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Are you excited about this year’s Sidewalk Sale?

Asked at Borders, 700 N.H. on July 20, 2005

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Photo of Penny Hardman

“I’m working the Sidewalk Sale and I’m absolutely thrilled. It’s going to be a long day, but our business really looks forward to it.”

Photo of Amy McPheeters

“I would have to say no because I work downtown, and it’s a zoo. It’s hard to find a place to park or eat, but I know it’s a lot of fun for other people and it’s good for all the merchants.”

Photo of Stephen Johnson

“No. I’m not a shopper. I’m sure there are plenty of good deals to be had, but I only buy things when I need them.”

Photo of Charles Scholle

“Actually, I usually don’t go to the Sidewalk Sale. It’s a great time, but it’s impossible to get anywhere downtown. I’m sure it will be fun though.”

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GreenEyedBlues 12 years, 10 months ago

Most bargain hunters justify in buying useless/ugly things because they're cheap. Wake up! Yeah, there's a reason that sh*t is on clearance/sale.

Not saying I don't shop off the rack!

Every now n' then Wal*Mart puts Nivea Men's shaving cream on clearance for like $1.00 per can. What a steal!

tell_it_like_it_is 12 years, 10 months ago

Good point enochville. You're probably right.

tell_it_like_it_is 12 years, 10 months ago

LJW must want to stay away from politics. I was sure the question today would be what do you think of Bush's supreme court nominee.

Richard Heckler 12 years, 10 months ago

What does anybody think about the ultra conservative John Roberts nomination? And the sidewalk sale? Is there any contrast?

enochville 12 years, 10 months ago

tell_it_like_it_is: I completely agree. Maybe the announcement came laterthan they usually talk to people for "On the Street".

kutwitch 12 years, 10 months ago

Are you kidding me? I wouldn't give the greedy downtown businesses a dime of my money. Even their sale prices are exorbent for crappy merchandise.

Richard Heckler 12 years, 10 months ago

Sometimes the need for additional pedestrian traffic space could be provided by closing down Mass leaving 7th,8th,9th and 10th open. The sidewalk sale would be a perfect candidate. Fill up the streets with food,music,drink and merchandise... shop till you drop. Bringing the farmers market downtown on Saturday mornings would be cool as well. Say close off the 800 block of Mass from 5AM-11AM as downtown does not wake up until noon on Saturday.

I'll probaly pass this year as there is plenty of stuff in my area now and this year there is too much work scheduled for Thursday. Love to make's fun too. However it is very likely other family members will participate.

Richard Heckler 12 years, 10 months ago

Contrary to some remarks I found One Sport low cut hikers for $20,a pair of Vasque gore-tex hikers $30 and a pair of Montrail low cut hikers $15 at one stop two years ago. These are high quality foot wear and needless to say I won't be needing new footwear for a while. Not a bad deal considering they would be over priced at $100 or more suggested retail.

There are many good buys in this sale. There will always be junk for sale but then again that might be treasure to others.

We find this a good time to shop for Christmas gifts.

italianprincess 12 years, 10 months ago

I have to work, so having it on a Saturday would be nice. I realize that people come from all over, but a weekend would be great to have one.

I know it last until sundown, but by then most of good stuff is gone already. Its so crowded you can't walk without bumping into someone or someone bumping into you. I know its good for the retailers downtown because they get rid of alot of their things this way. Its just so crowded though.

Have a great day everyone.

Redneckgal 12 years, 10 months ago

Dang wish I could take off work and go. Oh well maybe next year.

cutny 12 years, 10 months ago

Hey GreeneyedBlues...keep shopping at Wal-Mart, and you won't have to worry about there being any more sidewalk sales...ever heard of the high cost of low pricing?

Redneckgal 12 years, 10 months ago

Never thought of that OMB. You might be right!

acg 12 years, 10 months ago

They always have this freaking thing on a Thursday. I always have to work. :( 15 years I've lived in KS and every year I miss the damned sidewalk sale because the morons have the thing in the middle of the week when people have to be at work. There could be great stuff to be had and I'm totally missing out.

