High performance in Hawaii, Alaska and Washington
State by state, meet the 2018 class of Stihl Hardware All Stars
It takes a little more to be a Stihl Hardware All Star.
Each year, HBSDealer solicits nominations from readers and the industry for Hardware All Stars.
And each year, we’re rewarded with a fresh class of high-performing, community-minded, service-oriented businesses worthy of the honor.
During the course of our research, we’ve met dealers who take risks, inspire staff and lift communities — or have what we call the All Star spirit.
Congratulations to all of the 2018 Stihl Hardware All Star honorees. Here’s three stars worth gazing at:
Sunshine True Value
This rural outpost in Hawaii, on the Big Island, has turned into a destination store for locals. “We’re almost like a general store, a catch-all for people — we are the closest thing to civilization for about one hour,” owner Jake Chilton said. In 2014, he surveyed customers on what they would like Sunshine to carry; Chilton responded by doubling the store’s footprint as part of a True Value Destination remodel, and added outdoor power equipment, lawn and garden and nursery. “It has been a really good transition for our business.”
Here’s comeback story worthy of All-Star status. After opening in 2006, this small-town store 10 miles north of Anchorage was rocked by the combination of the financial downturn and a 2.5-year road project that choked customer access. Bankruptcy followed, but not defeat. After a seven-year break, co-owner Justin Phillips and his business partner have resurrected the store. “Now we’re making something happen here, and community support is huge,” he said. “It just goes to show: don’t give up.”
Jack’s Country Store of Ocean Park
Founded in 1885, this All Star is recognized as the oldest continuous retail operator in the state. Jack’s has paved a unique path to All Star status, combining a vintage hardware store appeal with a full grocery and a retail mix that serves its fishing and clamming community. The store invites customers to engage staff and challenge them with unusual product requests. “Friendly waters are frequently accepted and seldom lost,” the company says on its home page.
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