Sunday, April 30, 2023

EntertainMART/Hastings Kerrville Texas October 2020

As I thin out my older photo posts, here is another one from a few years ago. This is the EntertainMART in Downtown Kerrville Texas as seen in October 2020. As you can see right off of the bat, this location was a former Hastings and has a lot of the fixtures still in place. This is the proper way to repurpose a store while keeping the history of the previous retailer intact. Vintage Stock and EntertainMART have taken over a few former Hastings locations, but they have yet to expand to the Houston area at this time. They are close with a location in College Station at Post Oak Mall. 

Let's go inside, shall we?

Most of the old fixtures from Hastings were still intact. 

Game consoles in 2020. I was surprised to see Nintendo Switches for sale. They were still pretty hard to find in late 2020.

More fixtures still intact like the video sign.

Middle of the store to the front checkouts.

Remember all of those video game collectible characters that Toys R Us had on clearance a couple of years before my visit? Chances are that some of these are from those sales. Second hand retailers still have tons of these lying around.

Retro games!

The checkout counters still had the old Hastings logos on the lights.

I am pretty sure that the Hardback cafe signage is left over from Hastings as well. I didn't go inside to see the menus, but they were open and serving drinks.

Now here is where things get interesting. 

You may remember seeing this lady in the Hastings ads at other stores. Here she is actually holding a Entertainmart gift card instead of a Hastings certificate. It is pretty funny that they kept this up like this.

Another station with vintage Hastings signage.

These abstract drawings were part of the late 80's early 90's Hastings design as well.

The old Hastings slogan was still up as well.

The back aisles of the store.

Another view of the vintage signage. The Pulp Fiction poster may have been recently added.

The only part of the store that was really different from the Hastings days. These pegboard walls usually showcased T-shirts and musical instruments depending on the store.

Hastings or Entertainmart? The concepts are so similar you sometimes you forget it is not Hastings anymore.

The video selection was lighter than it was in the past. Stores like this one have a tendency to start out like this and accumulate a lot of inventory in the future.

The rest of the store had a good amount of stock. Hastings did have a lot more product lines than Entertainmart carries.

The back wall of the store.

More of the abstract characters from the Hastings era can be seen all over the upper walls.

The toy selection.

The one cool thing that Entertainmart kept going at least here is the rental of games and movies.

Collectibles and toys.

There is a huge book selection that we touched on earlier, but here it is pretty much all the way across the store length.

Board games and videos in the background.

The music and instrument selection.

The Hastings music signage is intact here as well.

As you can see there was a lot of music CD's to choose from.

The music instrument selection was a bit bare. 

The t-shirt racks, I am not sure if these were from the Hastings era or new fixtures. I had not visited this store previously.

Now for some close-ups of the video selection. Some were only up to rent and others to buy or rent.

I do miss rental stores, they are so rare to find these days. Unfortunately, we were just visiting for the day so we did not rent anything. 

Vinyl records.

Up front they had this section of collectibles. Swords, video games, cars, cards, and a lot more random stuff can be found here.

Here is the road sign.

I hope you enjoyed this trip, more to come.


Saturday, April 15, 2023

Sears Home and Life Lafayette Louisiana March 2023

So did we visit a Sears store in 2023 the answer is yes, well kinda. While this is not your typical Sears department store, it is a Sears concept store that only had four locations. Anchorage Alaska (2019), Overland Park Kansas (2019), Pharr Texas (2017), and Lafayette Louisiana (2019) where we are at today. According to their statement when the 2019 stores opened, the stores were designed based on the feedback from the Pharr store. This store is probably around 15,000 square feet of retail space, much smaller than their average department store. It is basically a larger version of the Hometown stores with some extras. The store is also reminiscent of their outlet stores with an open floor warehouse look with minimal decorations.

As you can see this shopping center has a lot of prime retailers and restaurants. In 2023 the Sears sign looks out of place, but I was very happy to see it.

The front checkout counter and entryway to the store.

After entering the store, my attention is drawn past the front counter to this tool display photo on the right. In typical Sears fashion, the photos no longer match the product selection below. 

