throughout the structure, including a large fiber optics fountain where small beads of oil made their way down each optic strand. The center of the mall was comprised of a sunken circle surrounded by seating, where they would hold various events and exhibitions.
And then, there were the stores.
Here is a list of businesses that inhabited the Smith Haven Mall in the 70s. It is by no means complete. Should you notice a glaring omission, we hope you’ll share it in the comments section, so we can continue to expand this resource. Also, it should be noted that I’ve only found two pictures of the mall from the 70s (both of which are shown above). If you have any interior or exterior shots from the era, we would love to include them here. (please see our submissions page for more info.)
Without further ado, a list of 70s stores (in alphabetical order):
- Abraham and Straus
- Andre’s Head Factory
- Asian Gifts
- Barricini’s Candy
- Beefsteak Charlie’s
- Buster Brown
- Chess King
- Different Strokes
- Family Melody Center
- Fanny Farmer
- Florsheim Shoes
- Food of all Nations
- Herman’s World of Sporting Goods
- Import Alley
- Kay Bee Toys
- Kay’s Jewelry
- Orange Julius
- Sam Goody
- Spencer Gifts
- Steak and Brew
- Thom McAn
- Time Out Amusements
- United Artists Movie Theater
- Wicks and Sticks
- Zum Zum
Today, few of these stores exist. They were systematically replaced by national chains that can be found in just about every mall across the country. The loss of unique shops and the wonderful artwork have left the Smith Haven Mall a shell of its former self, but at least we can remember the glory days together.
I would love to hear your recollections of the Smith Haven Mall from the 70s era, along with any pictures or information you can offer to help us remember the past. Share your stories in our comments section, and if you have pictures to submit, they can be sent to email@example.com. Thanks!
Ah, good old Smith Haven. So many memories… going to meet Bob Nystrom and Garry Howatt at Herman’s, the McCrory’s time warp, and being deathly afraid of walking all the way into the back of Time Out arcade because I thought I’d be killed.
Oh, and does anyone remember that huge bird cage down one of the wings? Or did I just make that up?
Great memories, thanks for sharing!
And no, you didn’t make anything up. There did indeed used to be a large birdcage there, although I’m not sure of which wing it was in.
Great site. In was a mall rat hanging out at Time Out. Gene and Joe working the change and tokens. Wasn’t there a little piano shop near the appliance store that was across from Asian Gifts? This was where the bird cages were. Also what was that pizza place that was in the Sears wing? Jimmy was a maintenance guy there. His wife worked as the manager of the cookie factory. Remember IBI security?
The appliance store was Layfette’s. (I think that’s how it was spelled-pronounced; Laughy-ettes.). They were a chain store.
Not on the list was also Radio Shack. (There was one in the mall and outside at the Fox Shopping Plaza (Pathmark, Fox Liquors and a jewish deli).
The piano shops were; Wurlitzer and Nelson Varon’s.
There was a “Ticket Master” (where you bought concert tickets) on the mezzanine of A&S. The mezzanine was a restaurant. (There was also a beauty salon.)
the pizza place was expresso pizza
It wasn’t Ticketmaster, it was Ticketron. And the location moved around the mall over the years. It became Ticketmaster in the 80’s at the earliest, and eventually was located in or near Sam Goodys
The pizza place was called Expresso Pizza. No tables, just a very long counter.
I remember Expresso..It was next to the McCrory Entrance on the corridor that was going to house Sears in the future. Pizza was one of the best I’ve ever had.
Oh yeah Expresso Pizza. Wow! There were tables in the back of that place. You may not recall but there were. Yes, they had a long counter that’s for sure.
I have been looking for the name of that pizza place, expresso pizza… best pizza I’ve ever had. Still remember from my childhood… any idea wheee they went with their recipe? I’d go anywhere to taste that again… pizza lover
I remember fish tanks all around too and do u remember outside the mall in the back called cocos
I remember going there with my family until it closed. It was one of there favorites along with Good Steer on the way to the mall. Cocos was great. I believe they were taken over by Village in.n. They are where i am now in the Midwest. I miss New York and my life there!!!
It was CoCos, and next door was a steak restaurant called The Plankhouse
One of my favorite stores in Smithhaven was called Asian Gifts. It was just that. I used to buy this Asian Orange Ginger candy that were wrapped in rice paper. You could eat the candy and the paper it was wrapped in would melt in your mouth. There were head shop items in the back of the store. The owners were really nice.
That was where we could buy “Chinese slippers” those black cotton maryjane shoes we all wore in the early 80’s….
Yes Completley correct
I love Asian gifts also
OmG yes. Rice paper candy ! They were located up by the register. I can see the older Asian man ringing me up now. Thanks!!
All Long Island kids were mall rats, especially in the winter months. Go there with my buddies and the day was not done without a burger and fribble from Friendly’s 🙂
Best prices for rolling papers!
Omg I just happened upon this. I loved the mall. I’d go up there almost every Saturday. My family lived in brittany hills so it wasn’t to bad of a walk. I loved different strokes and sam goody. Always popped into fanny farmer for a free sample. Then to McCrory’s for fries and a shake. Thanks for the memories!!
Yes! I thought I was remembering something that didnt exist. I do have fuzzy memories of the big birdcage, must have been around 78 or 79. I thought it was in the center circle but I could be mistaken. On another note, I rode an elephant in that circle when I was 9 in 1980
Yes the birdcage was there
The bird cage was down the Sears wing out side of dr x pets and buster brown shoes.
The bird cage was by Macy if I remembered right
I definitely remember the huge bird cage!!
My Dad took me to see Bobby Nystrom and Garry Howatt at Herman’s as I had just started playing ice hockey and he was encouraging me to all them for advice. I think I still have Nystroms autographed picture from then.
No. It was there along with fish tanks.
My brother worked in CHess King, Used to go to MCCrory’s/Wicks /Sticks. I remember when it opened Batman/Robin came by helicopter. I remember getting a warm salted pretzel in Sears. Andre’s I’m pretty sure is now down here on Hutchinson Island on the Treasure Coast in Florida where I live now.
Thanks for sharing that, Kathryn! I used to love how you could cut through McCrory’s, which had two entrances. Made it a much quicker walk to Time-Out. 🙂
“Cut-through” McCrory’s…..everyone said it that way!
There was a pet shop in there and a shoemaker by the parking lot exit.
There was also a carousel of Brach’s candy by the pound. Everyone would eat them but no one ever paid for it!
Yes. I remember!
So true! And 3 candy bars for $1
Yes, thank you for reminding me of the cut through. Loved that.
I grew up in the Storybook homes in St. James and we would cut through the old farm fields and walk there almost every day to go to Time Out. One of my closest childhood friends lived in the big green house on Alexander Avenue across fro Roy Rogers. Anyway, the games I remember from Time Out. It’s difficult to remember all the games and games I may have imagined playing there but actually played somewhere else…like the Smithtown Flea Market, Stony Brook Bowling and 7-11 in St. James. Space Shuttle Pinball, Galaga, Gyruss, Frogger, Punch-Out, Dragon’s Lair, Ring King, After Burner, Galaxian, Ms. Pac-Man, Paperboy, Crossbow, Operation Wolf, Venture, Wizard of Wor, Berzerk, Scramble, Stargate (I think Defender was at 7-11 along with Front Line, Spy Hunter, & Make Trax). Would love to see some pictures in Time Out and to be reminded of more games and the Pins…I know they had several but I can only for sure remember Space Shuttle.
Waldman Books and The Cookie Factory. I remember the large one screen theater!!
Thanks for reminding me of those places. Much appreciated! Are you sure the Cookie Factory was there in the 70s?
Saw many movies in the Smith Haven Mall theater, from all the great disaster movies of the era, to the Pink Panther series, and plenty of James Bond as well. (That’s what my parents liked to see). 🙂
Mrs. Fields maybe?
Possibly. Let’s see if anyone else can chime in and help us out. I did all Waldenbooks to the list though!
Great! What about these? (I think they were 70’s but could have been early 80’s)
I don’t personally remember them, but that doesn’t mean they weren’t there. Let’s see if anyone else can confirm.
I worked at Mrs. Fields and that was early 90s.
Thanks for that info!
How about INTRIQUE? That was 60’s or 70’s and was like a SPENCERS on the other side of mall. I used to go in there a lot and preferred it to SPENCERS. They had some things the other didn’t and I always loved the name. Good Ole Smith Haven Mall. Was so much of my childhood. I remember all those stores and hanging out there all the time. So good to see a pic of it and to find out other people remember it also and fondly.
To answer anonymous below. It was the 80’s for those stores. I worked at Record Town from 1986 to 1988. around there.
Was it David’s Cookies?
Best movie I ever saw there , 1978 “Invasion of the Body Snatchers” !! P.S. I LOVE THIS SITE !!
Century Mall Theatre.
We started a protest outside the theater. They put too much tanglefoot on their sign that birds fell to the ground. It was a small protest but powerful. They removed it.
After the late movie let out the mall guards would usher you out the side corridor to the parking lot.
Thank you for helping the birds
I was there opening day. They had golf carts to drive people from a&s to macys. You need to include g & g shirts….walacks (dad got all his suits there)….. shelleys tall girl shop….danskin leotards…spencers gifts. I remember in the early 70’s miss universe was there.
Thank you, Susan! I’m going to research those a little.
Wow, really appreciate all the comments coming in. Please keep them coming, and make sure you check out the rest of the site. Lots to see here. 🙂
I rememb er dans kin tights…I think it was by sears. There was also a fabric store and a piano storm next to it. I remember because we would go there for mom to buy patterns and fabric and dad would sit outside the store listening to the man play the piano in the store. It was by Macy’s or a&s. Remember the open air restaurant in a&s ? Sears had a restaurant too…
I think the store that sold Danskin was named Parklane. I had a friend who worked there.
Wallach’s and Florshiem.
So many famous people “appeared” at the SHM. If not there then across the street at Korvettes.
From the hill at Korvette’s we would gather to watch the closed circuit boxing matches playing at the Smithtown Drive-in across the street.
