Summer sales heating up

By Janet Bresenham

With summer fast approaching and already reaching the 100-degree mark, the thoughts of shoppers appear to be turning toward backyard barbecues, landscaping and staying cool.
Hank Bean, a sales associate in the Garden Center at Clovis’ Wal-Mart Supercenter, said the store has been busy selling summer-type items the last two weeks.
“We are selling quite a few barbecue grills out here,” Bean said. “What’s really moving are the outdoor canopy swings. We’re usually sold out of those each time we get a new shipment. And inside, we’re selling quite a few of the wading pools.”
Some people even were looking for ways to help other creatures in the heat.
“We don’t do the barbecue thing, but we put out a bird bath,” said Diane Christesson. “Now that the weather’s nicer, we do some landscaping, too, and plant some vines.”
At the Burns Hardware Do-It Center, assistant manager Joe Rodriguez said barbecue grills still remain one of the most popular items for summer preparation.
“We’ve been selling them pretty good,” Rodriguez said. “We sell a lot of the Weber grills year-round, too.”
When it comes to serious cooling off with an in-ground pool, people tend to plan ahead, as well.
“People generally start looking around the first of May because if they’re getting a pool, they want it open for Memorial Day,” said Judy Jones, owner of Lone Star Pool and Spa in Clovis. “It’s been really busy.”
Despite Sunday’s scorching sun, a steady stream of people were flocking to load up at Wal-Mart on flowers for planting, along with decorative items for the garden and the yard.
“I got some stones to put in the front yard,” said Manee Bloink, as she and her husband Tim looked for some petunias to add to the mix.
Marjorie Watkins filled a basket full with colorful flowers to plant outside the house she bought three years ago in Farwell.
“I got some flowers to put in and fool the neighbors into thinking I have a garden,” Watkins said, with a laugh. “I don’t have any grass. I buy for my yard all the time now.”