Wal-Mart is evil, btw. Not looking to get into a big debate, but we all know it is. Anyone ever read The Store by Bentley Little?

happyone 12 years, 10 months ago

I will not be going to the sidewalk sale this year. Its always way too crowded and the moms use those strollers as weapons. If anything is evil its those women!

acg -- I haven't read it were's it at??

chrys anthalbee 12 years, 10 months ago

cutny: "the high cost of low pricing" ... fabulous.

this thread is suprisingly on topic so far.

happyone 12 years, 10 months ago

Although I know a lot of people against it I think they should put the one in on 6th & Wakarusa. It would help the stagnate (sp?) business out there. And ease the traffic on south Iowa. just a thought :)

chrys anthalbee 12 years, 10 months ago

bob has it right. wal-mart is way too crowded for me. i get claustrophobic in those tiny aisles.

happyone 12 years, 10 months ago

Besides its not like it would take and more business away from downtown as they are always saying. people that go downtown will still go downtown. people that go to walmart will just have another one closer. :)

happyone 12 years, 10 months ago

Its still in business because its the closest store to east lawrence.

Confrontation 12 years, 10 months ago

I don't know what I'd do without HyVee! I'd be stuck going to a snobby Dillon's! Is anyone else annoyed by the super-rude WalMart workers? Try going there late in the evening. Don't be surprised if they try to run you over with their electric carts. If you get a smile from one of their evening workers, then you must have some special powers. I guess I'd be sad if I worked there, too.

happyone 12 years, 10 months ago

Confrontation-- You could always shop at Checkers they're cheaper anyway!! and the people are nice too :) Hyvee has false advertisement anyway I've never had anyone help me find anything the few times I went there. So I don't think that there really is a "Helpful smile in every isle" in fact I didn't see anyone in the isles!

happyone 12 years, 10 months ago

T_F I've always went to Fun and Games downtown for my "plastic crap"

Jeff Goodrick 12 years, 10 months ago

I don't know how you folks can make ends meet without shopping at Walmart, as a single dad with kids, I can't shop downtown Lawrence because things cost so much here, I go to Topeka and save about 10% at Food 4 less and Hypermart, fuel is even 15 cents cheaper there.

happyone 12 years, 10 months ago

e_m don't you think that would be too close to the other store?

what about along 6th street somewhere

happyone 12 years, 10 months ago

that looks like a better spot lets write up the plans and go give them to Jim Lewis

acg 12 years, 10 months ago

Did you happen to catch Dateline the other night? Indian woman who sews Wal Mart clothes for $ .17 per hour? If Wal-Mart would give her a raise of $ .05 per hour she can advance her family to a whole different way of life. But will they? Nope! They brought this woman to America to show her a typical Wal-Mart store. The price of a pair of sweat pants ($12.84) is about what she makes per week to make their crappy stuff. More Wal Mart facts? 10% of all good imported into this country from China are done so solely for the purpose of sale at walmart (source: US AFL-CIO quarterly newsletter). 60% of women employed at walmart are given hours that make it impossible for them to qualify for any sort of benefits from walmart (source: US News & World Reports). Do I really need to go on? There is just the tip of the ice berg. I have pages of facts about the evil mart. You feel like you want to feel TOB, everyone has the right to an opinion. For my money? I won't shop at a store that is helping to destroy the American economy.

webmocker 12 years, 10 months ago

Hen House is fine, but TRADER JOE'S would rule.

raven 12 years, 10 months ago

acg: I am interested in your Wal-Mart facts, can you tell me where I can find more information?

