The recent news of retail stores closing in Bloomington is concerning news…first, Macy’s then The Limited. It is well-known that “brick and mortar” retail is suffering from online shopping and discount stores. Many people are moving to the convenience of shopping from their homes and their phones.
So, what do the Specialty Shops of Fairbury think of this seemingly depressing news? These shops have long prided themselves in offering, either from a product or service perspective, something “unique,” hand-made, or “one of a kind.”
Where else do you get the same hand-made children’s items at Meyer’s Gifts, or the many hand-made, hand-sewn products sold at Heart’s Desire, or some of the unique candy offerings at Country Cupboard, or the Plymouth yarn and hand-made products sold at Lost Arts, or the “down-home” experience of checking out at Kilgus Farmstead, or the elegant, hand-glazed pottery at Serendipity, or the huge selection of upscale apparel at Once ‘n Again, or the fresh, seasonal offerings at Cascade Gardens, or the friendly carry-out service from Dave’s Supermarket, or the convenience of Fairbury Furniture, a furniture store which will match or beat all prices and also offered banquet facilities with a Cinderella staircase, or the speedy local florist service of Nature’s Design, or the many unique antique finds at Antiques & Uniques, and the list could go on and on.
These shops are “specialty,” and they offer “unique” products and services. They attract shoppers who appreciate being treated special and who are looking for special things.
“Retail is a tough business,” says Bobbi McKeon, owner of Heart’s Desire and coordinator of the Specialty Shops Group of Fairbury, “but our shops are different than the big discount stores and the national chains.
“We offer products and services not found for miles around, and we sincerely appreciate those local residents who shop at our stores before venturing out of town. Although we are excited when people come to shop with us from Kankakee, Indiana, Chicago, or anywhere, it is the consistent patronage from the locals that helps so much to keep our doors open.
“Thank you for patronizing our shops and keeping us motivated during these times when other retail stores are closing!” concludes Bobbi
As always, call Bobbi McKeon at (815) 692-4500 or email fairbury@fairburyILattractions.com with any stories, ideas or suggestions for interesting topics to write for our community.