Apr 142004
Authors: Jesse McLain

Pete Borba isn’t looking forward to summer.

As owner of Sullivan’s Tavern, 820 City Park Ave., Borba relies

on college students for 90 to 95 percent of his business, and he

misses them when they go home after spring classes.

“We’ll lose probably 25 to 30 percent of our business,” Borba

said. “We just kind of have to figure that in.”

For businesses that lose key customers when summer sends college

students home, many alternatives are implemented to keep business

afloat. Borba said since many of his employees are college students

who return home for the summer, it balances out the summer’s

smaller budget. Still, Borba looks forward to classes resuming in

the fall.

“Most of my employees are students, so it kind of works out,”

Borba said. “We try to kick the new year off right.”

Borba is not alone in his dependency on college students. Even

though A Desired Look Tanning Salon, 3700 S. Mason St., only

receives 20 percent of its business from college students, Manager

Sara Ludwig wouldn’t mind if they stuck around over the summer.

“College kids are usually the most likely to tan through the

summer but they go home,” Ludwig said. “I definitely think they

have a large impact, especially on the downtown area with all the

restaurants and bars.”

Rams Book Store, 130 W. Laurel St., is another local business

that relies heavily on college-student customers. Griff Kull, owner

and manager of the store, and his family have operated the business

for college students since 1977.

“March and April are probably our slowest times of the year,

since students aren’t buying many books now,” Kull said. “There are

summer sessions and Preview over the summer, so that helps out a

little bit.”

Kull’s business not only sells books but also CSU apparel. This

helps sales increase considerably in the fall because the football

team starts up again.

“The football team really drives the role of the license

merchandise,” Kull said. “When the basketball team does well that

helps, too.”

Even though students may only be reliable customers nine months

of the year, Kull and Borba would never want it any other way.

“I love college students. I don’t think I would own a regular

bar,” Borba said. “I just love being here. I’m just an old man with

five grandkids. It keeps me young.”

 Posted by at 5:00 pm

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.