Green River Star -

By STEPHANIE THOMPSON
People Editor 

Too many store closures

 

April 25, 2018



With the impending closure of yet another store in Rock Springs, this time Herberger’s, I can’t help but think am I being forced to shop online.

Over the years, I have tried to remain faithful to stores in both Green River and Rock Springs. Many people seem to think that shopping local means just mom and pop shops, but for me it’s always been about supporting what we have whether it’s a chain or not.

My reasoning is simple. Within the last few years, many long-serving and big-name businesses in Sweetwater County have closed -- Payless Shoes, Pamida, Famous Footwear, JC Penney, K-Mart, Sports Authority and Hastings.

To me, this is just nuts!

We are a large enough county to have these stores and more and yet they keep closing. What’s really sad is the vacant buildings left throughout the county. I can only hope these structures are purchased by a new business so they don’t become a blighted eye sore in the communities.

As some of my favorite stores started shutting, I’ve had to start ordering things from their websites if I wanted their brand of clothing. I have been to most of the new stores that have opened over the recent years such as T.J. Maxx, Ross and Shopko, but sometimes these places just don’t have want I want.

The news of this latest closure really hit me hard. To me, JC Penney and Herberger’s were on the same level for shopping. With both of them gone, that doesn’t leave any store like them in the county.

What’s worse is it was at those stores where I would buy a lot of Christmas gifts, including men’s dress shirts, ties, jeans, socks and under shirts.

This leaves me wondering: am I going to have to do all of that online now? Will I have to plan a trip to Salt Lake City to purchase things I want? I don’t really like either of those options.

I’ve online shopped for quite a while now for things I can’t find in town, but it’s always a hassle if the item isn’t what you expected and you need to ship it back. The problem -- it literally costs more to ship some items back than those items are worth. That’s nuts too.

I’ve been at the post office ready to return an item only to find out I am going to get a whole $2 refund by the time I pay shipping.

I just told the post office employee to forget it. I wound up giving those items with the tags still on them to local thrift stores. I’m sure it was appreciated, but to me it was a waste of money.

As for SLC, I am not one of those people who wants to drive down to Salt Lake spend all day shopping and drive back. The whole thought is just too exhausting.

I am more of a go to SLC, spend a couple of days and come back type of a person. When you start factoring in gas and hotel rooms, it’s not really an option either. That leads me to think of only one option -- we need to get businesses here to replace the ones we’ve lost.

I, like many others I know, have a wish list of businesses I’d like to see come here.

However, at this point, even if it isn’t my favorite store or on my wish list, not many stores could be worse than a vacant building.

 

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