acg 12 years, 10 months ago

You can pull any of it up from online. I get a lot of my info from the Labor Beacon, the AFL-CIO circulars and newsletters and newsletters from the organization that I work for. I'm a Union gal. I belong to SEIU#1 and I work for a different Union. So there's no shortage of info on Wal Mart. Every time there's a story in the paper, online at, etc. I print it off and put it in my evil wal mart folder. Plus I had a mole on the inside of the distribution plant in Ottawa for a few years. They had mandatory anti Union meetings once a month and he'd provide me with copies of everything the comany would put out at these meetings. And you can always google wal mart and there will be countless pages of info you can get. True, anyone can put anything on line they wish and claim it to be fact so unless they cite a source they don't go into my file. : )

acg 12 years, 10 months ago

Oh yeah and the NLRB. I can't forget them. I get alot of info from watching the cases that are filed against Wal mart and the rulings that come down against them with the NLRB.

Oh and Tom Foolery, if they pay one lady one week of wages at $13.00 a week and sell one pair of pants for that amount back home don't try and sit there and tell me they can't give this lady a $ .05 an hour raise so her kids can own shoes. That ludicrous. Anyway, like I said earlier, I don't shop there, for those of you who wish to, knock yourselves out. I can't stomach the thought of spending my money in there and I won't. Like I stated earlier, you all have the right to your opinion and your cheap plastic crap made by little chinese hands.

acg 12 years, 10 months ago

Oh I agree with you whole heartedly TOB. I also don't shop at Target, Kmart or Hypermart. Everything I'm currently wearing has a made in the USA label in it, which takes a lot of time and money to find but to me it's worth it. I do everything in my power to not buy imported crap, including fruits and veggies. It takes a lot of time out of my schedule, searching online for made in the USA and going to farmer's markets, etc. vs. the grocery store. But if more people would do stuff like that instead of bopping off to the nearest wal mart and slapping down their $10.99 for their imported crap then maybe our economy wouldn't be in quite as bad of shape as it is. That's all from me. I have a sonogram. Bye ya'll.

happyone 12 years, 10 months ago

good luck at the Dr. acg hope all is well on the sono!!

Redneckgal 12 years, 10 months ago

The whole Wal-Mart experience is just pure evil as far as I'm concerned. From shopping to employment. I've never worked at Wal-Mart but I have had an occasion (as an employment coach) to sit thru the training films for new hires. Those are not orientation films..they are brain washing films. And the morning associate meetings. Have you ever been exposed to one of them? It is more like a Wal-Mart propaganda pep-rally. I was a cheerleader in high school and I don't think we could've done it any better then some of those managers do. Sort of a cross between TV preacher cheerleader and dictator of a small country. Its all very weird strange bizarre...evil.

happyone 12 years, 10 months ago

I shop at Wal-Mart because the items are cheaper. Yes made in the USA is great but when pinching pennies to make ends meet paying the extra money just can't happen. Besides its not like Wal-Mart is the only store buying things overseas cheap.

tell_it_like_it_is 12 years, 10 months ago

Wal mart might be okay in a big town with a little competition but this is what happens in a small town: they come and gradually all the little mom and pop stores go out one by one. After they are all gone Wal mart builds a even bigger store and then since they no longer have competition they're prices raise and the customer service goes to hell.

willa 12 years, 10 months ago

TOB -- you might want to rethink the novelty store in East Lawrence...after all, with the toddler gangs roaming around, it doesn't seem as if that kind of entertainment is lacking...

beatrice 12 years, 10 months ago

Reason to hate Wal Mart, let me count the ways.

For starters, how about hating them because of the lawsuits they brought against the city of Lawrence (meaning me and you)! We are the ones who have to pay for this through our tax dollars. To continue to shop there because you save a dime on (insert name of product here) doesn't make sense.

The owners of Wal Mart owe nothing to Lawrence, they will take as much of our money as possible and if they ever manage to suck the economy dry they will simple leave town. A big empty box with no mom and pops to help sustain a place is what will be left. Drive across the country, and you will see what I mean.

