Several Hallmark Stores Prepare To Close

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HAZLE TOWNSHIP -- Long lines of customers were at several Hallmark gift shops in our region Thursday.

Hallmark Heritage Shops in Hazleton, Scranton, Shamokin, Bloomsburg, Lehighton, and Williamsport are expected to close soon as the greeting card business changes.

The owner of the shops blames declining business, but stores expected to close were very busy Thursday.

At Hallmark Heritage Shops in the Keyser Oak Shopping Center in Scranton and the Laurel Mall near Hazleton, the lines were out the door.

All the business is a little too late.

Customers were there to shop as the store prepares to close its doors.

"We've shopped Hallmark for years and years, and we'll miss it," said Pat Scarpati of Hazleton.

Scarpati didn't mind waiting in line for up to a half hour to for a chance stock up on traditional Hallmark goods.

"I was surprised [at the lines]," said Theresa Holly of West Hazleton. "I am surprised they are closing because they have such nice things."

The independent owner of nearly a dozen Hallmark Heritage Shops sent a letter to loyal shoppers inviting them to the liquidation sale. It's a thank you for shopping at his stores over the past 45 years.

"I'm really going to miss this, so I stocked up. I have a basket full and my husband is in there watching it. I hope I get back there to ring it up before he sees what's in there," said Renee Greenwood. "[I have] about 100 cards in my basket!"

"We like the Hallmark brand. We come here to shop. It's at the Laurel Mall, we come here to shop. So now we'll be down to one at the other mall," said Donna Yannuzzi of Hazleton.

The shop at the Church Hill Mall near Hazleton is the next closest Hallmark store. It's run by a different owner who says business is good. They want people to know they plan to stay around, and even honor current coupons or reward certificates from the closing stores

"We have the phone ringing off the wall," said Karen Forte, Angelique Boutique. "Hopefully, I need to get in touch with all the new customers. I need to find out what they need."

The following locations are closing:

  • Laurel Mall, Hazleton
  • Keyser Oak Plaza, Scranton
  • The Fun Shop, Shamokin
  • Columbia Mall, Bloomsburg
  • Clearfield Mall, Clearfield
  • Carbon Plaza, Lehighton
  • Cloister Shopping Center, Ephrata
  • Loyal Plaza, Williamsport
  • Pennsboro Commons, Enola

6 comments

  • Franko

    But the Obimbo Economic Recovery Plan has worked out so Great for NEPA businesses and jobs, hasn’t it now.
    Of course you still have to add in corporate greed as well, in Hallmark’s case. Do you know why Hallmark product cost so much? I have worked in retail merchandising and have worked on some Hallmark reset projects, like at WalMart, and I have to laugh because once a year, Hallmark changes it color theme for the year, and we go in, rip out every pegboard, every endcap, everything that has anything to do with the previous years colors associated with it, and it all get’s thrown in dumpsters, not even recycled, it gets all thrown out. Shelves, racks, pegboards, side pieces of end caps, fixtures, etc, all because it has the old colors on them. Instead of making something like regular retailers have where you can change out color stripes, etc. Nope, Hallmark does all new, nothing old remains. When I did the Wal Mart in Dickson City, it was an 8 hr project with I think 12 people working on it to take apart everything and toss it and rebuild. Because it’s not Wal Mart’s property, all those shelves and fixtures and racks are all Hallmark property, and it has to be destroyed. I’ve even seen lighting fixtures for displays, hallmark supplies extension cords, fixture lighting timers, etc., all get tossed because it was required. Hallmark recoups the costs by charging a fortune for it’s products. While at the same time, paying their own merchandisers who work the cards all year round in the outside retail stores that aren’t Hallmark stores, a big $8/hr, because the stores, like WalMart, etc., don’t allow their employees to do that work themselves. (Seriously, go online and check out HallMark Merchandiser positions, they only pay $8/hr)

  • Dave

    It’s disgusting that people are such vultures. Guaranteed that most of the customers waiting in the long lines have never been a valued customer to these establishments. Yet, they flock there with smiles on their faces to save a few dollars. It’s a shame. More jobs lost, but hey, let’s go to Wal-Mart and save $.15. That’s the Ammerican way.

  • just sayin

    Surprised that they lasted this long. $5-$6 cards are a bit too expensive. Who spends hundreds of dollars on cards between birthdays, anniversaries, Christmas, Easter, etc. Everything else is way overpriced. It may say Hallmark but also made in China! Collectables mass produced in China…yeh right! When you care enough to send the best. Use that line when the items are at least made in USA!

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