As recreation superintendent for the city of Pittsburg, Kim Vogel interacts with a lot of people throughout the community.



More than a year ago, Vogel began hearing many local residents complain of a lack of local options when it comes to purchasing party supplies.

As recreation superintendent for the city of Pittsburg, Kim Vogel interacts with a lot of people throughout the community.

More than a year ago, Vogel began hearing many local residents complain of a lack of local options when it comes to purchasing party supplies.

“My husband (Jesse) and I were hearing from several people around town that said there was no place to get supplies they needed, primarily for birthday parties and baby showers,” Vogel said.

So in the fall of 2007, the Vogels began tossing around the idea of finding a solution to the community’s concerns. And earlier this year, those ideas became a reality.

Party Supplies Unlimited, 620 S. Broadway, opened its doors on Oct. 13, just in time for three of the major holidays of the year – Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas.

As co-owner of the store, Kim Vogel is taking her first dip in the retail pool. And she’s doing it at a time when a struggling economy is making it difficult for many businesses, of various sizes, to survive. But Vogel is confident that the demand for the party supplies her store offers will make the venture a success.

“We had an idea of the potential for feeling the effects of the economy,” she said. “But we just thought, ‘If we can survive in this environment, we can survive anytime.’ People are still going to celebrate their kids’ birthdays. People will still celebrate weddings and new babies. There will always be a need for these kinds of items.”

Items offered include party-themed table settings – cups, plates, napkins – as well as seasonal items that help celebrate all of the major holidays. Greeting cards and balloon bouquets also are among the store’s inventory.

Vogel said while those who have entered the store have been “very receptive,” she said it may take more time and more exposure before it “takes off.”

“It’s just a matter of people finding out about us and getting in the door,” she said. “Everyone who does come in, however, seems to be pleased with what we’re offering.”

The store is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, and from 9 a.m to 5 p.m. on Saturday. Kim and Jesse both work full-time jobs outside of the store, so Kim’s mother, Pat Emerson, manages the store during the week. Kim said she is at the store every day after her work day with the city concludes, and every other chance she gets.

“I’m in here when I can be,” she said. “My vacation days are spent here. My lunchtime hour is often spent here and I’m here every day after 5 p.m.”

For anyone interested in seeing what the store has to offer, Emerson said today would be a good time to try it out, as discounts are being offered on Christmas and New Year’s supplies.