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Creative Leisure News
306 Parker Circle
Lawrence, KS 66049
Phone: 785-760-5071
Email: mike@clnonline.com



Date: January 21, 2002
Vol. VI, No. 2

Printer Version


bulletCommentary: Interesting People
bulletJanlynn Expands Again
bulletEarly Trade Show Report
bulletA.C. Moore: Sales Up, Stock To Sell
bulletPersonnel Changes at A.C. Moore
bulletPredictions for the New Year
bulletIn Their Own Words: Comments About 2002
bulletA Publisher's Predictions
bulletNew York Times Boosts Crafts
bulletHIA Show Product Preview
bulletA Unique Show-Magazine Combo
bulletRandom Notes, Random Thoughts
bulletMiscellaneous News
bulletThe Creative Network: Job Openings
bulletTHE CLN Retail Index


I leave for HIA today for a few days of visiting relatives and won't be accessing my email. If you need to contact me, I'm at the West Coast Anaheim -- 714-750-1811. (On what other coast would an Anaheim hotel be?) Any problems with receiving the newsletter, please call 815-877-7975.

Each month in CNA magazine , I conduct a brief interview under the banner, "Speak Out." Lately I've conducted some particularly interesting ones. In the current, January issue, I spoke with Peter Russo of New Approach Development, a top product developer and one if the best minds in the industry. His advice on evaluating new products is as good as any I've ever heard.

Mike McCooey of Plaid is February's subject, and he talks bluntly about the changes there. A couple of years ago, he told me he liked the industry because "a good year is only one good idea away." He still believes that, but admits bringing that good idea to store shelves isn't as easy as it once was.

The March issue has Mike Cheney, the firefighter/sculptor who will be the guest of honor at the grand opening of the HIA show on Sunday morning. His sculpture of a fireman at the World Trade Center (shown in CNA 's November issue) is remarkable -- but even more remarkable is the man himself. Folks, he's the kind of guy you want your daughters to marry.

For information on buying a copy of his wonderful piece, contact Cheney Studios, 346 Ryan Trail, Brownsburg, IN 46112. Call 800-811-8861 or 317-858-3736; email cheneystudios@aol.com; or visit www.swiftsite.com/cheneystudios.

Reminder: CNA 's Karen Ancona and I are moderating a panel discussion of some of the industry's top independents on Sunday, January 27, from 4:00 pm to 5:30. Tickets can be purchased at the convention center -- except for manufacturers. HIA rules say manufacturers can't buy workshop tickets, but we can get around that. If a manufacturer would like to attend, email Karen or call her at 570-646-8524, and she'll get you a ticket.

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Janlynn acquired the craft kit, floss, and accessories division of Leisure Arts/Designs for the Needle (DFN). "With this acquisition, we combine strong product offerings, licensing relationships, and designers from two large needlecraft kit competitors to become one of the largest needlecraft kit producers in the world," said John Kozub, President/CEO of Janlynn.

Janlynn has begun shipping LA/DFN kit and accessories products from its Springfield, MA location. The company will feature its newly expanded lines next week at the HIA show.

Janlynn was founded in 1979 by John's father, Ed, and remains a family-owned business. The website is www.janlynn.com. Leisure Arts, a division of AOL/Time Warner, will continue to publish and distribute instruction books.

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Reports are generally quite positive for shows held this month. The exception was the Housewares show in Chicago. As for the others:

TNNA in San Diego had its biggest show in years.

One vendor report from Holiday Expo in Dallas said it was a great show.

As for the retailers' mood, one CLN subscriber who sells to a very wide variety of types of retailers said the buyers' "comments were that Xmas cleanup was excellent. Margins might be off slightly, but they were relieved to have moved the merchandise. The only area where I heard somewhat the opposite view was in Florida for some strange reason. Someone said they were too busy recounting votes!"

Trends: "For many years now, clear has been the choice for a huge share of outside Christmas lights. But customers this month are booking orders for the traditional -- reds, greens, and blues. The pendulum has swung drastically back to these American Christmas colors."

