Retailers hitch wagons to Broncos
Blue and orange sells this time of year, no matter the service or product.
Savvy business owners from across the city have hitched their wagons to the Broncos in an effort to attract the attention of donkey-addled fans with spare cash in their pockets.
Super Bowl merchandise sales could reach $200 million nationally, according to a Jan. 26 Denver Business Journal article, and local retailers are working hard to get a piece of the action.
The list of NFL-sanctioned Broncos goods available in Grand Junction this week include dinnerware, cups, tumblers, shot glasses, beer mugs, napkins, flags, posters, parking signs, stationary, notebooks, pencils, key chains and more.
Perhaps the craziest items can be found at Party Land, 2650 North Ave. The store, which opened 15 years ago when the Denver team last went to the Super Bowl, was quickly running out of party supplies for the big game as of Monday, but there were more on the way.
Matt Gallegos and his wife, Victoria, were at Party Land Monday searching for party plates and decorations, items they were unable to locate at larger retailers.
Boasting the “biggest living room and the best TV,” Gallegos plans to host 35 family and friends on Sunday.
“We’re having a hard time finding stuff specific to the colors for the game,” Gallegos said. “A lot of places seem to be sold out.”
More inventory was arriving from Kansas today, said Kelli McClelland, Party Land product manager.
“Everybody in the world is looking for blue,” McClelland said. “Everybody is looking to show off their spirit. Shop early. Don’t wait. When we run out this time, it’s going to be done.”
Broncos clothing was still available in numerous sizes and styles at several local stores as of Monday, but clerks reported inventory was selling fast and some lines were already sold out.
The racks of blue and orange clothing at Target were thinning Monday with extra large sizes noticeably absent.
There seemed to be plenty of child-sized T-shirts and hats, however, ranging in price from $16.99 for a Broncos baseball cap to $39.99 for a Broncos hoodie.
Prices for NFL-sanctioned items elsewhere ranged from $6.95 at the low end for a small poster of Peyton Manning available at Sports Authority to $155 at the high end for an official No. 18 Peyton Manning Broncos jersey available at Fanzz.
Ed Warner or Grand Junction picked through the racks at Fanzz with one hand in search of a Champ Bailey jersey while holding a bright orange Broncos golf shirt in the other was.
Warner was buying the collared shirt for business meetings this week but wanted the Bailey jersey for his wife. After two days of checking, the desired number 24 was still not in stock.
“Not that I didn’t already have enough Bronco paraphernalia, but we’re going to the Super Bowl again,” Warner said.
There were plenty of products not sanctioned by the NFL in stores this week that might still work for the more inspired Super Bowl host and hostess.
Shops with product lines far removed from the Denver football team’s stylized paraphernalia found items sufficiently blue and orange to stockpile at the storefront in an admirable attempt to catch the Broncos tsunami.
Tangle, 525 Main St., was taking orders for handmade blue and orange stocking caps.
Big Dog TV & Internet of Grand Junction, 545 North Ave., was giving away bottles of Orange Crush soda for free to anyone along with Broncos coffee mugs and T-shirts as premiums for people who signed a contract.
“We bleed orange and blue,” the store’s sign reads.
Main Street Bagels, 559 Main St., was selling blue and orange shortbread cookies and planned to have blue and green cookies in the case by Wednesday for misguided Seahawks fans.
Fisher’s Liquor Barn welcomed customers this week with an eight-foot-high pyramid of Svedka Vodka bottles bearing the brand’s standard navy blue or creamy orange labels.
“During Super Bowl, we see a huge spike in sales, beer especially, a lot of the pre-made drinks, margaritas, that kind of stuff. People tend to party it up a little more,” said Josh Matteson, Fisher’s Liquor Barn wine manager.
Jenna Fisher, a clerk at Fisher’s Market and Premium Natural Meats, 625 24 1/2 Road, said business was brisk as fans bought up the shop’s popular sirloin burgers and tender steaks.
“A lot of people are doing jalapeno poppers right now,” Fisher said. “They are selling like crazy. We’ve got a whole board of special orders.”
The story was much the same downtown.
Orange Nehi, Jolt Electric Blue, Pete’s Pumpkin Soda, blue and orange Jelly Bellys, blue and orange candy canes and blue and orange taffy were among the Super Bowl party supplies displayed in the front window at CandyTime Shoppe and Novelties, 500 Main St.
“The reason the Broncos got to the Super Bowl is because we’re supporting them, we’re backing them, and we put this awesome window together,” joked co-owner Ben Hall.
While sales leading up to the big game are attracting plenty of shoppers, several retailers said they expect Super Bowl Sunday to be a very slow day and will close their stores early.