There are a few tools on this wall, but the majority of the tool sets and pieces are actually towards the back middle of the store. 

There was an excess amount of garage door opener motor sets with two available pallets.

A couple of display toolboxes with the rest on the floor in cardboard boxes.

Their repair station just behind the front counter is filled with odds and ends as well. Some of the boxes had sold stickers and were waiting on pickup. You can also see one of the few TV's with Sears promotional ads that was on.

The Smart Home concept is here but the display is pretty empty. 

The Home Services counter also had Smart Home electronics.

A wide view of the appliance area of the store. 

The stickers were slightly peeling off. Be anazing!

Looking from the center of the left side of the store to the front.

The same area facing the front center and right side of the store.

Now for a wide view of the store from back (left side) to the front (right side).

There is a good bit of space in between the display models. Some of the space is filled by boxed appliances that are ready to go.

A better view of the middle area of the store. 

More boxed appliances crowded up this nearly empty tool aisle. You can see right up to the front entryway.

One of the tool aisles next to the appliance boxes was down to just a few light sets.

A few water filters and appliance repair parts in the back center of the store. A few microwaves are also in view at the bottom right.

And a row of more display refrigerators just to the left.

A sad end cap in the back of the second tool area.

And this end cap on the next aisle is just as empty.

Now for the best area of the second tool department. 

Yeah, definitely not what we are used to seeing in a Sears tool department. I was unsure if they were consolidating the tools into one area of if they were just setup like this. Having the tools in two separate areas of the store, even though they are close to each other, may confuse some shoppers. 

Now for more of the back wall. Lots of variety here.

The back right side of the store. More products including vacuum cleaners, accessories, and mattresses.

A huge chunk of the store is filled up with mattress displays.

A few boxed appliances made their way to this corner of the store.

Looking from the right back corner of the store to the front entryway.

Same view with a closer zoom.

The first tool area on the right side of the store.

Here are the two pallets of garage door opener motor sets. One this first one the boxes are looking faded. I wonder if these came from any of the Sears stores that closed in Louisiana or Hometown stores.

A random display in the middle of the tool department.

More of the tool selection in the first tool department.

A look at the middle back section of the store with the second tool department in the middle of the view.

Center of the store. Left is the front of the store, right is the back of the store.

I didn't manage to get a good picture of the loose tool aisle, but you can see it here to the left of the photo. There wasn't a lot to see.

The end caps on the second tool department.

A few of these aisle cards were seen in the department stores, but these are not faded.

Back to the front of the store. This is the Smart Home counter from earlier, partially blocked by these shelves.

This Smart Home setup looks really nice. I wonder if you could get all of the things here on

Even more display appliances setup at the front left side of the store entryway.

Unfortunately I could get a good photo of the Smart Home back side display due to items being in the way.

The back side of the Home Services counter.

Thankfully I was able to get a good photo of this display.

These TV's were off at the front counter/checkout area.

Another look at the front checkout counters.

The search bar kiosk is tucked away in the right front corner of the store. Next to, you guessed it boxed appliances.

The lawn and garden area was pretty empty. Maybe as we get closer to Summer, more stuff will arrive.

Generator and Powerwashing machines.

A couple of display riding mowers and Craftsman tool sets near the front counter of the store.

Lawn and Garden is definitely struggling. I did not see any Craftsman products that were for Lawn and Garden uses.

More views of the checkout front counter.

The DieHard Battery display looks much older than it should. It is probably a leftover from an old store.

Some of the items setup at the checkout counter.

The gift card rack looks even older than the DieHard battery display.

As for my thoughts about Sears in 2023. This concept store sells what Sears was best known for. Tools and appliances are the bread and butter of what Sears was known for. It seems like this store is still selling a good number of appliances based on the amount of sold stickers I saw on appliances around the store. Is it enough to keep this location going inside of this prime shopping center? With this being my first visit, it is hard to tell. A handful of customers came in while we were in the store to browse and one to pick up an appliance. We also made a purchase and even earned some Shop Your Way points.

Final pictures as we leave for our next destination. 

More to come, stay tuned.