Council Allows Denison Thrift Shop To Keep Putting Items Out Alo - - No One Gets You Closer

Council Allows Denison Thrift Shop To Keep Putting Items Out Along Street

DENISON, TX -- Controversy is brewing over the way a local business is advertising, with some people saying a thrift store's displays on the street are making their town look trashy.

Should stores not in the downtown area be allowed to put things outside on the street for people to see?  For one business, they say it's a question that's crucial to their survival.

At a recent meeting, City Council members weren't sure what to do about the items on the street at Bargain Bin in the 1700 block of W. Morton Street.

"I don't think that it looks very good. It just looks like a garage sale," says Presley Solano.

"It kind of looks trashy," says Patty Potts. "I think that they should just advertise it a different way."

On a recommendation by city manager Robert Hanna, council members gave the store six more months to display their items as a trial period.

"We were zoned wrong to put it out," says store employee Melissa Leazenby.

 "Until they started setting stuff outside, I didn't know there was a thrift store there," says Renae Inouye.

Leazenby says the store has been open more than a year, but recently the city told them to move their stuff off the side of the street.

"We couldn't until we got permission, and then we went through all of the proper steps to get the permission," says Leazenby.

During those two months when they couldn't put anything outside, Leazenby says very few people were coming in.

"Our customers were like, 'Oh, why did you guys shut down for a couple months?'" says Leazenby. "I said we weren't."

"Honestly, with the bed bug epidemic and I see a lot of furniture out there, I wouldn't want to take that chance," says Solano.

The one time this really doesn't work is when it's raining, like when it started drizzling on Thursday afternoon. Then, they have to move everything back inside.

"What I've kind of thought about it is you know, somebody could easily stop by with a pickup and grab something and take off with it," says David Ogborn.

"It lets people know that they're there, that they're open for business," says Inouye.

Two people we talked to say the displays drew them in to buy something. "When you see something out, you want to stop and look at it, there it is. And you can't sell none if you can't show it," says shopper Shirley Freeland.

"I was driving by and I saw it out. They might want to get it in though because it's about to rain," says Robert Deardeuff.

The issue now goes back to the Planning and Zoning commission for further discussion. But some people say the stuff should stay.

"No more than what Wal-Mart would have having their stuff displayed outside, or any other store," says Ogborn.

"We gotta do what we gotta do to try to make a living these days and you just got to adapt and overcome, and it doesn't bother me not one bit for them having that out there," says Scott Ruble.

Leazenby says she and the store owner came from Grand Lake, Okla., and they want their business to make it. They've been warning their customers that even if they have to put everything inside in six months, they are still open.