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A.C. Moore's fourth-quarter sales rose 31.5% to $122.6 million and same-store sales jumped 15%. For the year, sales rose 26.8% to $332.4 million and same-store sales were up 8%. CEO Jack Parker said results "were achieved through a strong merchandising and marketing plan developed and executed by our merchants and superbly exploited by our store teams."

The company also filed a registration statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission for a proposed public offering of 2,550,000 shares of its common stock through an underwriting group led by Adams, Harkness & Hill. When available, copies of the preliminary prospectus relating to the offering may be obtained from Adams, Harkness & Hill, Inc., 60 State St., Boston, MA 02109.

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President Larry Fine announced a number of changes in the headquarters staff for A.C. Moore. In the marketing area, Bryan Stoetzer was promoted to VP of Marketing, and Mike Lyons was promoted to Director of Marketing. Both report to Janet Parker.

Dave Bellumori returns to Store Operations as a field VP, reporting to Jack Robinson.

New Senior Buyers: Rebecca Quigley, formerly of Zany Brainy, for apparel/jewelry; Sally Batko for stitchery/yarn/books; and Leroy Beckerman for seasonal. New Buyers include Cindy Hawk for candles and Ray Zawistowski for wood.

Susan Hardie (floral accessories) and Al Gaudio (seasonal/candles) left the company.

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Many of you responded to our request for predictions/guesstimates on how the industry will fare in 2002. Here's a summary of responses -- with the understanding that all bets are off if there are additional terrorist attacks in this country.

CATEGORIES, UP. Knitting, crochet, quilting, home dec sewing, needlework ... scrapbooks, stamping, cardmaking, exotic paper ... florals, ribbon ... basics, dolls, beads, candlemaking, soapmaking, kids' crafts ... wearable art, jewelrymaking, clay.

CATEGORIES, FLAT. Decorative painting, seasonal, plaster, apparel sewing.

DESIGN. The Olympics and Memorial day will help maintain the high level of interest in patriotic designs and colors. The interest will last through the 4th of July, then will decline.

CHAIN STORES. The industry is optimistic about Michaels, Hancock, Hobby Lobby, A.C. Moore, Rag Shops, and Wal-Mart. The jury's still out about Jo-Ann's. ("They need more clerks in the stores.") and Frank's. No one mentioned Ames.

INDEPENDENTS. Most think independents will remain the same; some think they'll decline. New memory/stamping stores will continue to appear.

GENERAL ECONOMY. Recession will last through the first half of the year, then generally improve. Most, but not all, thought the tough economy and rising unemployment will help the industry somewhat. Interest rates may start to rise in the second half of the year, as the economy improves. Inflation will not be a problem.

CONSUMERS. The cocooning (stay at home) trend will continue. That means more family activities, home dec, and memorials. The increased yearning for life's basics will continue, too, so there will be more gift making. Fear of flying will diminish, so places like Disneyland will see attendance levels return to normal.

MARKETING. About half are increasing their marketing and ad budgets, but vendors and buyers are taking a long hard look at how the money is spent. Some are trying to think "outside the box" and find new ways to reach their current and prospective customers. Vendors are looking more closely at all trade shows. They won't take the same amount of booth space at the same shows and send the same number of employees just because they've always done it.

RETAIL, GENERAL. Look for a number of chains to close some stores, some to declare bankruptcy, and others to sell to a larger, stronger competitor.

MISCELLANEOUS. Consolidation continues, especially at the vendor level ... Vendors who are #4 or lower in market share in a particular category will find it hard to maintain sales without very aggressive marketing programs ... The stocks in our CLN Retail Index will rise again this year, but not as much as in 2001 ... Overall industry growth will be in the middle single digits -- better than the national economy and retailing in general.

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MANUFACTURERS' REP. "Good retailers, large and small, will grow. Small retailers will have to hit a niche to attract traffic; big retailers will have to use pricing. Margins will shrink, putting pressure on efficiency and effectiveness of merchandising. Value is the priority."