As far as the sidewalk sale goes, for those who think it is too crowded I recommend that you shop a little, and then take a mid-day stop at Free State for a delicious pint of freshly brewed ale (yum!). Keep it to one, and it will help take the edge off the annoyance factor of the busy street.

In anticipation of tomorrow's likely question on the supreme court nomination, here is my take: President Bush owed it to the people who voted for him to pick a conservative judge, as much as I hate to see it. If Kerry had won, I would expect someone more liberal. It is just that simple. To the victor go the spoils.

But as the saying goes, be careful of what you ask for, because you just might get it.

willa 12 years, 10 months ago

The East Lawrence toddler was a tangential comment, as so many of these are, and I think it was around the fourth, and inspired by OTTR or tell_it, I think. Anyway, I live in E. Lawrence, but on the dividing edge between the East and downtown. By the time the gangs reach me, they seem to have become packs of adolescents.

beatrice 12 years, 10 months ago

One more thing: I just heard that James Doohan -- Scotty on Star Trek -- just died. :(

Now I'll never get beamed up.

Richard Heckler 12 years, 10 months ago

Wal-Mart sucks as a question about it. They have a fair share of suppliers out of business. They buy once then come back and say to suppliers this is what we'll pay take it or leave it. Many suppliers lay off their workers and head to China. Why? Because Wal-Mart is looked upon as the big pie in the sky. Suppliers put too many company eggs in a Wal-Mart basket so that Wal-Mart becomes like heroin. Considering they are the wealthiest company in the world the lower end employee pay stinks.

Simply put losing good paying blue collar jobs is not good for the american economy. It's always better to keep american dollars at home not abroad. Considering what sweat shop labor pays... american consumers are being gouged. $50- $150 for sneakers made in China or anywhere abroad is a rip off.

New Balance still offers a few pair of american made sneakers which is what we buy. Not only that they are a higher quality shoe than the ones NB has manufactured abroad. Sneakers are not that great a buy at any price because of the replacement frequency. When I was growing up we bought leather shoes and replaced the soles a few times...lots of business types still carry on that tradition.

The fact that the Walton family stands behind Bush in his effort to dump public schools and replace them with private schools pisses me off. Guess who will be among the first in line to open a chain of private schools to put our tax dollars in their pockets? Do you want junk schools?

Yes it is damn difficult to find american made goods. Companies such as Wal-Mart have set the pace in that regard...them and our illustrious politicians.

kutwitch 12 years, 10 months ago

All these small town minds that think Walmart is evil and should be stopped are the same people who are banning everything else in Lawrence. Peoples freedoms and choices are quickly eroding in this city. I for one can't take it anymore so I am moving. This city used to be a great place to live but now it just makes me sad.

willa 12 years, 10 months ago

Tom_F, I don't think anyone is really going to complain about low prices. Wal-Mart just makes everyone realize that certain things have to be done in order to obtain low prices, and we often don't like those things that are required for the lowest prices to be obtained. Thus we're stuck with making the kinds of decisions that you've read about on the board...low price v. poor employee practices; convenience v. American-made goods, etc., etc. Some of us simply feel that we would rather pay more or be inconvenienced than sanction Wal-Mart's business decisions.

Fangorn 12 years, 10 months ago

Excited to avoid downtown at all costs during it, perhaps.

sunflower_sue 12 years, 10 months ago

Off topic alert!!!!!

I got a reply from WDAF TV 4 about the letter I sent them the night before last about my disapproval of their news footage of the Mother who had just lost a child in a drowning. They tried to assure me that they were just trying to educate the public on pool safety. BS!

I wrote them another letter. I'm still not watching! Did anyone else get a response? Just curious.

BunE 12 years, 10 months ago

Wal-Mart sells items at low prices and of questionable quality. They employ people at low wages and try and minimize benefits and maximize profits. They would rather close a store than allow the workers to unionize. Sure the customer gets a low priced dvd player and sam's soda but the workers there slowly lose more and more purchasing power as the value of their dollars decreases. Without benefits (and this is true with about 50 million americans, not just a large segment of Wal-Mart workers) the burden of their care is picked up by the rest of us in higher insurance rates to pay for those who's healthcare consists of the ER. Fewer companies can afford to provide good insurance, driving down the relative wealth of the middle class and placing downward pressure on real wages and the value of the dollar as a purchasing medium.