The fabric store was Frankel’s. The piano store was Wurlitzer.
Your dad was listening to MY dad playing the piano!
My father opened that store. Both my parents worked there. My sister was “Miss Wurlitzer”. I just hung around creating trouble 🙂
Did you slay ride down that korvettes hill in the snow. It was like a mini Bald Hill
Yes! Sleigh riding down Korvettes hill! I grew up in that development behind Korvettes
Yes, it was Amparo Munoz, Miss Universe 1974, who appeared at SHM. My sister got an autographed picture of her.
Amparo Munoz died at 56 a few years ago
I remember dropping “Salvo” tablets in the fountains and watching the water suds up. I would not be happy if my kids did that!!
That made me smile. Thanks for sharing, Lisa!
We did that, too. Only we used laundry detergent. (I still do it today. Life should be spontaneous and exciting!)
We also used to raid all the coins those starry-eyed lovers and dreamer threw into those “ponds”.
I remember the excitement when the mall first opened. Used to cut class and hitch hike to hang out at the mall. I stood outside of A&S to try to get tickets for the concert for Bangladesh, they sold out in minutes. As soon as they sold out Macy’s started to sell the tickets, the crowd turned as one and raced to the other end of the mall. It was all over in a matter of minutes and no I did not get tickets. Sure spent a lot of time hanging out at the mall tho’.
Thanks for sharing those memories! You are not alone; I think a lot of us spent many a day at that memorable mall.
Hey maybe I’m remembering a piece in my childhood that really wasn’t there ( as my big brother says) lol but,
I precisely remember going to a movie theater at the smith haven mall when I was 4/5 years bout 1971 and costumed Snow White and goofy and others would come out and greet the kids .. It was the old movie theater at SHM when you first walked into the mall, it was on the right and always had a gate up so we couldn’t go through the mall..
Does anyone else remember these costumed characters or am I wrong?
Carmen, so glad you found us over here and thanks for sharing those memories!
I don’t remember that specifically, but it sounds exactly like the promotional stuff Disney was doing in the early 70s. I wouldn’t be surprised at all if your memory is correct. Hopefully, someone else can come along and confirm. Thanks again!
I will confirm it.
Life was so thick with excitement!
I think your brother is trying to make you feel as if you are wacko! LOL!
All the Disney movies played in that theater and there were costumed Disney characters standing outside!
Love your website! I remember G & G in the early 80’s, not 100% sure about the 70’s though. Pretty sure that Mrs. Field’s store was not around in the 70’s OR 80’s. I remember the Naturalizer shoe store being there forever, and I worked there in the early 80’s. The senior citizens loved it, but it certainly wasn’t the ‘coolest’ place to work! It was me (as a teenager) and a bunch of old men haha…..
Thanks for sharing your recollections, Lisa!
What about Pet Doctor and Asian Gifts????
Thanks for commenting, Al!
I believe the Asian Gifts place was called Import Alley, which is on our list. Or are you thinking of another place?
Asian Gifts was not Import Alley. That was like a Pier One type place. Asian Gifts was just what it said… Asian Gifts. One of my favorites! Holiday Spa… Which became Jack La Lanne’s.
Thanks, I appreciate the confirmations! We’ll update the page soon. 🙂
It was called “Doctor’s Pet Shop”.
I worked at Import Alley.
Walter, the owner, was an alcoholic.
One day he was so drunk he began pulling up ladies dresses (yes, girls wore dresses!) He passed out in the mall in front of the store and I walked over him and down to Different Strokes and took a job there.
They were both “head shops” and sold pot paraphernalia.
Different Strokes was outrageous. I could go on with so many stories!
Brooks brothers was there
Asian Gifts was a shop owned by Chinese people who followed you all around as you shopped. Import Alley was a “head” or “hippy” shop. (I worked there. The owner; Walter, always showed up drunk. I stepped over him one day and walked to Different Strokes and started working there instead.
The pet shop was called; Doctor’s Pet Shop. When the mall opened they maintained the animal cages throughout the mall. There were monkeys, but they didn’t last long!
Who remembers the elevator at the main entrance before they added the food court?
Ah yes, the elevator that took you to the vast wasteland that was the second story. Rode it many times. 🙂
I rode it during school hours when I was in my teens. Security told my friend and I a person has to be 16 y.o. to be at the mall alone at that time. Security then told us to leave the entire mall premises.
Shouldn’t have been on that elevator… 😛
I was working at Block’s Luggage (formerly Rubin’s) when a black woman threw herself off the “bridge” above.
I remember her shaking and shaking. I learned later she had died.
The SHM was its own little world. Who needed Jerry Springer?
All malls were their own world. I worked for Morse Shoe in the Sunrise Mall on Fourth of July we went through the back catacombs into Bakers back room and kidnapped one of their sales girls..All in good fun. You can’t do that anymore.
The second floor had some corporate offices and The Ministries where kids could socialize and play board games.
“The Ministries” a vast wasteland? I think not! Where else could you lounge around on carpet-covered platforms and bean bag chairs
in a darkened room with lava lamps and eyeball kids from other towns that had also ridden in on the mall bus?… 😉
I remember the Ministries! And those bean bags. A great place to hang out and talk to other kids you’d never otherwise meet. As a teenager I had many “deep” conversations about the meaning of life and love and the latest albums. Long time ago.
Yes, I remember the glass elevator. Thank you. I totally forgot about that. I used to love going in that elevator to the 2nd floor as a kid.
OMG. Ready for this one?
Above the elevator was a gigantic piece of art we used to call “Legs’.
Now who didn’t own a set of the World Book Encyclopedia?
In the 1973 edition under “art” appears a picture of that “Legs” sculpture!
I remember that weird sculpture !!
I am pretty sure there was a store called Asian Gifts in the mall at one time.Maybe the name changed??? The late 70’s early 80’s was the time I would have gone into such a store. However, given my state of mind at the time, anything is possible… Lol
yes Asian gifts was in there Sears wing and if I’m not mistaken a pizza joint was right next store
I seem to remember Friendly’s being in the Sears wing, but not a pizza joint. I do remember Sbarro’s over by Different Strokes though.
Thanks for the comment!
There was a pizza place that wasn’t Sbarro’s. If remember correctly it was small but the pizza was good.
It was Expresso pizza. I use to work there from 1979 till it closed in 1984. Best pizza in town.
I think people are remembering Orange Julius. I believe it was next to Asian Gifts.(Hot dogs, hamburgers and smoothies.)
They werent “smoothies”. They were Orange Juliuses!
Yes Friendlys was there, as well, as good old Orange Juilius, and the restaurant inside of Sears.
Al! Do you remember the first couple of summers when the mall opened they used to launch fireworks?? On weds?
Thanks to everyone for all of the suggestions. Keep ’em coming!
I’ve added a few stores to the list today. If you’ve suggested something and don’t see it added, please don’t take offense. For the sake of accuracy, I try to confirm every store from at least two sources before I add it. Not only that it existed, but that it existed there during the 70s. Thanks for your patience!
anyone rember the ‘mall moonster” and how the kids were afraid of him. Also remember Frankels,,pet shop.
I remember the mall monster, and Zappa’s Dungeon.
Craft store (don’t know the exact name)
Huffman Cohen Vision (Turned into Pearle Vision)
Organ store (again don’t know the name but they had a round platform where a guy would sometimes play the organ as it rotated)
Leather shop – not sure if that was 70’s or 80’s
Michael’s Trading Post – used to love to walk past the windows and look at the pocket knives
Many many happy afternoons and evenings spent at that mall, first with my Mom and siblings on Friday (pay day for my Dad) and then later with friends. Never knew “Calder” was a person until a couple of years ago. Still mourning the loss of the center pit and the A&S restaurant that looked out on the mall.
The Mall Monster!!! I forgot all about him!!
I will confirm;
Cohan’s Optical (later Cohan’s Vision Center)
Hodor Dinettes (They even advertised on TV.)
Seaman’s Bank for Savings.
The organ store near Sears; Nelson Varon’s.
European American Bank (EAB)
Sam Goody’s (Music store – “Goody’s Got it!”
If these are not on the list, add them!
The store that became Pearle Vision Center originally had the name Hillman-Kohan. The name change was announced in a TV commercial featuring basketball superstar Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, who himself had changed his name and was using his tremendous height to put up the new sign!
I agree that it was much nicer back than. Had it’s own identity. I totally forgot about the birdcage but not that glass elevator. It was so cool at the time. Do you remember Sid’s pants, or perhaps it was called Sid’s Jeans? It had a big-assed pair of jeans mounted at the entrance. I tried to get a job at nuts and stuff. It was a narrow , long store on the right side heading towards Macy’s. Didn’t work out but I did get a job at Carvel in centereach. I would kill if anyone could come up with a pic of old Nesconset general store on Smithtown Blvd. It always smelled like candy when you walked in. Thanks for the memories!!
You are correct – Sid’s Pants! That pair of jeans was gigantic! It was part of the same family of stores as Just Shirts, which is missing from this list. Just Shirts was located in the Sears wing, not too far down from the center on the right side. My brother and a slew of his friends worked there from ’82-’87. They sold men’s dress shirts, acrylic sweaters, and Champion tees and sweatshirts. Manager’s name was Renee – she was so funny! Always taking a smoke break and sipping on her tea from Friendly’s. 🙂
I’m also remembering a couple of other stores not mentioned as of yet. There was a t-shirt shop that you could choose your decal and any lettering that you wanted and they’d create the shirt with that big hot press machine while you waited. I think it was near Foods of All Nations. That was definitely there in the 70’s. Additionally, there was a tobacconist shop that was near the old entrance to the mall, a couple of stores down from the movie theater. The smell of that place was so distinctive!
I worked at Sbarro’s for a few years in the early 80’s – a great spot to be but the uniform was hideous! A green wrap skirt and a red kerchief on my head – what a fashion statement…
worked at jean country late 70s
Man, I remember the Nesconset General Store. I think it was at the end of Lake Ave. South. It was old and the owners had an old dog who slept on the floor. In the back they stored lots of old vending machines.