CONSULTANT. "Staying home calls for feel-good, cozy settings and apparel. Even jeans manufacturers are seeing the big switch from snug fitting to stretch and comfort and jeans with a worn-in look."

MANUFACTURER. "Our travel budget is always watched. We will continue to travel as needed, but only when needed. I encourage the use of Saturday night stays when possible and do so myself."

SERVICE SUPPLIER. "I am increasing my advertising budget by visiting clients and having stronger attendance and presence at trade shows. Now is the worst time to cut advertising and visibility dollars. I will cut elsewhere, but not in staff; they are my life blood."

INDEPENDENT. "When I opened in 1983, I was a general craft shop, but over the years have remolded myself several times. My craft section is all cross stitch and doing fine. I have noticed since 9/11 a steady upward swing in sales. I have been pushing Stitching Soothes the Heart ... Framing is our bread & butter. It's good business because people love to frame memories. We also frame needlework, something a lot of larger framers do not do well ... I think now is a good time to open a business. Start small and in a slow economy one can only grow up. Be patient. Watch your overhead carefully."

PUBLISHER. "Crafting today is about personalization, cozy homes, individualized projects, and personal satisfaction. Women want results like they see in upscale home decor and fashion magazines. They want to be proud to display handmade projects in their homes, or give or wear the crafts they have made."

MANUFACTURER. "We think Jo-Ann's will return to profitability, but they MUST reduce their debt."

INDEPENDENT. "We have increased our trade show travel budget. We know we must work harder and smarter if we are to capture our share of the craft market going forward. We must know what is new and exciting."

WHOLESALER. "This will be a year to make sure all our basics are in place so that when the opportunities arise we are ready."

CONSULTANT. "This may be the year when vendors finally rebel against the unreasonable demands of the chains. The chains have to start trying to make a profit from the consumers, not the vendors."

IMPORTER. "Our sales are great as more people look for value merchandise. I think it will continue in home decor ... We have dropped two gift shows that are no longer productive."

MANUFACTURER. "Our industry will flourish in 2002 because the war on terror will drag on, promoting more stay-at-home crafting and patriotic gesturing (i.e., quilting clubs all over are donating 9/11 quilts to the affected and others). We intend to double or triple our ad and marketing budget, due principally to new product launches, but also to garner mind share and market share in an environment that's ripe (i.e., go for market share when things are bad)."

IMPORTER. "The fervor for patriotic products has dwindled to a trickle, but events such as Memorial Day and the 4th of July could be bigger than ever, especially in rural, hometown America, home of the independent retailer."

MANUFACTURER. "Ribbon will be strong for 2002. Many shops, afraid to bolster inventory this past year, will need to replenish because they sold down -- and out -- of lots of stock, seasonal and otherwise. However, seasonal will shrink. Christmas sales were not as strong as last year ... Patriotic interest will remain strong, and with luck it will be from true patriotic feeling rather than another tragedy."

INDEPENDENT. "Independents will do well IF they keep on top of the market and their customer. We will always have to work hard to obtain our share. We are planning and budgeting for an increase for 2002. We must do things that the chains are not doing -- namely, customer service, being on top of changes, and changing our displays often."

MANUFACTURER. "Many of those at home will make their own gifts, make their own cards, venture into crafts and hobbies to keep busy, and do something enjoyable. Many will discover life's little pleasures'!"

CRAFT INDEPENDENT. "Memory is still growing because vendors are making it easier for the customer. We had a good year even though there was more competition from small independents ... I am amazed at the growth of needlework! Who would have guessed this category would be so hot? We certainly did not, and missed early sales; this category took a big jump after the 9-11, and we see new product being introduced that will spur needlework until at least the summer ... Quilting is growing every day. We are attracting new customers at every event. Many have no quilting experience at all. Our first Saturday QUILT CLUB met at 8 a.m. and we filled the space available with 68 interested customers!"

