Al's Sporting Goods

Adrie Johnson puts clothes onto a display table at Al’s Sporting Goods in Logan, Utah, on Dec. 20.

Al’s Sporting Goods aims to grow its reach in the coming year.

In August 2020, according to Al’s President Jason Larsen, the specialty sporting goods retailer will open its third location in Idaho Falls. The newest storefront will be in a 30,000 square-foot former Toys-R-Us building.

Larsen said opening a store across state lines is similar to opening in Utah, yet different. Idaho Falls is also close in proximity to the Snake River, Palisades Reservoir and Yellowstone National Park, leading to plenty of outdoor activities. He said opening a store in Bonneville County has been considered for years — the family-oriented community reminds Larsen of Logan.

“We love the community,” Larsen said. “We can’t think of a better spot to open store number three.”

Larsen said the footprint of the store will be similar to their location in Orem, which opened nearly three years ago, and they will continue to partner with multiple vendors to create “boutique” concepts for retail.

“It’s in our DNA, almost,” Larsen said. “We’re really, really passionate about retailing. We’re really passionate about the gear that we sell.”

Larsen said the nature of online retail today is certainly not the norm of years past. Many stores are struggling, Larsen said, and ultimately closing. For Al’s, Larsen said they do lots of e-commerce — fulfilling thousands of online orders from their stores. He said nearly everything available in-store is available for purchase online.

Larsen said opening an additional store is expected to help Al’s online business by allowing for additional inventory and capacity to fulfill online orders.

“We’re just fighting tooth and nail to keep on going,” Larsen said, “and we are.”

According to a press release, Al’s was founded in 1921 in Logan by Alvin Moroni Larsen who “borrowed $500 using only a $10 Mexican coin and a handshake as collateral to purchase inventory for a cycling and fishing store.” Originally called Al’s Bike, the store has evolved into the sporting goods retailer known today: “the oldest full-line sporting goods retailer in the state of Utah.”

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