To the editor:
I am one of the faithful Kmart shoppers and saddened by my recent visit during the store closing sale. I overheard countless times, customers uttering the words, "Isn't it a shame they are closing."
Yes, the closing of this "big box" store will have economic impact on New Ulm with its loss of sales tax revenue, property tax and many unemployed workers. This is a wake up call to all the fine citizens of New Ulm and the surrounding communities. If a corporate "Big Box" like Kmart can't make it in New Ulm, it's time to think about all our locally owner businesses in the area.
I am told by many visitors how impressed they are with the selection of retail shops we have in town. As a member of the community, I do most of my shopping in New Ulm. Looking for appliances, hardware, lumber, carpet, sporting goods, jewelry, flowers, clothing, gifts and more, please look in your hometown first. Locally owned businesses pay property taxes, employ your friends and neighbors, donate to local charity and private fundraising events, serve on community events committees and raise their families in New Ulm.
Let me take this opportunity to speak for many of my fellow retailers, we are not getting "rich" and our prices are not inflated or "jacked up," as we have heard. I encourage you to take some time and visit the locally owned business and see what we have to offer and compare prices, THEN figure your cost of gas for driving out of town to shop.
Please encourage your city council representative and the director of economic development to attract, assist and patronize small business and locally owned companies here in New Ulm.
I don't want to see New Ulm become a ghost town or lose any of its shopping charm. PLEASE support New Ulm's locally owned businesses.
Owner, The Country Loft