Short term, yeah you can get cheap clothes for jr and juice boxes for less than Dillons but long term, wealth is re-distributed to the major shareholders of Wal-Mart Stock (the Waltons) and long term, fewer people can afford to consume at the levels that Americans must in order to maintain our economy. The stock begins to drop as prices at wal-mart are driven up due to a lower demand and fewer people can buy.

That is why Wal-Mart sucks. Wake up and smell the coffee people. Faceless Corporations like Wal-Mart are only concerned with the short term growth of ther share value. The CEO right now will be out with his money soon enough leaving the fall to another.

BunE 12 years, 10 months ago

Ouch. You got me. Truth boring? or is reading hard?

BunE 12 years, 10 months ago

I am sorry, that was just mean. I should have read more carefully myself.

BunE 12 years, 10 months ago

never mind that the Wal-mart ethos is what is ruining the Royals!

Ewing K! Where are you!?!?!?!

Redneckgal 12 years, 10 months ago

Sunflower....yes I did get a reply and yes I am disgusted! My God! We all know all to well bad things happen to good people all the time. To use such a thing as that to educate the public...I'm even madder now then I was the night I seen it. I too will be replying. are right on! The only way to really protest them is not to shop there..even if it means you have to spend a little more somewhere else. I try to avoid them as often as I can.

BunE 12 years, 10 months ago

Yes tom foolery, but none on the scale of Wal-Mart. Maximizing shareholder value is no way to grow a company long term, ask GM.

happyone 12 years, 10 months ago

Ok I get the idea you all HATE wal-mart some one even said that "we" will have to pick up the tab of the lawsuit wal-mart brought against Lawrence......WELL guess what Wal-Mart was told be the "Commish" that they could build here (6th&waka) then after the commish saw the plans THEY (The Commish) Said NO WAY!! You can thank your commish for that loss of money NOT Wal-Mart!!

Many have voiced the amount of pay that workers at Wal-Mart get.....For those that are not Highly educated Wal-Mart pays Very well starting at $7/hr or more. Thats better than most of the grocery stores!!!

Next for those that were ranting about exorbant over pricing to make money lets take a look at your typical PIZZA.


And yes you pay LETS HEAR IT $9.99

AND the CREW at that PIZZA PLACE MAKES $5.50/hr

Linda Aikins 12 years, 10 months ago

Anagrams for Walmart----


Ceallach 12 years, 10 months ago

sun_sue: Bryan McGruder is good at his job -- no? I too received a message letting me know they also have families and try not to treat others differently than they would want to be treated. Yeah, sure! No one should tolerate that total violation of privacy. Hopefully this families did not give permission to be interviewed -- if they did, all bets would be off. Bryan did not mention that so I assume they did not.

Ceallach 12 years, 10 months ago

happyone: you made some very good points, I'm particularly glad you reminded the board of the commission's big OOPS, we changed our minds.

What I seem to be hearing is that good, conscientious people go from store to store (except Wal-youknowwho), examine each item to be sure it is not foreign made, and then pay more money (than they would have to pay elsewhere) to avoid feeding the W-M pig. While on the other hand, uninformed, uneducated trash go to Wal M*** and because they are too dumb and have no taste anyway, they use their meager bucks to buy useless crap.


Apparently those who have so eloquently bashed, not just Wal Mart but anyone who shops at Wal Mart, have more time and money than some of the lesser folk.

Maybe you could furnish the local cretins with a list of acceptable places to go and brands to buy, then they could shed their shackles and fly with the beautiful people -- oh no, wait -- they can't afford it!! Honestly, some people are more than a little full of themselves today!