OMG I just thought of him the other day! He was an icon when I was “mall age”
I also remember the mall monster (he was terrifying), and Zappa’s Dungeon but it was my early teens in the mid 80’s.
The “mall monster”.
I worked at Pathmark and he waited on my line. You could tell he was around because the smell was pungent.
When he got up to me I actually asked him why he wore 2 winter coats (all year) and what looked like motor oil dripping all over him.
The question started a friendship/acquaintance.
He told me he had been in a fire and most of his skin had burned away.
The oil was vasoline (old and dirty because it was a medical “event” to bathe). He had to have it because it coated his flesh and prevented infection. His body could not regulate heat, that’s why he wore 2 coats.
He was the kindest man I met at the SHM and we chatted every time we met there.
It was unfortunate that people actually make fun of him to his face.
(I remember two teenaged girls yelling at him, telling him he was ugly and stunk and using the term “mall monster”.
The man was always in pain and had been through so much.
I learned that he had acquired an enormous sum of money from the accident but it never gave him any comfort.
I will never forget him.
I grew up with him his name is Mike Randazzo he was very kind he became schizophrenic in the mid-70s he was an excellent baseball player He use to drive me in his mothers 1970 sport satilite car had a 383 in it and was supposedly fast but he drove it real slow I’ll never forget that he was a huge fan of deep purple he was a. Very kind person just had mental problems wish they gave him medicine he probably would have been fine all and all he was a good person it’s was just a shame
OMG!! The Mall Monster!! He scared us death, but run-in’s were always epic!
Ok so sabaros is the pizza I rember this was maybe 1973-6? Anyone else rember the mall monster I saw him few times he had a red orange tint skin hair clothes he was huge had beard probably giant homless guy but I dont no there was somthing outer wordly about him
Asian Gifts was definitely its own place. Went there all the time. Barricinis was another store. And wasn’t there a Bentley’s Luggage?
Thanks for the info!
Rubin’s Luggage (later became Block’s).
I use to deliver papers in the mall to all the stores Asian gifts was down the Sears wing a pizza parlor was right next store and the birdcage was right there too
Thanks for the contribution! We’ve now added Asian Gifts to the list.
OMG! I remember Thom McAn! I believe that’s where I got my “earth shoes”, if that is what they were called! They were my favorite shoes!! And I loved Record World, had to run in to get my 45’s all the time!
Glad we could help you remember, Eileen! 🙂
Thom McAn had a nickelodeon. We used to watch it for a nickel. It was an old, OLD “movie”.
Macy’s had a jukebox in the petite section. They purchased it from my Dad who ran the Wurlitzer piano store.
Macy’s also had an intercom system that broadcasted throughout the mall.
Here’s how I learned about it;
One evening my father sent me out to find my Mom. He needed her back at the store (Wurlitzer). He told me to look in Martin’s (a store of fashion) so that’s where I went. She wasn’t there.
I looked in Macy’s calling out;”Mom! Mom!”
The employees of Macy’s asked if I was lost. I told them no but I was looking for my mom because SHE was lost.
Well they figured I was a cute confused kid and took me upstairs (Macy’s only had 2 floors then) to the main office to broadcast over the mall intercom that a young boy was lost. I argued that I wasn’t lost, my mom was. They laughed.
My father heard the announcement and was furious because he had to leave the store to get me.
It was so horrible at the time but so funny today!
wow. I learned organ at
an early from a great teacher named mark tomaselli who worked at the organ store which was by the A and S across from an arts and crafts store . I wonder what happened to him.
Great site and memories from the Smith Haven Mall! I worked there while I was at Sachem High School in the late 70’s at a store named Intrigue (owned by Spencer Gifts). In the early 80’s I worked at GNC, which I believe was there in the 70’s as well.
Thanks for the kind words and for sharing those memories, Charlie. Much appreciated.
At GNC around that time there seemed to be an endless amount of vitamins, protein mixes, and other supplements claiming a weight lifter can put on a lot of muscle.
I went to high school at Sachem with a guy named Charlie Matarasso.
I remember across from “time out” there was that pet store…puppies in the window, and there was an stereo store towards the front of the mall I think it was called (lafayetts), also there was a gym in the mall I think a jack lalane or something like that.
Thanks for contributing those confirmations, Mike!
Yes Lafayette’s!! Used to love to stop in and play “Mars Lander” on the TI computers.
Of course I remember Lafayettes,,that where I got my CB and stero for my car. Anyone remember Friendly Frost or the Tobaconist where at age 9 I bought cigars for my father..Ah the good old days.
Also lets not forget the restaurant outside of the mall Coco’s and the Plankhouse…Or good old Service Merchandise as well.
Yep Lafayette and Cocos. There was a Toys R Us and a mom and pop computer shop in that strip mall with Service Merchandise.
My sister (Miss Wurlitzer) ran Lafayettes during her college years. They used to give her the latest equipment to try at home. We had the latest in electronics!
I worked in Toys R Us. When people called the store all the phones rang. it was anyone’s job to answer them.
We had a very mean manager. (He was almost as bad as the manager I had working at Macy’s) One day I picked up the phone and insulted the caller. They demanded to know who I was and I told them I was the store manager and gave them HIS name. He was fired.
That’s how its done!
Layfayette was in the wing that was the shortest, IIRC.
holiday spa….. confirmed
“DIFFERENT STROKES FOR DIFFERENT FOLKS” THAT IS THE QUOTE JOHN DOUGAL SR. NAMED THE STORE AFTER !!
I can’t count how many movies I saw there, but i know one of them was Disney’s Fantasia… I remember walking out thinking “What the hell was that”…
Now, that’s funny. 🙂 The movie I remember most vividly was Rocky II. The reason being, right as my family was walking into the theater, some kid walked out and said loud enough for everyone to hear “It was so cool when Rocky won!” … sigh.
Thanks for sharing that!
Back to the Future
Many more I’m sure but those are what I remember.
Fiddler on the roof. Christmas Eve. With all the Jewish people.
Rocky in the theatre was awesome!!!
Apocalypse Now !!
What about smithaven ministries?
I used to live within walking distance of the mall and was in the sixth grade when the first stores (Macy’s and A&S) opened. Macy’s gave out buttons that said “I like A&S the best” under which, in small print, it said “next to Macy’s”. A&S gave out similar buttons with the store names switched. Since the mall was so close to home it was routine to walk over there and just hang out. Loved to go looking in Sam Goody’s, get an ice cream at Barracini’s, etc. There was another ice cream shop in the small hallway just off the main Sear’s entrance, but I don’t remember the name.
One shop that’s missing from the list above is Zum Zum, a restaurant that served German food. It was down near the entrance to Macy’s. I think there was also a Castro’s Convertibles nearby.
Thanks for sharing your memories, John! Always appreciated.
In the late 70’s, maybe 1980 (I was still in high school so that’s how I generally know the timeframe) a Beefsteak Charlie’s opened. All the beer, wine and sangria you could drink. Does anybody else remember this? The reason I remeber is because we were awful – we’d get a big group, drink our faces off and then skip out on the bill, one by one. Kids are so stupid- then we’d go back, the same group of kids, and do it again and again, until they finally nailed us. Duh!
Steak and Brew (which I helped open in early 73 ) went Chapter 11 in mid 1975… They renamed it Beefsteak Charlie’s in September ( same owner Larry Ellman)…I worked there between 73 and 78…. I always enjoyed a slice of pizza down at Espresso Pizza before my shift…lol
“Steak and Brew and Steak and Brew” is what the sign outside the mall read. I don’t know why. Inside everyone shelled peanuts and threw the shells on the floor.
I remember riding a baby elephant down in the pit before they filled it in…
Very nice, Kevin!
Me too! Nobody believes me when I tell them that I rode an elephant in the Smith Haven Mall. Why would I make that up anyway?! Thanks for the valedation
Lol yes the Elephant !!
There were elephants. A petting zoo or circus would occasionally frequent the mall.
There were lions (my parents have pictures) and ostriches and lamas and goats. They filled the center ring (the arena) with hay.
The mall smelled like a barn yard!
expresso pizza on the sears side and hermans side of the mall
nuts n stuff on the macys side
There was also a center booth called “Fluff & Stuff” that sold (“Collect Them All!”) little palm-sized floppy stuffed animals. I collected them all……
I’ve been reading through all these posts looking for anything about Fluff N Stuff, just to be sure I didn’t dream it up. It was heaven on earth to me! All that Hello kitty stuff and the stuffed animals. I loved it!
Hell yeah! I loved fluff n stuff!. Forgot about that.
My dad was co-founder/owner of Fluff n Stuff chain. As a kid I used to help out delivering huge bags of stuffed animals etc for the Christmas season to.all the stores in the different malls.
Unfortunately my earliest memories are from about ’88-89 when we moved to Smithtown. I was only 4-5 years old, but I do vividly remember many stores. My mom used to always park right by the exit by Time Out. I used to beg her every time to let me go play some games. I do remember the food court having tons of windows all over the roof. It’s all changed now, unfortunately. I went back and can’t even recognize it anymore. KB toys was also a favorite.
Thanks for sharing your memories with us, Rachael!
I remember the big bird cage and the elevator before the food court was installed, I also remember riding an elephant in the center ring area of the mall, which I believe, is where the big bird cage was originally located.
Ah, the many family dinners at Beefsteak Charlies, what I didn’t realize at the time is that it was alll you can drink (beer/wine) on Sundays so no wonder my parents dragged us there, I thought it was for the unlimited shrimp!
It may have been more of an 80’s thing but does anyone remember hiding out in “Zappas Dungeon” and smoking, then spending the day in Time Out playing games?
Great memories, Chris! Thanks for sharing them.
Beefsteak Charlie’s (near McCrory’s outside entrance) had all the beer, wine and BIRCH BEER you could drink. Also; they served peanuts. you shucked and threw the shells on the floor. (I remember the cockroaches well!). Beefsteak Charlie’s became Steak and Brew. (Their sign actually said; “Steak and Brew and Steak and Brew” I don’t know why.)