DISTRIBUTOR. "The craft industry better figure out soon how to entice younger, less patient crafters!"

MANUFACTURER. "If we run our business scared and hold back, not producing or trying new products and doing the same old thing, then business will be slow. But if we continue to use solid business principals, take advantage of the opportunities, innovate, and work hard, then 2002 will be a super year."

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Suzanne McNeill of Design Originals listed some craft areas she thinks will grow in 2002.

Wearables. Tie-dye and rubber stamping designs, and beads, metals, plastic, clay and cording ... The silver look for wire jewelry.

Paper Crafts. New techniques such as eyelets, paper piecing, and paper quilting, plus origami and tea bag folding ... Plan for more elegant heirloom scrapbooks and greeting cards.

Kids' Crafts. Pony beads, jewelry, wood parts, clay, shrink plastic, paper, and patriotic crafts; kids are eager to try scrapbooking, paper piecing, punching, vellum translucents, and tea-bag folding.

Rubber Stamps. Are combining with Friendly Plastic, polymer clay, leather, shrink plastic, paper clay, wearable art, and home dec items.

Metals & Wire. Are partnering with candles and clay. Embossing, crimping, stamping and shaping metal will be a new look. And mesh will be a new texture -- when designers include it in projects and retailers stock more metal supplies.

Beads. Watch for a new wave of bead lovers to enter the market looking to glamorize embellishments to wear and for home decor.

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The New York Times published another pro-craft article, "Arts-and-Crafts Stores Defy Retailing's Slump," highlighting the strong performances (sales and stock prices) of Michaels and A.C. Moore.

The article was not as positive about Jo-Ann's, citing its lower sales/sq. ft. and its $325 million debt. Jo-Ann's CFO Brian Carney told the Times the company plans to erase $100 million of the debt in the next two years.

Other tidbits from the article: An analyst for the investment firm of Adams, Harkness & Hill said the average shopper spends $18 each visit to one of our chain stores ... The price-to-earnings ratio is 35 for Lowe's and 40 for Home Depot, but only 22 for Michaels ... Various analysts told the Times the three chains' stocks had not yet peaked.

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ACCU-CUT. (#6525) Introduces the GrandeMARK Roller Die Cutting Machine, the company's first new machine in almost eight years. It's oversized for versatile cutting, with giant dies for larger shapes. It also has new die-cutting technology for exacting cuts. It has a a 16" x 20" inch tray that accommodates all Accu-Cut die sizes, including new giant dies that cut 10" x 17" shapes. Works for fabric crafts and rubber stamps, too. Visit www.accucut.com.

ADHESIVE TECH. (#2313) The Ultimate Glue Gun has an 8' cord; a no-drip, insulated nozzle; an extra-wide stand; a more affordable price; and a two-year warranty ... Ultimate Glue Sticks work with most surfaces and have an open working time up to 60 seconds ... The BOND-IT glue system is instant bonding power in a non-electrical, portable applicator. The applicator resembles a small home improvement-style caulking gun. Crafters attach a 1-oz Bond-It glue cartridge into the gun and squeeze the trigger. A simple plunger pushes glue out of the cartridge, so there is no waste. Bonds most surfaces ... Also, Bond-It Foam Glue for foam and Bond-It Seasonal Glitter Glues in red, green, and gold. Visit www.adhesivetech.com.

ALDASTAR. (#3232) Between Us is a line of six sheets of temporary fabric rub-on transfers for clothing, back packs, etc. for "tweens". Washes off; is also acid-free for permanent use in scrapbooking or solid surfaces ... SHAGZ is a line of washable, elegant, pompoms for home dec and apparel embellishment. 20 colors in three sizes.

BAGWORKS. (#3224) The Stars and Stripes Collection includes totes, aprons, hot pads, and a can wrap, all in stars-and-stripes fabrics ... A new washed denim line ... Two new tote groups -- Market Bag and a Shopper Tote in three sizes and mutiple colors ... Also, an album tote for scrapbookers, a mini backpack and purse, laundry bags, hot pad, and a junior chef apron. Show specials: a $25 free lunch with a $250 order, and 10% off all new products.

