Whenever I’m in a parking lot or driving down the highway, I notice the license tags on cars. It’s interesting to me to see where someone is from. At a couple of stores in my town I tend to pay particular attention to the counties on the tags.
A bigger town west of here just got their very own Hobby Lobby (among other stores) and the grumblings going on here in Dodge City are that our store is likely to close. Someone even said the employees are “trained” to say ours will remain open. Today when I stopped in HL for some sewing supplies, I noticed an older lady with a Grant County tag on her car. Garden City is a lot closer to Grant County than we are I thought to myself. Wonder why she’s shopping here? While walking up to the doors, I thought maybe she doesn’t like crowds, or she doesn’t like driving in Garden City. I’m with you there ma’am. The added traffic and people in the stores can be a little overwhelming.
As I started down the main aisle to find the velcro I was looking for, it occurred to me if those same people doing the grumbling would SHOP in our town, maybe our stores could stay open. Your pennies spent in our HL will help keep it open. Maybe if they supported the community we would get some of the stores Garden City has. It doesn’t have to be every time you are shopping for something, but make a point to buy something local. On the other hand, do we want the added development that Garden City has experienced? I’ve heard property taxes are going up in Finney County among other things.
I’ve also heard our city and county commissioners are out to sabotage progress in Dodge City. I’m not exactly sure if this is true, but the only way to change how something is run in a city is to get involved, go vote and participate in local government. Only the commissioners know their agenda and what the future is for our town. They have no idea what the locals think and want unless the voices are heard. If you want something to change (as the morning radio DJ I listen to says) – stop complaining and change it.
I’ve always believed the notion that those who complain the loudest do the least amount of work. I feel like this applies to people and businesses in this town. You didn’t like the service at ____ restaurant. Did you speak with a manager? Did you file a complaint with corporate? Boycotting a restaurant may or may not help the situation, but is it a solution? What is the solution to bad customer service?
I tend to shop in my town or in towns I am traveling through. If there’s not XYZ store in my town, but in another, I will likely stop if I’m in the area and occasionally buy if the price is right. If the neighboring town happens to have the same store we do, I will shop in my town (even though the sales tax is cheaper else where). While I do like looking online for purchases and use it as a comparison tool, often times in the end shipping always seems to cost entirely too much and the mail carriers not being able to find my house or they won’t ship to a P.O. box make it not worth the hassle.
In the end, shop where you want, but if you have something to complain about, take it somewhere else. I get enough whining from my two boys. I find myself telling my three-year-old if you’re going to whine, go in your room, I don’t want to hear it. Stores can’t survive if you don’t spend money there and shop somewhere else. Communities can’t survive if it’s residents don’t support it.