Carrie Rengers

An Old Town mainstay is leaving, but perhaps not for long

Sandbar Trading owners Richard and Julie Gottsponer with some of their store’s merchandise.
Sandbar Trading owners Richard and Julie Gottsponer with some of their store’s merchandise. Courtesy photo

One of the mainstays of Old Town retail is leaving, but perhaps not for long.

Sandbar Trading’s lease is expiring at 922 E. Douglas, and owners Richard and Julie Gottsponer have decided to look for new space they can buy. In fact, Richard Gottsponer says he wishes that’s what they had done more than 15 years ago when they moved their shop to the area.

“You know, vision is not always so good.”

He says the store will remain open through the holidays, and then in January, he and his wife will pack and – if they don’t have somewhere to move – continue to do shows and their wholesale business.

“We’ve never quit doing shows anyway,” Gottsponer says.

He says their preference is to remain in Old Town because east-side and west-side customers seem to be willing to drive that far.

“Farther than that, it’s like, gosh, we’ve got to pack dinner, and we need to bring a suitcase.”

The Gottsponers also have looked centrally in Delano and the Douglas Design District.

Sandbar Trading is known for its southwest and American Indian items, including jewelry, rugs and pottery, but Richard Gottsponer says the store also sells a lot of art, including entire collections from various individuals who have all kinds of styles.

“It’s gotten bigger and bigger and bigger for us.”

For that reason, he says, “We might even do a name change after all these years.”

Gottsponer says upgrades to the store’s website are coming. He’s not sure, though, when he’ll have news on a possible new location.

“We would prefer something sooner than later.”

Carrie Rengers: 316-268-6340, @CarrieRengers

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