Coco’s was next to where Chase Bank is now behind the mall. (I think its Fortunoff’s lawn furniture now.)
I don’t remember Beefsteak Charlies having peanuts. That was Ground Round which wasn’t in the mall. We went there all the time. For 19 dollars we got chicken teriyaki and all you can drink beer and shrimp and salad! One time they started new commercials on TV with Charlies son – Beefsteak Chuck. Our waiter told us it was because Beefsteak Charlie had cancer (not true)
I just happened to stumble upon this wonderful page/ blog about the Smith haven Mall in the 70’s! I also remember that BIG BIRD Cage! It had a lot of plants in it. And if I remember right, talking parrots?
Cardinal Ties!! Tiny little tie store, in the movie theater ” wing” , but on the opposite side. 🙂 And Martins Department store! Had an escalator in the middle of the store.
Also, Sid’s Pants was next to Foods of All Nations!
Thanks for that info, Nancy! Always appreciated!
Food of all Nations had the best coffee. Which now brings back memories of Gloria Jeans the coffee store.
Fluf n Stuf
Don’t forget Pants Place Plus. They were next to Macy’s. Spent many a paycheck there!
It’s been driving me crazy trying to remember a store that was in the SHM when I was younger. It was called “s s s sassy” and it was full of hello kitty stuff. It was her and all her little friends. It was in a corner store and if I’m not mistaken it left and they turned it into a journeys sneaker store. If someone remembers it then please let me know because I’m starting to think that I’m going crazy. Thank you
Don’t forget Zum Zum, Rubins luggage , The plum Tree down by Sears, and orange Julius
I worked at lechters in the 90’s but remember a lot from when I was a kid in the 70’s.
This End Up (across from time out) Anthonys Pizza (opposite Orange Julius on sears wing near center) and the Metal foil art Manniquins by the glass elevator that had flashing neon behind them. That used to scare me as a kid. There was an appliance store by sears called Frost King I think (very early 70’s). There was Audio Den, also EAB. There were some old photos of the mall at the mall management office, second floor by elevator when it was run by G + G management in the 90’s. Who knows if Simon management left them up when they took over in the 2000’s.
Lots of great info there. Thanks for sharing!
Great job! The stores I miss most….Asian Gifts, Import Alley, Beefsteak Charlie’s and Wick and Sticks…yeah you have your Pier 1s and Yankee Candles, but they just lack something these stores had. Thanks for the memories!
It would be great if you could do something for the South Shore Mall too. I remember as a kid being amazed by the huge bird cage they had in the middle of the place…you won’t see that anymore!
By reading others, I guess it was the Smith Haven that had the birdcage!
wow again will have to think about this but i can remember shooting pucks at john tonelli in the center (prob early 80s). but for sure i bought my 45s at sam goody in the 70s.. my mom loved orange julius, boaties from thom mcann… dang great site
I jnow the mall opened befire April 1969. I git married the and bought all my clothes there for my honeymoon
I remember most of the stores on the list too. Asian Gifts and Import Alley were definitely two different stores. Import Alley was in the hallway very close to Macy’s and Asian Gifts was in the hallway near Sears. Also, on Rte 25 before turning to go down the roadway to park outside of Sears, there was a Korvette’s store too. Does anyone remember that? 🙂
It didn’t stand for “eight Jewish Korean Veterans as the rumor would have you believe. The founders used their first names initials E and J and Korvettes came from the name of a battleship “Corvette”.
They were a little store in NYC that was laughed at by the large chain stores. Eventually they became the number 1 department store. They made more money from their electronics and record departments. The man who created those departments was Max and he used his name backwards as a brand name for their electronics; XAM.
Korvettes rivaled Billy Blakes, TSS, Modells or Grants and made more money than Sears or Macy’s. Korvettes held the food chain; Hills Supermarkets. (One was located north of the mall in the Rickel’s shopping Center, where Waldbaum’s just closed.)
If you google images you will find one of the SmithHaven Korvettes.
The original Macy’s was only 2 stories. When they added the third the architect didn’t account for air flow. The store got so hot many people passed out.
I was working at Macy’s when it went into bankruptcy protection (1992). It was the most unusual business experience I ever had. No one, NO ONE entered that store for MONTHS. Not a single customer. You knew Macy’s was sunk. Once the pending doom hit the media EVERYONE flocked in. They all wanted to see it before it closed. Customers actually cried. During the proceedings, Macy’s was allowed to stop paying creditors. MANY smaller companies closed as a result of Macy’s debt.
Macy’s negotiated with larger suppliers. These companies agreed to restock Macy’s with new merchandise (floor merchandise was 3 years out of date!) so Macy’s could survive and eventually pay up their debts to these larger companies.
The old merchandise had to go. We were ordered to destroy it. They handed us utility knifes and ordered us to slash all the old merchandise.
I’ll never forget how destructive my Macy’s experience was.
Sorry. This is supposed to be a site of happy memories.
Besides being caught shoplifting at Sears (later I became a manager there), this is my only negative memory of the SHM. 😛
Wow, I recall the XAM branded electronics at korvettes. As a teenager, I was Leary of that brand. Always went with name brand.
The mall monster. Rumor was that he was a chimney sweeper. How about Foods of All Nations by Baskin n Robbins? Mcrorys was the best cut through from the Sears wing to I believe the Macy’s wing. That store seemed so huge. The Macys side actually had seats by the food consession. The pizza was scary looking under the heat lamps.
Thanks for the memories, Fred! I ate at the food counter at McCrory’s many times as a kid, although I think I stayed away from the pizza. 🙂
Good move on the pizza. Friendly Frost was the appliance store. We used to play Odyssey video game in there on their tv..lol The Chins owned Asian Gifts. I know lots about the mall because I practically lived there.
I worked at “Art Frame and Photo World” beginning in 1976 (I was 15 but lied about my age…don’t tell Andre! (The salon owner also owned the art store next door.)
We did custom framing, sold art supplies, sold cameras, and developed photos. I worked there till I went to college, and then on college breaks.
A quick story about the bird cage…
One day when I was working a green parrot flew into the shop. I called the pet store…it wasn’t theirs.Then I called Mall security that told me that it must have escaped the big cage in the center and would probably just fly outside and perish in the cold. He told me if I could catch it I could keep it. Had that noisy unsociable bird for years!
I’ll try to post a photo.
I worked at ArtFrame in the late 80’s and the Craft store in the early 80’s.
I came upon this site because I was just in the Whiney Museum this weekend and they have a whole Alexander Calder exhibit – and I said “Mom didn’t the Smithaven Mall have a Calder sculpture” – forgetting it was actually called Calder Court lol.
How about these stores
Flagg Bros. Shoes
Yes I remember the Mall Monster!
National Shoes is missing from the list.
Didn’t Mcrory’s sell hot dogs? I remember loving their hot dogs (which were probably loaded with sodium). Later on, (90’s) I remember a store that sold a lot of nature-inspired gifts and decor including fancy stones and wind chimes. A lot of native-American inspired stuff. Natural Wonders maybe? And I still have a silver polishing cloth that has the Sterns name on it. Before they closed my mom bought some of their metal clothing display racks and uses them all the time to this day. I worked at the GAP as holiday help in 1998. I saw Titanic for the first time at the smithaven movie theatre and I met a cute guy at Mrs. Fields named David who gave me a free soda. I came back and gave him my phone number and we went out a few times. ; )
Yes, they did sell hot dogs. Ate many of them as a kid. And no, they probably weren’t good for us, but they sure tasted good. Today? Maybe not so much.
My Mom loved Natural Wonders. I remember wacky but cool artwork/decor in food court in the 80s. And VIM!!
And Red Robin and the restaurant in A&S and the soft serve at Barricinis was incredible! And the petting zoo in the sunken in center of the mall!
Sears used to sell candy and pretzels. Would love going there for a treat.
And they used to have a circus in the middle of the mall. Fashion shows also.
Yes I remember the circus in the center pit. They strung a tightrope and trapeze setup across it with a big yellow safety net underneath. It was thrilling to be so close up to the performers!
The SmithHaven Mall had fashion, flower, antique, car, art,and boat shows.
They would feature “stuff” from the girl scouts, boy scouts and local organizations.
The mall, in my memory (as a kid) was a real community place.
Does anyone remember the name of the local (to Long Island) head shops that had the exclusive right to sell the WBAB Homegrow Album?
it was record stop it was on portion road .. by the burger king .. in the strip mall ..we used to cut out of sachem and go buy our albums
Had heard as a kid that someone had put LSD in the mustard at McCrorys(?) and some little kid died! Over the years as I got older thought it was a typical urban legend – has anyone else heard of this??
So is the old; “They were breaking into the mall and fell through the roof and died” story. 😛
I sem to remember Record Town and Record World. Tape World came later.
This is great! remember the Pet store in mccorys.. WAsnt Burger King there for a short time?? N the smell of warm pretzels in sears… Fun! Fun!
wow i do remember the Burger King and i don’t know why we always ate at Sbarros and nothing else… I also remember the wood paths around Macys that looked like roads..i’d just wander around them pretending to be a car.
I used to find the name Bailey Banks and Biddle silly when i was a kid
My second job was there at Kinney Shoes..1984
OMG – this story makes me so happy. I LIVED in this mall in my youth, and started working in Thom McCann at age 16. I also worked in The Cookie Factory, Chess King and His Place (which I don’t think was on your list, but that may have been very early 1980s). Another store you left off, definitely from the 70s, was Sue’s Place – a women’s clothing store. My mother won 2nd place in a chess cake baking contest at Abraham & Straus (in the upstairs balcony restaurant) and Regis Philben gave her her award. I think my mom still has the picture. I will definitely be writing more. Thank you for this.
The clothing store was called; “Susan’s Casuals”. The sign had a flower in it created by NYC artist. Bruce Friedle. When they removed it I tried to get the flower but they destroyed it taking it down.
Friedle work is now becoming quite valuable!