BOND AMERICA. (#7021) Will demonstrate making knitted wire jewelry with its Magicord Machine, and will feature its Ultimate Sweater Machine.

HOT OFF THE PRESS. (#8534) The very latest memory-page books are Muted Tints and Soft & Subtle Textures (both 8.5" x 11"), and Soft Collage (11.75" x 12"). There are 122 new items in memory, card-making, and crafts.

JACK DEMPSEY NEEDLEART. (#5507) The new catalog illustrates a wide variety of new kits -- patriotic items, quilting, pillowcase dolls, scarves, table toppers, etc.

KOKUYO. (#6948) Introducing Kaddy, a self-standing supply tote for scrappers and crafters; Tape n' Roller, acid-free, double-stick tape with a roller cartridge; Color n Color polypropylene-covered notebooks, memo books, and vinyl erasers.

MIDWEST PRODUCTS. (#3217) Two new sizes (4" x 12" and 12" x 12", in 4 thicknesses) in the economical craft plywood line ... New woodworking tools include a Hobby & Craft Square, a Scale Lumber Gauge, and a Super Easy Cutter. Also, 12 new SKU's of Scale Lumber. Visit the booth or www.midwestproducts.com for new project sheets.

PERSONAL STAMP EXCHANGE/PSX. (#9006) Offering seven new Design A Card kits containing all the necessary supplies, instructions, and a Tips and Techniques booklet. The line includes Christmas, garden, all-occasion, Valentine's, and a kit for kids. Visit www.psxdesign.com.

RANGER. (#9513). You'll see the booth from a distance -- an 11-ft. Stamp Stix of Uncle Sam promoting the Stamp Stix kit line, each a themed set of 6 stamps and up to 6 washable ink colors in a 3-D toy providing up to 31 combinations ... Also Melt Art, in which malleable materials can be melted, then items dipped into The Melting Pot appliance to make three-dimensional artifacts for jewelry and other uses. Also, Dee Gruenig's new Poshtel Inkabilities, copper accent pen, and Tileabilties (a kit of 6 square compressed sponges). Also, Antiquities pads and powders and a wide variety of booth demonstrations.

SEARCH PRESS. (#2844) Will debut The Art of Drawing, Beginners Guides to Needlecrafts, and The Handmade Greeting Card series. There are also new additions to the Step by Step Leisure Arts and Step by Step Children's Crafts series; new single titles on various craft trends (beads, wire, gel candles, etc.); a simplified discount program; 2002 catalog; and six peggable wire displays designed to cross-merchandise books with associated products. Visit www.searchpress.com.

VICTORIA PAPERS. (#9746) New items: Pineapple Papers from Indonesia and Mizutama lace papers from Japan, and a 10% discount on the Punjab Deluxe watercolor journal.

WALNUT HOLLOW. (#4533) Will celebrate its 30th anniversary in the craft industry -- in the booth and throughout the year.

WESTRIM. Will have two booths -- in the craft area (#4840) for its beads and general crafts, and a new island booth in the scrapbooking area (#8729).

WRIGHTS. (#6510) Signed a licensing agreement with Disney and will unveil a new line of Disney designs in many various product lines -- appliques, patches with matching trims, printed ribbons and blanket binding, and EZ Quilting Sliding Stencils -- in "Pooh," "Princess," and "Mickey and Minnie" themes.

YALEY. (#2913) All Natural Soy Wax for Containers, a blend of soy beans and botanical oils, is a one-pour, cleaner burning container wax -- a natural alternative to paraffin waxes. Use with Yaley's scents, dyes, and wicks. Available in 1-lb. containers and larger sizes.

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Memories Expo and Memory Makers magazine have announced that Memory Makers will be the exclusive event partner for the Expo consumer scrapbook/stamp shows. Memory Makers will have an increased level of involvement in educational workshops, contests, cropping parties, and other activities at each of the five Expo events.

