Outdated City sports activities retailer to shut amid delay of fall athletics
OLD TOWN, Maine — Amy Albert opened Replay Sports activities two years in the past with a dream of an area store the place households may purchase used gear for his or her youngsters at reasonably priced costs.
Now, the consignment retailer is about to shut for good — and in doing so, it joins a rising record of Maine’s small companies which have collapsed below the load of the coronavirus pandemic this 12 months.
“We will climate a storm and now we have since March — that’s one factor. It’s a complete different factor to climate a storm with no sign of ending,” Albert wrote in a Fb publish asserting the shop’s closure final week.
The previous two years have been tumultuous for the small enterprise, which started to see actual development in February and March — simply earlier than the pandemic pressured it and plenty of different small companies to close down quickly.
“The timing couldn’t have been worse for us,” Albert mentioned, standing behind the store counter as prospects trickled out and in.
Even after a two-month-long shutdown, it grew to become troublesome to maintain the enterprise afloat as folks hesitated to exit in public early within the pandemic, she mentioned.
Whereas she’d made some revenue in the summertime with membership sports activities, Albert confronted extra struggles in latest weeks with the delay of the fall sports season, as mother and father wait to purchase gear till they know when their youngsters will play once more.
Final week, the Maine Principals’ Affiliation delayed the start of the high school season after the Maine Division of Well being and Human Providers and the Division of Schooling launched a four-page letter addressing concerns with the MPA’s plans.
“Sports activities are big [here],” mentioned Albert, a mom of three, whose oldest son was recruited final 12 months to play baseball for the College of Maine. “Sports activities have been our complete life.”
Moreover, the cancellation of Old Town’s annual Riverfest had a big effect on the enterprise. The occasion had introduced in loads of foot site visitors final 12 months.
Albert, who additionally works half time at Northern Gentle Japanese Maine Medical Middle, mentioned she had made plans to develop the enterprise by increasing working hours and investing in software program to handle her greater than 200 consignors earlier than the pandemic hit.
The prospect of reopening the enterprise later or beginning a brand new enterprise sometime isn’t on Albert’s thoughts proper now — as a substitute, she’s centered on getting ready to shut the chapter on Replay Sports activities.
She mentioned she had hoped somebody would wish to take over the shop and hold it going by the remainder of the pandemic.
“We have now labored to remain afloat however with no sign of ending with this pandemic, we simply can’t do it anymore. It’s unhappy as we nonetheless know the potential is big,” Albert wrote within the Fb publish final week.
“If anybody has any curiosity in weathering the storm with this completely turnkey established enterprise, please message us. In any other case, onward and upward.”
Replay Sports activities will maintain a store-wide closing sale earlier than it formally shuts down on the finish of the month. Individuals can go to the store at 240 Major St. in Outdated City or name 207-827-4625 for data.