Eureka Springs FBLA hosts pop-up store
By Haley Schichtl
Eureka Springs FBLA students are learning all about what it means to run a business.
Through a partnership with Main Street Eureka Springs, the students held a pop-up business selling T-shirts and other items at Basin Spring Park on Saturday, Dec. 7. They also sold T-shirts at school and at basketball games throughout that month.
FBLA adviser Rachael Moyer said Main Street expressed an interest in partnering with the Eureka Springs students, saying they came up with the concept together.
"At the same time, I was teaching a class called Arkansas hospitality and tourism and we were developing business plans," Rachael Moyer said, "and the idea that Main Street came up with was: What if we gave them the opportunity to implement their business plan?”
She said her students created business plans in the classroom and presented them to Main Street. Of all the projects, Rachael Moyer said, Main Street chose the pop-up shop in Basin Spring Park.
“So they went from developing an idea for a business all the way through business plan development, to staffing to buying all the supplies, implementing the project and realizing the profits and losses,” she said. “So they really took it from beginning to end.”
Main Street director Jacqueline Wolven said she and Jack Moyer, who is the chair at Main Street and an FBLA adviser, helped at the pop-up shop.
“They had key roles and responsibilities and were leading the whole operation. We were merely guides and support,” Wolven said. “Main Street Eureka Springs is committed to entrepreneurship at every level. We’re also committed to helping our community love where they live and see opportunities for growth. Helping FBLA checks both of those boxes and is a great way for our organization to give back a little.”
Rachael Moyer, who also teaches business, said her classes and the club help prepare students for careers.
“There’s a lot of concepts we learn, but being able to take those from concept to application –– understanding how a profit and loss is actually used –– is really important for when they go out and start working in businesses themselves,” she said.
Rachael Moyer said they began the project at the beginning of class in August, and completed the plans in December.
The students in the club designated officers who would handle the main responsibilities.
“I was in charge of accounting. I handled most of the money,” FBLA officer Carson Mowrey said.
“I was in charge of a lot of the marketing and advertising for it, and organizing of the different groups,” officer Grayson Ertel said.
FBLA member Levi Crider said he was one of the ones responsible for selling the shirts.
“We learned about margins and how to determine what a profitable business is versus something that loses money when it attracts people to your business,” Crider said.
Jack Moyer said he and Wolven initiated the partnership and were there when the students picked the officers.
“We coached the officers through the production of the event, then I helped them with the financial analysis at the far end,” Jack Moyer said. “Jackie and Rachael handled the Santa at the park event and food and beverage. I advised the sales team. I advised the general manager.”
He said the project included having a general manager, a sales manager, an accountant and an operations manager.
“They understood about the different roles about what it takes to operate a business,” Jack Moyer said. “They understand that not everything makes money. You might need food and beverage even though food and beverage doesn’t necessarily make money in that scenario. The things that had a high profit margin, the T-shirt and photos by Santa –– they happen because you have a whole event. You can’t just have all the stuff that sells a lot.”
At the pop-up store in the park, the students made a gross income of $1,001. Jack Moyer helped the students calculate the net income, which came to $621 and will go toward general FBLA expenses, including their yearly Thanksgiving baskets for families in need.
Another thing the students learned through the pop-up shop, Jack Moyer said, is that working in sales can be more difficult than it seems.
“They were very confident that they’d sell every T-shirt, but I think this made them realize that not everybody needs a T-shirt,” Jack Moyer said. “Sales is a difficult game and I think they learned that. It requires effort and I think they saw what it takes effort-wise.”
There are still some T-shirts available. They can be purchased for $10 each in Rachael Moyer’s classroom at the high school or by contacting her at firstname.lastname@example.org.