While everyone is buzzing around the Sidewalk Sale (appears to be one of the acceptable venues) be sure to check those labels, and watch out for the poor people who might be looking for a bargain (it might rub off).

swamp_rat 12 years, 10 months ago

Wal Mart Sucks!!!! So do their shady practices. Permanent garage sale atmosphere...but maybe some like that kind of thing. There is no accounting for taste. Support the "little man".

Richard Heckler 12 years, 10 months ago

On a price shopping spree a few years back I learned that Wal-Mart is not always a great deal. Cottin's,Weavers, a used clothing store in the Mall's which stocks reasonably good clothes, HY VEE or in general anywhere there are sales can significantly reduce the Wal Mart savings.

Then take good employee pay packages into consideration. After all most any productive person works hard and deserves a decent pay package. Thus I offer the following as an alternative:

Lets try COSTCO for good employee pay packages:

There are some very good words about COSTCO in this article:

Also here is an excellent interview:

If Lawrence feels a need to bring another big box store to town let's bring in a good company and competition to Wal-Mart.

Ceallach 12 years, 10 months ago

swamp_rat, when you say support the little man who do you mean? This time I'm not trying to be smart :) I really do want to know. I have a friend who has worked at Wal-Mart for several years and she likes her job. I have had many occasions when one of their employees was very helpful and friendly. She is a little person, a wonderful woman and a great mom (who happens to need to work).

Big corporations do not do business the same way the old-time local department store were run. But if I remember right, those store owners were some of the richest people in town, their kids ruled the schools, etc., the only difference is they were big fish in a little pond, whereas Wal-Mart is a big fish in a big pond.

I admit I got more than a little upset about the posts that kept making fun of and degrading people who shop at Wal-Mart. Well, in case everyone hasn't guessed by now -- I shop at Wal-Mart and as long as I can save 25 to 30 dollars every two week I will continue doing so, this is one cretinette that will be joining the huddling masses that need to save a buck when they can, where they can.

Fangorn 12 years, 10 months ago

sunflower_sue: I also got a reply from Fox4. They gave me the same line. I'm still disgusted.

Gootsie: You've got way too much time on your hands! :)

I shop at Wal-Mart all the time, except on Saturdays of course. I used to have some misgiving about it because the Waltons were big contributers to certain Democratic politicians. But now that Wallyworld is the Left's new Great Satan, I shop there with relish (or at least catsup and mustard).

merrill: Thanks for the links. Do you not believe that Target provides competition for Wal-Mart?

Linda Aikins 12 years, 10 months ago


swamp_rat 12 years, 10 months ago

Ceallach, Really, no offense intended to you. I, also believe in saving a buck where I can. I'm an avid Good Will shopper for clothes and I freeload off my sister for most of my meals.;) I just have a personal bias against Wal Mart because they are the largest importer of goods from China in the USA. They also have sneaky business practices (i.e. they spy on other stores...I have personal knowledge of this). I'm not condemning you for shopping there, I just had to slam them because I was given the opportunity to do so.
What I mean by the "little man" is: farmer's market produce (when in season) and locally owned businesses. I realize we can't put all our money in local pockets but I try to do my share.

Richard Heckler 12 years, 10 months ago

Target is competition ...not a lot. Their stores are nicer and brighter. Prices are very much the same as far as I know. Been a long time since I've shopped Wal-Mart. Cut way back on Target as well.

Not a lot made in USA anymore but have fun shopping the sidewalk sales...even Penney's I believe. It's a great social event.

Ceallach 12 years, 10 months ago

swamp_rat: Your post was really quite tame compared to some earlier, they were pretty mean, you just the whole ball of wax -- I apologize. I too go to the farmer's market and shop locally when I can. But when the store downtown is $125.00 - $150.00 higher for a household appliance, I have no choice but to go to big boys.

fangorn: It appears your identity has been exposed! Now every one knows your real name -- Ann Frog!!!

until tomorrow ---

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