The SHM was planned to incorporated a theme of modern art That’s why so much art existed there. (The collage of stuff suspended in front of the elevator is now in a museum. We called it “the legs” I remember it was featured in our 1973 edition of the World Book Encyclopedia under “modern art”)
Also Baker’s Shoes right in the center, between the A&S & Sears aisles.
And, of course, there was a pet store next to Asian Gifts. We bought a great dog there that lived for 19 years!
Beefsteak Charlie’s was originally Steak n’ Stein.
Actually it was called Steak and Brew….. I worked there from the very beginning ((early 1973 ) . Married in July, 1975 and two months after it went Chapter 11… Changed its name to Beefsteak Charlies
And a family friend of ours always used to refer to Steak and Brew irreverently as “Burp and Slurp” …
In the 70’s and possibly 80’s, my dad and I would go to the mall and enter from the entrance currently where the tools are located. You would walk down the isle to the end where the men’s clothing section is currently located. Back then there were appliances along the right side and a candy booth. Dad would get me pistachio nuts or cashews. Then you would walk through the woman’s section and that would lead into the mall. Nowadays they opened up the center of Sears so you can get the the mall through the jewelry section.
I remember in the mall by Sears, there was this fountain with long wire strands that had glistening beads running down the wires. Read in previous posts about it being oil beads. Would like to see a photo of this fountain.
I remember the elevator in the front of the mall with Lafayette electronics, used to love that store! I had a Lafayette stereo record player with radio and 8 track tape recorder. Taped all my albums that I bought at Sam goody.
I remember mc crorys dept store. Anyone remember the toy called squirmels? It was a furry pipe cleaner type worm on a fishing string. It would appear to move between your fingers as if it was alive. Bought it there, had lots of fun making people think it was real.
I remember squirmels!! It came in either orange or neon green. Such a tough choice as a little kid… Both colors were cool!
As of now, 2016, you can still buy squirmels. They still make them!
I seem to remember them dismantling the oil fountain and putting it into a dumpster,
They were very popular in MUCH smaller versions for the home.
They dripped mineral oil on fishing line.
I actually bought one of the recent squirmels.
In mc crorys, I used to get t shirts printed. It was located near the pizza counter. Someone mentioned a comic book store, I remember buying coins (still have them).
There was another store that would do iron on t shirt transfers. Anyone remember the name?
The other T-shirt store was Different Strokes.
When I worked there (Geez! I worked in almost all the SHM stores!) gangs would come in to have t-shirts made. No other company would make t-shirts with gang logos/emblems on them.
I just didn’t care what they wanted I made EVERYTHING for them.
(Besides their over 200 decals to choose from, there was special felt sheets that could be cut into designs.)
These gang members gave great tips!
Does anyone remember the meeting the Mets there in 1970/71? I was only 7 years old, but remember it was PACKED!
I have many memories.
The “piano store” that everyone is referring to is called Wurlitzer. I used to take lessons from there!! I’ll never forget watching and hearing the player piano play music by itself using those rolls with holes in them. It always amazed me.
I also clearly remember getting a portrait made of me in 1976 by the elevator at the front. The artists name was Buche’ or something like that (it was torture having to sit there for so long). I still have the picture!
We used to ride our bicycles there all the time. There was a bike rack at the entrance and that entrance road seemed like it was 1/8 of a mile long! Now, as soon as you pull into the mall you have to turn left or right.
I also remember buying my first 10 speed bike from Sears as well as playing with Pong and Atari 2600 when it first came out.
Lafayette was the coolest store. I bought an electronics kit from there so I could make my own projects. I also remember that they had a tube tester. We had to test the tubes to repair our tv set when the vertical or horizontal hold would weaken…..remember those days?
How about the Cheese that used to hang from the ceiling in Sbarro pizzeria? I can still smell that place.
These memories are priceless! I really hate the Mall since they updated it.
My father opened the Wurlitzer store.
I posted some details on this site.
We moved to Long Island because my father opened the Wurlitzer store.
The lessons you took were on electric pianos. They had tines that plucked when you pressed the keys and an amplifier picked up the sound.
My father left Wurlitzer and started a chain of stores; All Island Pianos, Piano Organ City and Decker’s Pianos (16 stores in all). He later invented the electronic piano (no tines – all electric) and the touch sensitive keyboard used in all pianos today.)
Chris L,: You either took lessons from him or my Mom who worked there also.
There was a corridor behind Wurlitzer that had many lesson booths. (Only one was ever used so we used the rest to play.)
McCrory’s was across the way and as kids we would sneak over there to distract the poor net-headed ladies .and steal all the half-n-half creamers! Mmmmm! Delicious! LOL!
One day we were playing with Kenner’s Piccados in one of the booths. (It was a toy that plugged into an outlet, heated up like a stove and turned “gobble-d-gook” gel into rubber.) We went over to McCrory’s to steal the Half-n-Half forgetting the Piccado stove was on…….
We set the mall on fire!
What a horrible moment – especially for my Dad!
Although my only real memory of going to Smithtown as a little kid was getting left at this store. I was fascinated with the self playing organs. I don’t recall ever getting kicked out. Those were the days you could leave your 7 year old at a store and not get arrested for child endangerment.
My mother worked in Martins which became Martins/TSS (times Square Stores) for years.
Does anyone remember Friendly Frost (appliance store) ? or the Tobacconist? I remember being 11 and buying my father cigars there. I know it sounds crazy today, but back then all you had to say it was for an adult.
Also the mall had that cool fish tank…That mall was so cool then now it is completely antiseptic and look like any other mall.
Does anyone remember the 2 restaurants off of Nesconset highway in front of the mall Coco’s & The Plankhouse?..which later became El Torito.
Yes! My dad used to buy pipe tobacco at the tobacconist, too. Loved the smell. It was at the end of that wing with those giant leg sculptures. Used to freak me out.
Another store I didn’t see mentioned was Stride Rite shoes.
In the store Different Strokes there were two levels separated only by a few stairs. The upper level was for adults only as they had various you know what paraphernalia there. I remember as a teenager loitering near the stairs waiting for the store clerk to help a customer. I would then sneak up the stairs and check out the stuff.
Ha… my Dad was the owner.
I remember the “stair” up to the display cases. I worked there. Maybe you bought “pipes” from me? (We wouldn’t sell you any if you called them anything else.)
I only saw you in the store when you’d come in and raid the cash registers!
I got the job because my dad knew your dad. (He sold him a piano.)
Everyone employed there was into some sort of “illegal” activity? Hobby?
I was the only virgin in the place…. LOL!
I remember telling very old ladies who wanted to see the paraphernalia that I had to I.D. them!
They LOVED it!
I used to make transfers on shirts for local gangs. No other place would do that for a gang. I charged them the regular price and an additional $20 that I pocketed! (I wasn’t they only one selling stuff and not ringing it up….)
We sold exotic lingerie and the only place to try it on was the bathroom.
I told all the girls they had to come out onto the floor to model it – and they did!
Those were great fun times!
I worked there too in the very early years. Perhaps I sold you a waterbed – or pipe – or some sort of funky oil. What a blast. Great times. Hugh smile just thinking about it 45 years later.
Best to John and Kenny.
The bird cage was in the sears wing and the birds used to get out and fly over peoples heads
I’d love to find a picture of the giant tv you could play in at the Children’s Outlet store…it used to be where i think a Cinnabon is now right outside the exit of Macys.
Does anyone know the name of or anything else about the restaurant that used to be above (I believe) A&S? Was it just “the A&S Restaurant?”
Also, there used to be a comic book shop tucked away inside McCrory’s , don’t know if it had a separate name.
The Abraham and Strauss restaurant had a name but it escapes me.. The shoe department was just before it on the second floor. The restaurant jutted out over the entrance and suspended into the mall. It had a glass wall that folded away and out of view when the store was open.
By the time I worked there the restaurant was closed.
A&S had a small basement level with warped parquet tile. It always flooded and smelled awfully moldy.
They put me to work in the stock room sorting men’s underwear.
The room was to the right of the mall entrance. I was stuck in that dark, concrete, dingy area when all of a sudden the whole building shook!
I came out to see what happened and I was almost run down by stampeding woman!
It was one of the first door-busters events.
I thought the world was coming to an end!
Pianoman, could you post photos from your family’s collection? I am also curious about this mall monster, not sure if I remember him? Any photos? Post photos here or any site, even Facebook. Thank you!
Most of our photos are of the concerts held in front of Wurlitzer.
My sister; Lilli, was “Little Miss Wurlitzer” and would literally walk up and down the pedal board as she played some really funky tunes. She was 7 years old and drew quite a crowd.
My parents have all the photos. (They haven’t opened them since Lilli’s unfortunate death.)
As for the “Mall Monster”, he was one the nicest guy I ever met. I had no reasons to take photos of him. We just had some great chats and I looked forward to him checking out on my register at PMK (Pathmark).
(The cobbler in the back of McCrory’s was also a fascinating old gentleman. He rented space and his equipment was ancient. It was fun to watch him work.)
WOW, i remember Joe (dark glasses and all) the shoe guy from McCrory’s. i talked with him every morning, i worked at McCrory’s as the main shipping/receiving guy from 1986 to 1988. at that time i don’t remember a comic book store, but do remember the T-Shirt shop. what memories.
I went to school with a guy named Alan who used to play on the rotating stage- do yo remember him?
The comic store in McCrory’s was called Serendipity. They also had baseball cards.
McCrory’s rented space to Serendipity collectables. The owner was Roxanna Tuoey. I worked for her for a few years. I am having so much fun reading this.
The A&S restaurant used to have family entertainment, too. I remember Bozo the Clown doing a show there. And each Easter, we’d have Breakfast with the Easter Bunny there.
Bakers and G&G were definitely there in the 70’s. I spent my allowance there and at the pizza place that was next to the McCrory’s entrance, I believe. I remember that I could get a slice and a coke for under a dollar. I bought some feather earrings and brown suede moccasins at the head shop near the main entrance.
i remember when it was a grass field. you can see from Rt25 to Nesconset Hwy. I worked at the Circus snack bar late 60s early 70s serving ice cream & pretzels between after school activity (Sachem). There were two stores,striped walls red & white same as the striped shirts we all wore. Good memories!
