Hood River Supply expands

Feb. 23, 2011

"We were busting at the seams," said Pat McAllister, president and CEO of Hood River Supply (Ace Hardware), of the impetus for remodeling and expanding indoor retail space in their Heights retail location at 1995 12th St.

According to McAllister, an additional 1,600 square feet of retail floor space has been added by moving the parts department into a former service bay in the building and reconfiguring the vacated space into a full-service pet and livestock supply zone.

"We have specialty animal feed and supplies that people may not realize we carry," said McAllister. "We have also added Key work clothing, Muck Boots and Georgia Boots, along with expanded orchard and vineyard supplies."

For those bird lovers in the area, McAllister noted that February is national bird feeding month. "We've got a huge selection of bird feeds," he said.

To locate any of the new feeds, work clothing or equipment, customers should look for the classic "Purina" trademark red and white checkerboard, which marks the floor of the new room at the back of the store.

"We took a display concept offered by Purina and made space for it here," said McAllister.

"Today's customers are looking to feed the best to their companion animals and we have products for everything from alpacas to koi, along with the usual horse or indoor animal products," he said.

To find the relocated parts department, which features replacements for equipment by Massey-Ferguson or Briggs & Stratton, among other brands, just follow the signs posted in the store, and pass through the new remodel.

McAllister said that you need not be a member of the Supply Association to shop at the store, but also noted the upcoming annual meeting of members scheduled for Thursday, Feb. 24, at 7 p.m. at the Pine Grove grange hall.

"We will be distributing patronage and stock retirement checks to members and we will be sharing the fiscal results of this last retail year," McAllister said.

Following a record five years of growth, McAllister reported a slight drop in sales this last year.

"It could have been worse, given the economy," he said.

Meeting the needs of predicted growth is still on the organization's mind though, with the recent purchase of land between the existing Height's retail store and Rosauers, and a planned future building expansion.

"We are conducting site configuration work now," noted McAllister. "We are trying to determine the optimal size for a new facility … We think it may be between 30,000 to 40,000 square feet, with two-thirds of the space dedicated to retail."

To celebrate continued strong patronage and the already completed remodel, the store plans to hold customer appreciation events between March 28 and April 2. Part of the planned celebrations will include a grand opening ceremony for the Purina retail area.

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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