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Hometown shopping vital to small communities PDF Print E-mail
Written by Randy Hale   

Dear Editor,

I’m writing this letter to the editor to thank the community for allowing my family and myself to serve them for the season that we were needed. It was a hard decision for us to choose to close our variety store, but that decision is financially the best choice for us.

As we close out, I would ask that you be kind in helping us liquidate our inventory; this will help us repay the institutions and the individuals that have helped us to bring the retail service to the community. We have really enjoyed serving the community and learning new things about the retail world.

I know Jackie especially has had fun shopping for fun things that she felt would sell well and help to keep people from having to venture to faraway places to buy.

Holyoke has many things to be proud of. I encourage us, myself included, to take a hard look at our spending habits and analyze if we are helping our community or not. I was born and raised here; I have a lot of hometown pride.

I had enough faith and pride in our community that I led my family into investing our life savings into helping the community grow. I want to see Holyoke continue to grow and prosper. Many of the communities around us are shrinking at a frightening pace.

RJ’s primary intent was to offer Holyoke an alternative to shopping out of town, asking the community to “check with us first.”

There are many advertising philosophies that I see and hear the Holyoke businesses promoting. The Credit Union is “people helping people,” First Pioneer dubs themselves as “the home team,” and Bank of Colorado encourages personal banking and conversation over a bag of popcorn. All of these encourage us to recognize the value of our community and help to bolster the pride we have being from Holyoke.

Here is my Reader’s Digest version of small-town economics according to Randy. When we spend our paychecks, or the largest portion of it, within the confines of our town, the local businesses prosper. When local business prospers, business expands, creating jobs and adding services that were not available here before. Competition will flourish, and prices will fall.

A win-win for the community as a whole, in my opinion. As the town grows, it is easier to have pride in our community.

When we spend our paychecks or the largest portion outside of our town, the local businesses suffer. When local business struggle, the businesses raise prices to increase profitability, which further chases business away. As businesses close and/or wither, the people become forced to shop out of town more and more.

The cycle feeds on itself until we are left with little to offer. With little to offer, we have little to be proud of. The things we buy every month can be found at cheaper prices other places than here. The question that we have to ask ourselves is, at what price are we saving money?

Randy Hale


Holyoke Enterprise February 28, 2013