Erik Saltrold, president of Erik’s Bike Shop in Bloomington, Minnesota has received products from Rossignol, Palmer, Nitro, Bonfire, Vans, and Quiksilver so far this season. “Shipping is better than prior years,” he says. “Things have been on time or within a close window.”
The shop brings in the first shipments in August, then trys to work on turns and reorder products through December for restocks. “I’ll take a smaller order up front and then hopefully reorder,” says Saltrold. “It’s better to risk having both shop and manufacturer running out of product than to have it left over in the store. But I’ve always been able to find stuff in season. We’re shifting the burden to the snowboard companies-but that’s why they’re called suppliers.”
At BJ’s Sport Shop in Minocqua, Wisconsin, shipments have been pretty average according to President Bob Jacobi. “We’ve probably gotten 50 percent of our orders shipped to us so far.” He’s already taken product from Burton and Ride, and Hyperlite has shipped everything complete.
Because snow starts falling early in his area of the country (usually by October 15) anything the shop doesn’t receive from suppliers will be cancelled by the first of November. So far, sales have been slow, with the shop clearing out a few of last season’s boards.
“Burton has shipped very well this season and we’ve already gotten its second shipment,” says Ken Griffin, general manager of Nichols Ski and Sport in Dearborn, Michigan. He says Burton is late with its step-in, but overall he’s impressed with the company. The shop has also received shipments from Salomon, K2, Vans, and Bonfire. Although the Ride and Liquid boards are late, Griffin expects them to be shipped in a week or so.
Nichols has had a good preseason so far, and Griffin says the local interest in snowboard products seems to be up this year over last.
Quest Outdoors in Louisville, Kentucky has already sold a few Burton boards, says Customer Sales Rep Matt McKee. The shop has received quite a bit of its Burton hard- and softgoods, while it’s still waiting for Lib Tech and Gnu boards, T-shirts, and sweatshirts.
“It’s still 100 degrees here,” says Bill Anton, co-owner of Mountain Sports in Arlington, Texas, “so people aren’t really thinking about buying snowboards.” Despite that fact, the company is bringing in a lot of its product and has sold a couple of boards already.
He says sales normally kick in around November after the local Ski Fest. The first cold spell in the region also helps things move out the door as well.
The shop has received about 75 percent of its Burton shipment, almost all of its Morrow, and some of the K2 product. “Some bindings and boots are late,” says Anton.