I remembered across from Time Out when you cut thru Mcoys 2 entrances 1 had a pizza, fries & hotdogs sit down eaterie
I remember the rainbow shop and the mall monster..was a big homeless man who hung around
He actually wasn’t homeless! Believe it or not he had two sons, a wife and a small home !
Was that the same guy who was always covered in…something? We called him The Dirtman.
How about fluf n stuf
Or childrens place w that little circle you could fit yourself in?
Also i remembr a western store near theentrance near jack la lanne
As well as fountains while walking along and the overpass thing filled with vines a water fountains and parts of mannequin bodies…
Can remember how thrilled everyone was when the Mall was built, till then we would drive into Roosevelt Field, for Easter and school shopping.
Our family was brought out to Long Island so my father could open the Wurlitzer (pianos) store. As kids we practically lived at the SmithHaven Mall. (The name was derived because the mall was built on the Smithtown/Brookhaven townships line.)
The mall opened in 1969. It was an event.
My sister was Miss Wurlitzer. She was 5 years old and drew crowds walking on the pedals of a theater organ as she played the keyboards. The organ was pushed out into the mall for her performances.
We were “mall brats”.
There are a thousand stories I could tell about our escapades at the SmithHaven Mall, the most interesting is when we accidently set the mall on fire.
We were playing with Kenner’s Piccadoos in the back booths of Wurliter and left the little oven on while we raided all the half and half from McCrory’s.
The smoke billowed out and the fire department arrived and evacuated the mall.
There were regular car shows, antique shows, sidewalk shows, flower shows, fashion shows, RV shows…
(The SmithHaven Mall touted itself as “the largest indoor mall” with the “most events”.)
There were restaurants in Macy’s and Abraham and Strauss (and of course McCrory’s).
Macy’s had a toy, pet, book, and electronics departments.
The myth that there was a tunnel to Korvettes across the street were false. The stories about Zappa’s Dungeon were mainly true. (This was an emergency exit that went way back to a stairway, under some stores and came back up. It was never well lit. It must still exist.)
The property was a horse farm and was originally purchased for about $1.5 Million.
In the 1980’s Prudential purchased the mall for about $16 million. (Ironically the man that owned the horse farm parlayed his $1.5 mil into $16 mil also.) Prudential restored the Calder sculpture (mobile) and brought it back into the mall. (It was rotting in an enclosed fenced area on the SE part of the parking lot for years.) (It was later sold for about $1.5 Million.) (There is a picture of a mural taken at the SHM in the 1973 WorldBook Encyclopedia. Our family has some other pictures of the mall.)
I worked in many of the stores at the mall; Frankel’s, Different Strokes, Import Alley, Macy’s, A&S, Block’s Luggage (formally Rubin’s), Sears, Kay Bee Toys, Herman’s.
Some of the stores on the main list did not open when the mall opened. (Some came in the 80’s) Another artist (omitted from this mall history) was Bruce Friedle (NYC) (originator of the 60’s “sunburst”).Sears was not completed when the mall opened.
Some stores I recollect; Orange Julius, Nelson Varon’s, Buster Brown’s, Frankel’s, Seaman’s Bank for Savings, Kinney Shoes, Striderite, Suzie’s Casuals, Sbarro’s, Life Uniforms, Lerner’s Shops, Dalton Books Kinney Shoes.
My father eventually left Wurlitzer and opened 16 piano stores across Long Island.
I was still a brat and anywhere there was a place to explore, I went! (Billy Blakes, Korvettes, Hills, Gertz, Modell’s (White-Modell’s) Pergaments, FoodFair, etc… I always raided their board records and office files. Billy Blakes was the best fun. They closed before liquidating stock became the norm. The shuttered store was completely filled with stock. It was paradise to a kid!)
The corridor leading to the new food court has a second level. The original plan was additional stores on the second floor. (In fact the mall was designed to carry a second level all around.)
I woman jumped off the upper bridge and eventually died from the impact.
The bird cages everyone mentions was originally a cage of monkeys furnished and maintained by Doctor’s Pet Shop. Doctor’s was closed several times for animal neglect.
I could go on and on. It has been fun going back..
Wow Pianoman, thank you so much for sharing that comment. It would seem that you and I have a connection beyond this site.
I am a professional musician who started playing organ around 1974. Because I showed some talent at the time, my parents wanted to invest in a quality instrument. We headed over to the Wurlitzer store at Smith Haven and, after much wrangling while I paced around the store (I was eight) my dad ended up purchasing one of the top of the line models – three tiers, a beautiful instrument. I spent countless hours learning how to play music on that organ and did so for over 20 years.
My sincere thanks to your family for helping to make that possible. I’m glad you have enjoyed the site!
Its really great to hear that.
The SHM came into my life the day it opened and I spent so much time within it. (I think I worked in every store!).
My Dad would appreciate hearing your story.
My father was a concert pianist and violinist. He studied with and accompanied many greats in the industry.
All my life I have heard so many kind words about him from musicians who were helped or inspired by him.
Back in the 60’s I was torn from my safe little life upstate NY and dragged to Long Island because my father had to open Wurlitzer in the SHM.
It was traumatic for me.
Now, reading this site, I can look back with a better perspective of those simpler years and understand that they were wonderful times.
(Especially accidentally setting the mall on fire. Where would this site be if the whole place burned down? LOL!)
I appreciate all the efforts you make to present this site. (Probably more than most people.) I probably contributed more than necessary but
this site is a time capsule and if people don’t contribute then all their memories will be lost forever.
Does anyone remember the name of the make up store in the mall with the hair/nail shop attached? I believe down the sears aisle??? Help!!
Who operated the mall before Simon in 1995? There has to be photo’s of the mall when they 1st opened in 1969. Robert Moses was on hand. Im wondering if the newspapers or local television stations covered the event. Does anyone have pictures of the inside and outside of the mall during the 1970’s
Anyone remember the great Christmas decorations? They had so many animated elves and white cotton snow and Santa’s workshop. I always knew when the holidays were approaching because dad would say, “Do you want to go see the holiday decorations at the mall?” Then we’d go to Sears and play free video games on the Tv’s there.
I worked in Different Strokes way back then. Great place to be and met a nice bunch of girls that worked there. Made tee shirts, sold jewelry,etc.
Great memories – I remember in the 90s a time when “clubbing” was big (husband thinks I’m crazy) there was a clothing store maybe near Macys that used to have a DJ playing. Cant remember the name… anyone else?
I remember it also, but not the name.
The dressing rooms were in the back and up on a platform. There were chairs below for the guys to sit and watch the woman under the dressing room doors.
It was a very “progressive” place.
(Give your husband a Bronx cheer and tell him you are right!)
It was called Scream
It was called Scream
It was a take off of Sweatique which had the best grunge and concert tees to date
My dad used to own Different Strokes.
My Dad also owned a store called Feet Street. Dont see it on the list though.
John, I’ll make sure we add it. Thanks for telling us!
I worked at Feet Street in the late 80s. At that time I believe it was owned by the Bush family who owned Shoes n Things. Spent most of my paycheck there. Loved Foods of all Nations. Saw the Mall Monster all the time. There were so many different stories about him. He kept to himself. Drove a big Lincoln.
Wow — it’s quite gratifying to see many comments already mentioning some of the most memorable things about what I knew as THE mall in my childhood: the artwork, the birdcage that never seemed to cage them all, the Doktor Pet Center (yes, with a “k”), the Wurlitzer store with the rotating platform, the fountains, and so forth. How many times did I cut through McCrory’s to the smell of those hot dogs! We never bought any, though. Our place to eat was the Friendly’s, and it was the first restaurant in which I ever ate on my own.
When I was very little, I often wanted in the worst way to go up to the A&S balcony restaurant, just for the view. My mother would just as often explain that that privilege was reserved for those who’d pay the outlandish price to eat there. (Come to think of it, I rarely saw anyone actually up there anyway!)
My favorite hangouts were the Waldenbooks (one place to kill time while the others shopped), the Time Out (of course, but I watched more often than played), and the KB. For a while, the KB was my chief place to purchase games, until Waterloo opened in Stony Brook. In general, we must have done the most business with Sears; most memorably, we got our first video game console there (an Odyssey), and in later years, a number of the Sears versions of Atari 2600 cartridges. (I laugh to remember that one Play World ad called them “Atari tapes” from their resemblance to 8-track tapes.)
One store I haven’t seen mentioned so far on this thread is Parklane Hosiery — I don’t believe we ever went in there, but it was located right between a department store and an exit corridor; it was just a storefront that I remember often seeing in the background while I was sitting around waiting for others.
How interesting…. How would you, a young boy, ever remember about Parklane Hosiery?
LOL! It was there!
My, The things we remember…..:P
I was there in 1969 as SHM was just opening.I remember Baker’s Shoes and 2 park Lane hosiery stores. My Mom worked at Martin’s (now Penney’s) for many years in the fine China department. In the days of Sunday blue laws,the towns of Brookhaven and Smithtown were operating with 2 different rules. Martin’s, being right on the two towns borders,had to close half the store that was in Smithtown only on a few Sundays.
THANKS for the memories!
Wow, Mary Ellen!
I lost thought of the Blue Laws.
My dad was a leader in that fight!
I remember all the summons he got for opening shop!
OMG! What memories just came flooding back! I remember sitting in the center circle of the mall with a friend and smoking cigarettes. We were only 15 and I was practicing blowing smoke rings. Needless to say, my mother happened to be shopping there and saw us. She came right up to me and grabbed me by the ear. The ride home was a doozy! I loved that mall. Beefsteak Charlie’s was awesome! When I turned 18 (the legal age to drink back then), I remember going with friends to eat there and getting the all you can eat peel your own shrimp and pitchers of tap beer. Those were the days!
Stroll-n-shop/mall information booth/lost & found/security guard station: I worked there with my sister & mother in the 1970’s. Great memories. There was a Tuxedo shop & I remember Joel Gray being there. Also, members of foghat, riff raff, & twisted sister shopping there. And I went to school with the Dougals that owned Different Strokes.
