News and Views

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Big Deals Attracts New Owner, New Name, New Deals

News Release
To: Noel Johnson,
September 15, 2009
Submitted by: Pat Nelson, Big Deals (360) 225-6157

On September 22, Rich and Heidi Wilson of Woodland will open Liquidation Center in the Big Deals location at 629-A Goerig Street, Woodland, next to Dollar Tree and across from Horseshoe Lake Park. The Wilsons have lived in the Woodland area for nine years and have children ages 6, 10, 14, and 15. Rich Wilson formerly operated the Fibre Cafeteria in Longview, and Heidi Wilson is a part-time phlebotomist and x-ray technician at the Longview Pediatric Clinic. They are also part owners of Streeters Resort in Silver Lake.

Rich Wilsons says, "My wife and I both look forward to bringing more discounted name-brand foods, tools, gifts, supplies, and seasonal items to Woodland and the surrounding area. The store will be a family affair. There’s no better way for children to learn work ethic than in the family business, and a business runs best with its owners on site."

The Wilsons are well-known in local Little League circles. Heidi coaches their 6-year-old son’s team, and Rich coaches the older boys. He has also just become president for the League. Because they have had to travel to Vancouver for team shirts and other school and sports-related items, they hope to carry those things in their new store.

"Customers will have to visit often," Rich says, "because many specials will be one-of-a-kind or in short supply, and if they don’t come in weekly, they could miss out."

Bob and Pat Nelson of Woodland, who opened their discount variety store Bird Boys in Woodland just after the 1996 flood and changed the name to Big Deals in 2002, are stepping out of retail to focus their attention on their growing wholesale business. In addition to the retail store, Big Deals operates a wholesale distribution center and showroom in Portland’s Delta Park, and the Nelsons have also recently taken their show on the road with a mobile showroom. The Nelsons operated Bird Boys discount variety stores in Vancouver for several years.

They are now wholesale distributors of Paricon and Wham-O snow sleds; Intex summer inflatables; winter wear such as socks, hats, and gloves; many varieties of tape and LED lights; wilderness, western, and other gift and décor items; and general variety goods to stores in Washington, Oregon, California, Idaho, and Utah.

According to Bob Nelson, "I started out in the liquidation business nearly 25 years ago after managing a liquidation store for Safeway. Over the years, I've had numerous stores, and the product mix has changed from all liquidation items to a mix of liquidated and regular goods. Rich plans to bring the excitement back into shopping by bringing in more liquidated goods...different deals all the time, things that will make shopping fun and at the same time will help save the Woodland residents some money."

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