Stephen ThompsonAt Rudy’s Happy Patch Market, the importance of inventory display is something Stuart Perry learned in childhood. His parents operated a gas station in downtown Buena Vista, and his mother filled it with displays of ferns and blooming plants from their home garden and greenhouse.


“I believe in product freshness and display rotation,” Stuart says today. “My mother taught me that there was a right way to present the prettiest plants and ferns to sell. It seemed to work!”


Throughout the spring and summer market season, Stuart has made a point to rotate the many displays of locally grown produce and to monitor inventory for both freshness and presentation. He makes it a point to pass his tips on to others.


“I try to share things with our market staff that I learned years ago, when we had the gas station and market,” Stuart explains. 


Stephen Thompson, a market clerk pictured, right, is happy for his boss’ daily time in the market. “It doesn’t bother me that Stuart visits and greets customers at Happy Patch Market,” he states. “That is a key, but he also wants to make our displays better and more inviting to customers.”


 Debbie BasaillonMarket clerk Debbie Basaillon, below, finds that product display techniques at the market remind her of her experiences with retail giant Walmart. “I know that the ‘Walmart way’ works, “she says. “I worked with them in the past, and we had to move and rotate and cap displays.” She shares the example of “point of purchase” racks at checkout, citing them as a top money maker for larger businesses. 


Customers can take satisfaction in knowing that Rudy’s Happy Patch Market applies both the lessons of major retailers with the personal service of rural markets from days gone by.

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