Wow, that was my mall while growing up. I loved that place. Used to hang out there all the time with sister and friends. I remember all those stores. I loved seeing all the interesting things in the ,’Intrigue’store. They were owned by Spencers and was similar but better imo and was down another wing of mall from Spencers. Mcrorys used to sell food too. I didnt care for Time Out..too scary inside. Always went to Sbarro for pizza or Friendlys. Dad used to drop us off at mall and we would be there all day. Artwork was cool and interesting in a way but I didnt like it as a kid. I never really liked abstract so it didnt make sense to me. I remember the giant leg at the entrance and the neon signs of the guy tumbling. I used to think all that was strange..very odd. Found out later on that much of it was done by famous artists like Calder from a boyfriend of mine who knew him. Such fond memories of SHM and of growing up around there in LI. (Ronkonkoma) in ’60’s and ’70’s. when everything felt fresh and new and unexplored..down to earth yet exciting. I’d do it again in a heartbeat.
Does anyone remember what restaurant was at SHM at Friday’s location
That was a Red Robin back in the late 80’s and early 90’s
The guy that ran Andre’s Head Factory was the biggest degenerate horseplayer I ever saw. I was a 14 year old kid at the time and used to sneak into the OTB (in the shopping center next door where Pathmark was). Andre would come in with hundreds or thousands of dollars, blow it on the ponies in a few hours and then throw stuff, curse and storm out. Ended up bankrupting that place.
I later worked at the Walden Books in the mall, managed it for a year before I went back to graduate school.
That’s SO funny, bc my older sister had a friend who was like, a shampoo girl or something there (they were 10 years older than me) and she used to always say how much she thought her boss did drugs — b/c he was always leaving in the middle of the day, sometimes he’d take cash right out of the register, and he always came back all tensed and hopped up — like he’d get high and then get mad!! This is too funny to realize that he actually just had a gambling problem. I had totally forgotten this until I read your post!!! LOL! (B/c of his behavior she alway’s called it “Andre’s Head Case”). LOL
My mom used to LOVE going to McCrory’s when I was a little kid and she would always bring me along. It remember it would take her HOURS to go from the Macy’s side to the Sears side while shopping! Sometime after the cafeteria on the Macy’s side closed, they opened up a smaller concession on the Sears side selling mostly (only?) hot dogs. Where was the food court before Calder Court opened in the 80s? I assume there was one because my mom would leave me to eat at McCrory’s and come back to join me a few minutes later with some other food from the mall. The food at McCrory’s wasn’t good enough for her but apparently it was good enough for me! Lol
I remember when Spencer’s Gifts was so popular in the 80’s, they opened up a second store in another part of the mall and called it Spencer’s II!
I never understood Spencer’s.
All sorts of things happened at the mall(s) that parents objected to.
Parents are so concerned about exposing their kids to all sorts of “bad” things.
But Spencer’s, where your kid can touch, feel, small and taste the most vulgar things is always so acceptable!
LOL! Go figure!
I always wondered if I put on some of the things they sold right in their stores would they ask me to leave? LOL!
One day I might be tempted to try it. (How does the edible underwear sound?)
My mom worked in A&S for many years and we used to walk around the entire mall while she worked back in the early to late 70’s, McCrory’s, Pet Doctor and Ice Cream in the restaurant up above the A&S Department Store are always good memories.
When did Lum’s restaurant open there? It was across from Marine Midland bank on the Macy’s wing. Thanks.
Also the Pet Store…Dr Pet
meant for regular comments. Don’t know how it got here. LOL
Disregard my last comment. I was thinking of Zum Zum. Lum’s was a restaurant in upstate NY (where my parents liked to take us in the 70s).
I didn’t see it mentioned here but there was also a store that sold sewing machines. Not sure if it was the fabric store or Singer. Anybody remember? It was in the sears wing. My dad bought my mother one for Christmas.
Also didn’t see any references to the enormous Christmas decoration in the pit. I absolutely LOVED it!! It was a huge tree type thing with all kinds of characters and reached the ceiling. It was magical to me…
I also remember the “blue laws” that split up the mall, half was closed on sundays and half opened. Some stores had late nights. I worked at Sbarro, Thom McCann and Macy’s. That was the early 80s tho.
Frankel’s Fabric Store next to Wurlitzer.
Upstairs (remember the elevator by the movies at the front of the mall?) was the SmithHaven Ministries, a social services kinda place with a youth center in the back, called The Backroom. I worked there in HS as a Youth Aide. Also worked in Herman’s for seven years. They used to have petting zoos in the big sunken circle in the center. There also used to be a small kiosk that had potato knishes and big soft pretzels.
Chandlers Shoes. I remember my older sisters shopping there.
This is a great blog. Lived in Smithtown from ’68 to ’85.
For some reason I remember, as a young kid in the late 70’s, people from Jack La Lane in the hallway by the movie theater and I’m wondering if it was a gym prior to the movie theater. In the mid 80’s I believe there was Casual Corner and Up’s and Downs. I worked at both in the mid to late 80’s but think they were there years before I was employed.
It was right next to the movie theater I was a member
Has anyone mentioned Buckner’s bridal shop? Nor sure when it opened but I bought my wedding gown there in 1988.
Purchase my wedding gown there in 1984
Not sure if this was mentioned, but Foxmoor was a juniors clothing store. It was a western style decor with dark wood. Stayed around well into the 90’s!
Rainbow? Brooks ? &G&G
Here’s a right up about the mall on a blog called Mall’s of America. It includes a pic.
Never mind the picture, it’s the same one you already have.
Does ANYBODY have a photo of the Neon Diver that was at the exit by the movie theater ?
Does ANYBODY have a photo of the neon Diver at the entrance of the mall in the 70’s ? There was also a big LEG
This site is terrific!
I worked as a “photographer” in a small booth taking pictues of babies.It was located in the isle/ hallway.Can’t rember the name of it but it’s not on the main list of stores.1974/1975.it was not a store front , really a miniature photo studio .
I had my photo taken there when I was little. They actually used a copy of it in one of their display cases.
that was a part of the Sears portrait studio but it called Cromaloy. I worked there in the late 70’s. The boss was named Ken a raging alcoholic
I remember UPS n downs, a women’s clothing store and parklane a wonderful store that sold dance apparel- ballet shoes, etc. I absolutely loved the mall. My grandmother and i used to watch the great fashion shows they would have in the center. Things remembered has bern there many years and is still there. There was also a Gloria jeans coffee bean. Wonderful, incredible memories
Sorry, there was no Stern’s in the seventies. Stern’s replaced A&S in the mid 90’s. Also there was no Sbarro’s Pizza in the seventies. Sbarros came with the malls renovation in the late 80’s when they added the food court. The Pizza Parlor was halfway between Center Mall and Sears just past the McCrory entrance and it was called Express Pizza. It was one of the first stores in the mall. There was also Century Mall Theater, Flagg Bros Shoes. Also Smithaven Ministries located upstairs. Thanks for jogging my memory with your great post.
Sbarro’s was definitely there in the early 80’s, near the front entrance and across from the movie theater. I worked there from ’82-’84
I remember Sbarros there in the 70s. Must have been one of their first stores in “the suburbs”
I remember Sbarros there in the 70s. Must have been one of their first stores in “the burbs.”
Doktor Pet, StrideRite, Gap and B. Dalton Books are all missing.
I worked at Sbarros in 1978 and it had been there for years before. Remember the fake salamis and provolones hanging from the ceiling?
Also the pet store..Dr. Pet
Any one recall the name of the book store by Sears from the 70’s and 80’s? I recall Waden Books was in the A&S wing.
Omg I know this is an old thread, but my favorite place when I was a kid in the 70s was a boutique store called Fluff n Stuff, had tons of Hello Kitty items and stuffed animals felt magical to me!
When we were kids, my friends and I walked to Smith Haven Mall all the time in the summer. It would take us about an hour.
Here’s a blast from the past: we lived to go to a costume jewelry shop called Gracious Living. My sister worked at Herlou Card Shop in high school. My dad loved Zum Zum hot dogs. My mom was forever dragging us into Frankel’s.
There WAS a real restaurant tucked away up inside Sears on their second floor. They had good cheeseburgers. I remember a lot of white wrought iron in the restaurant, like it was trying to promote some garden party atmosphere.
Casual Corner was a store I loved, but came late 70’s,
Yes I remember that restaurant, it was delicious
I grew up going to SHM, from 2nd grade on up. In HS, I worked at Mrs. Fields, then Lechter’s from 1988 to 1989. My sister worked at The Gap.
Yes, the Mall Monster. I would always freeze when I saw him. My friends and I were truly frightened of him. Someone once told me he lived in “the dungeon” under the mall.
When I was in grade school, there was a store (Import Alley?) where we’d buy stickers for our sticker collection. They had the best selection of “puffy” and “smelly” stickers.
I bought my first pair of “Zips” at Smith Haven (the first ones with the velcro). I remember we’d shuffle our feet on the playground to make the trade-mark “Z” as seen in the commercials.
At one point, Sam Goody’s had an intimidating machine in-store where you could purchase “singles” and the machine would somehow record your selections onto a mixtape (cassette!).
I once got a spiral perm at Andre’s because I wanted to look like Janet Jackson.
I remember the protests in front of the movie theater when “The Last Temptation of Christ” came out. Still haven’t seen the movie.
My brother was once hanging out with some friends from high school when one of them walked up with a live chinchilla stuffed inside his jacket. Apparently, the friend had stolen it from the pet shop in McCrory’s. They all yelled at him to return it, so the guy went back (or so they thought). — Fifteen years later, my brother ran into the chinchilla-thief at a local bar– turns out the guy never returned it, had kept it as a pet, and the dang thing was still alive.
