This year marks two decades since Sears, Roebuck and Co. did a final run of its legendary “Big Book” catalog, closing its catalog stores and shifting to a new retail model of locally owned and operated dealer stores.
The move not only ushered in a new era for shoppers, but provided opportunities for entrepreneurs to operate their own local Sears Hometown Store. In Ramona, Amy and Jeff Ruland opened their Sears Hometown Store at 220 Rotanzi St. on the corner of Main in June of 1998. They marked their 15th year here last month.
To commemorate their 20th anniversary, Sears Hometown Stores are hosting a “throwback” promotional weekend celebration July 26 and 27 featuring current versions of some popular items advertised in 1993, with the same or lower pricing than 1993 pricing.
“One of the Super Buys advertised in 1993 was a 3 cubic foot capacity, 11 cycle Kenmore washer for $429.99,” said Chief Operating Officer Will Powell. “To celebrate our 20th anniversary event, we’ll offer an comparable Kenmore washer, but it will have larger capacity, more cycles, an energy star rating, and it will be priced under $400.”
In addition to other featured “throwback” pricing, each shopper will also receive an anniversary scratch card for an additional “mystery discount” of up to an another 20 percent off the shopper’s entire purchase. These cards will be available while they last, terms and conditions apply, and further details can be found in the store.
“Looking back over the past 20 years, we’re celebrating tremendous progress,” said CEO and President Bruce Johnson. “Everyone has memories of ordering from the eagerly awaited ‘Big Book’ for delivery to a local catalog store or their home. The ‘Big Book’ is gone. But as much as things change, we continue to grow by providing top-notch customer service, and we still provide incredible values.”
In 1993, after Sears, Roebuck and Co. announced it would close approximately 2,000 catalog stores, it launched the dealer store opportunity. The Sears Hometown Stores have since grown into a network of approximately 900 locations, and are part of Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores Inc. (Nasdaq:SHOS), a publicly traded company that is separate from Sears Holdings Corporation.
The stores primarily sell appliances, tools, lawn and garden equipment and seasonal outdoor products. They carry proprietary Sears’ brands such as Craftsman, Kenmore and DieHard as well as an assortment of national brands. In addition, the Rulands’ Ramona store carries mattresses.
For more information, visit the store or call 760-788-8080.