Did not see Fluff n’ Stuff on the list. (Stuffed animals/toys). I may be getting my malls mixed up but I’m pretty sure this store was at Smith Haven Mall
Mr Tux? There was a tuxedo shop
The health spa Jack LaLanne was upstairs
I worked at Carol Jewelers which was around the center of the mall and later Sylann Jewelers until 1979. Great time in my life. My mom for many years worked at Pzaz, an upscale party dress store. I seem to remember some art hung high that had lady’s leg and lips.
I have some great pics of Smithaven Mall from the early 1980s scanned from Kodachrome 64 slides to post.
Mom would go and get feta cheese from some import shop in the back in 70’s anyone remember name?
i worked in McCrory’s many yrs in 1970 and the IRS has no record of me working there ,mmmm and they cashed my check every week .
What was the name of the collectibles store in the Macys wing that sold Lladro etc
It was Kotliars Treasures smothing or other. Owned by the same people who owned the Hallmark store in another wing of the mall.
I go way back. Once and very briefly, a non-profit occupied a space that allowed kids (usually drug users or hippie types) to come spend time and chill. Think it was called Smith Haven Ministries. Was on the second floor and didn’t even have a sign at the entrance. Bit of a dive with mattresses on the floor. Went with a friend who was meeting someone else. Also recall a beautiful movable art display that featured mercury beads ( I think) that traveled up and down strings that ran maybe 20 feet straight up. Someone cut the strings and destroyed the piece. Remember the outrage the grownups expressed. I too, was saddened by it. Possibly my first exposure to vandalism.
None of my friends remember the big TV play fort in the children’s outlet with the hole in the wall you could sit in out front..right by Macys..wish there was a picture
I remember the hole in the wall! I remember being very small and getting super cranky if another kid was sitting in it…I mourned its loss.
Not directly Smithhaven related, but there was a Nathan’s in Commack with a tiny door next to the larger door that felt similarly geared to my size. I felt very seen by those features.
Add Adler Shoes for Men to the list. It was one of the original stores, on one of the corners of the round Central area, a store or two away from Fanny Farmer Candies and around the corner from Singer, where you could buy Simplicity Patterns and, incongruously, a top-20 45 and cheap blank cassette tapes from the “International Recotape Corporation” or IRC. In the mall was an old fashioned Nickelodeon. Three promotional events I recall: NY Telephone has a temporary kiosk where you could test push button “Slimline” phones! Two, for mother’s day when the mall was still quite new they gave away saplings. The crowd was enormous and got restless. It became a free-for-all. We snagged three of them. None survived. Finally, Adler sold Hush Puppy brand shoes. When the mall opened they had a crib on the sales floor with a Bassett Hound puppy that would be given away at some point. They also gave away a transistor radio with every purchase.
I wasn’t born yet in the 70s, but I went here in the late 80s and mid to late 90s a lot and it’s changed so much. The stores are so blah now. The mall had personality back in the 80s and 90s. There was one store I remember going to as a child, it had some weird stuff in it, and lots of bright neon colors, they sold Hello Kitty stuff and lots of it, and judging by the list of stores here I’m guessing it was Import Alley? But I can’t find pictures of that place anywhere. But I miss the mall I knew as a child. The only stores left from back then are Sears and Macy’s. :-/
I think the store you are thinking of was called Ssassy, or something like that. It was on a corner by the food court? It sold stuffed animals and a lot of the Sanrio/Hello Kitty items. It was one of my favorites when I was a kid. Some people have mentioned a store called Fluff n Stuff, and I’m not sure if that is the same store and it changed names?
Fluff n stuff was one of those little mini box type stores set up in the middle of an aisle glass on all sides and I’d walk around and around looking from the outside to pick what I wanted inside!! Still have my Hagen Renaker China animals purchased there!
Love this outfit. I think it’s so perfect for the flower show. And those earrings are divine!
I took sewing lessons in 1969 at the Singer Sewing Store. I think it was near A & S.
I spent a goid amount of time upstairs in the Ministry. There wasn’t a super religious vibe at the time,just somewhere typical teenager could go to feel okay with the world. Made it through,thanks to that place.
I remember that the mall closed at 330 on Sundays and around 1030 at night and before the food court the leather shop across from different strokes and Sbarro which back then was the best those stores were out Hangouts waiting out front for a ride or we used to get in the elevator and ride up and down. I miss the days when businesses would close on Sundays the streets in ronkonkoma would be quiet, there used to be an abandoned mall across the street from the front of the mall. I was most definitely a mall rat. All the way to I was in my late teens you would meet friends there. Game room mc crorys ( the cut through)lol I remember the long reflecting pools in the middle of the aisles that people threw change into and sometimes people! Orange Julius hangout. It was such an amazing mall that had character. I have not thought of the mall like this in years thank you for bringing back great memories!!
My husband, Paul, was talking to me about the Smith haven mall’s Christmas displays, back in the 70’s. So, I was trying to maybe find information or pics of it to show him, and I found this great site via google. He remembers John Vogel! Ha! He also enjoyed me reading these comments to him. He has fond memories of the Christmas displays, there, one in particular, where hand sculpted elves were riding some serpentine rails in sleighs as a center display, like a roller coaster…leaving him in awe as a child, and giving him a lasting memory to this day! 1/1/2020! Happy New Year!!!
anybody have pictures of car shows from 1970s inside mall, pink panther car etc
There was a fabric store I think it was Fabric Plus maybe?? It was next to the piano store..There was Hallmark , B Daltons, and another bookstore that I can’t remember…. the old movie theater,….. God I miss those days- when going with my parents to the mall was so fun ….. memories ❤️
That “Center Court” as noted with seating was actually a planned huge “Water Fountain” originally when the mall first opened. It had four 3″ diameter water pipes aiming upward to the large skylight dome. Unfortunately, after testing it a couple of times, the engineers gave up. They didn’t consider the incredibly large volume of water skyrocketing upward, which ultimately sprayed well outside the large center circle. I was only 7 in autumn of 1969, but was one of the rare few that saw the tests and felt the spray.. well.. everywhere! 🙂
the pizza place was the best! It was the best part of going to the mall. that and throwing coins in the fountain. great time to be a child!
there was a movie theater before the food court . I worked at Frankel’s home furnishings for a while it was next to Mccrorys.
Brooks, casual corner, kids store with a big slide by a&s
Wow, all these comments are bringing back memories and helping me remember what I had forgotten! My friends and I started going to this Mall in 1970 when we were 14 yrs old. We picked up the bus on Hawkins Ave almost every Saturday at 10:00 am and didn’t return till about 4:00pm.
My favorite store was Sam Goody! I used to buy the 45 records and LP’s there.
Also, there was a store called Singers that sold 45 records. So weird, not too many people knew that. Who would ever think that a sewing machine store would sell records?
And A & S had a Ticket Tron up stairs!
Sure wish there were more pictures of this Mall back from the 70’s!
There was a Sterling Optical. I got my first pair of glasses there in 1970 when I was 10.
Going to the Smith Haven Mall was an event when I was a very small child .My Aunt and my Mother (in my Aunt’s Brown 68 Coupe DeVille)and myself. We would enter through Macy’s, and there were black tiles in progressively smaller and smaller triangles as one entered the store. I particularly remember chairs in the shape of brightly colored hands, probably in the salon or perfume area. We would frequently lunch at Zum Zum, where one could partake of delicious hot dogs with caraway seed, served on metal plates. I loved that, and loved the metal plates. I also remember the beautiful brass fountains in the center of the mall, and their spray of white water.There was another restaurant, more of an event type place, where we would sometimes lunch. very dark, amber lights, very 70s. My Mother and my Aunt would each have a Brandy Alexander with their lunch. I was always allowed a sip.
As their radio commercial said…..”The Head Factory…..For the BEST head you’ve EVER had.”
Used to ride my bike with my friends to the Smith Haven Mall almost every weekend! That place was great! Often hit up Sbarro’s Pizza there too.
I remember Darth Vader came to the mall right after the original Star Wars came out. I stood on line for three hours to get an autographed poster, and by the end all he could do was wave (his hand was tired). I still loved the poster, though. It could’ve been the original costume for all I knew, there were SO many people there lined up in the square right where Sears is (was) now. Does anyone else remember this?
I also remember the fountains, the coins people threw in them, and all the plants! There were benches too, so you could sit down. Now the center aisles are all filled with kiosks selling junk.
I remember the giant mobiles in the food court, and the Burger King right at the end of one of the wings. And the restaurant/food court above A&S (?) that had tables looking out over that wing of the mall.
One store nobody mentioned yet was called “Topkapi” (or close to that), and it sold all kinds of junk jewelry and bracelets and such. And of course Things Remembered, where you could get just about anything engraved for a more personalized gift.
That theater holds so many memories for me. Playing the Zaxxon machine out front, while waiting to see Rambo II or the Karate Kid. Damn. Where did all the years ago?
Is it me, or were things just so much better when we were kids? I’m pretty sure this mall is within months/years of shutting down for good.
Cocos and The Plankhouse! I wish they were still there.
On the second floor where the Smithhaven Ministries were, there was also an employment agency. I got a temp job from them, working inventory at Korvettes. Oh, the memories. Love this site.
How about Baker’s shoes and the huge Christmas tree in the center. I worked at Brooks Fashions in the mid to late ‘80’s. So many memories.
I worked at Zum Zum from 1974-75 and next to it was The Piazza Rest. and Peking Garden Chinese Restaurant…..many memories!
I had an Uncle who worked at National Shirt Shop in the 70’s.
The appliance store in the mall was Friendly Frost. Lafayette was located down the street from the mall.
I recalled what the previous person said about the pins a&s had saying Macy’s is the best store after A&S and vice versa. I babysat a lot back then so I could buy cool fashionable clothes my mother wouldn’t. A&s and macys and my awesome blue suede boots from Bakers, Clark’s and Frye boots from Florsheim. Thought Zum Zum was cool liked the plates and wood. I remember taking the bus from smithtown to hang out there. Remember Spenser’s. Was told when mall first opened someone laced the condiments in front of mccrorys with LSD
Not exactly the mall, but now that IHOP has closed in the Smith Grove shopping center that’s next to the mall, does anyone remember if there was something at that location before IHOP? I feel there was a fast food place there first.