Memories Expo hosted its first convention in 1997 and now includes shows in Las Vegas, Chicago, New Jersey, Denver, and Orlando. In 2001, Memories Expo established Memories Community, a national association combining enthusiasts and manufacturers. Memory Makers, a division of F&W Publications, is a bimonthly publication with a global readership of 500,000+.

Contact Memories Expo at 740-452-4541; visit www.memoriesexpo.com; or email memories@offinger.com. Contact Memory Makers or F&W Publications at 303-452-1968, or visit www.memorymakersmagazine.com or www.fwpublications.com.

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1. Received an email recently from a craft/home dec company looking for reps to service independent stores. It's a growing company, but I know some reps believe it isn't cost effective to call on independents. If you're interested and want to talk to the company at the HIA show, call me at the West Coast Anaheim, 714-750-1811.

2. Sign of the times: I received the HIA 2002 Pre-show Planner which has an exhibitor list divided into sections -- Art Materials/Scrapbooking/Frames, Fabric/Sewing/Needlecraft, Florals & Naturals, and General Crafts. I noticed there are more exhibitors in the Art/Scrap/Frame area than in the Craft area.

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HOLIDAY SALES. Hancock's same-store sales rose 17.8% ... Jo-Ann's rose 11% ... Michaels' (Thanksgiving-Christmas) rose 13%, 11% compared to the previous year which had one fewer shopping day ... Wal-Mart's were up 8.2% and sales for the year exceeded $200 billion for the first time ... There figures were much better than most retailers. For example: Ann Taylor, -2.4% ... Federated Department Stores (Macy's, Bloomingdale's, etc.) -8.6% ... Gap, -18.6% ... J.C. Penney, +5.4% ... Sears, -2.4% ... Target, +0.6% ... Kmart, -1.0%.

2002. The National Retail Federation predicted 2002 sales would grow to 3.7% from 2.2% last year, Reuters reported. The NRF cited low interest rates, falling energy prices, low inflation, mortgage refinancing, and hopes of a stock market recovery, as causes for increased consumer spending.

AMES. Issued a press release saying its negotiations with the creditors committee are going very well, and they are "working diligently toward the development of a consensual plan of reorganization that will enable Ames to emerge from bankruptcy this year." Chair/CEO Joseph Ettore said, "Ames has had a successful holiday season in all respects including sales, gross margins, and earnings." ... The bankruptcy judge changed the deadline for Ames' exclusive period during which to file a reorganization plan to May 31st, and the deadline to solicit acceptance of the plan to July 30.

KEN GRIFFIN. A group of Ken Griffins' friends are organizing a "Remembering Ken" get-together at HIA on Saturday, Jan. 26 from 6 - 9 pm at the Anaheim Marriott. "Ken's wife, Barbara, daughters Monica and Michelle, and son Rob will be with us," write Georganne Bender and Bob Ferguson, "as we share legendary Kenisms,' engage in one or more of Ken's favorite activities, and honor his memory for what he was to all of us -- a great friend and inspiration. Vendors, retailers, and others who knew and loved Ken are welcome."

YARN. The Today Show will have a mini fashion show of Lion Brand Yarn projects from the new magazine, Knit It , on Jan. 25. A tape will be at Lion's HIA booth, #6121.

SHIPPING. Michaels selected the web-based i2 FreightMatrix transportation management software to synchronize and manage transportation processes between 2,000+ suppliers, 5 distribution centers, and almost 700 stores.

DESIGNS. Apparently the gift industry doesn't think the interest in patriotic items will fade any time soon. About a fourth of Gift & Decorative Accessories' January issue was devoted to "American Spirit", a section featuring Americana and patriotic home dec accessories, candles, jewelry, ornaments, toys, frames, etc., that will be available at the upcoming gift shows.

SALES. The acquisition of FAO Schwarz by Right Start has been completed for 5 million shares of Right Start stock (worth about $25 million) and an $18 million loan. FAO Schwarz had been owned by a European company, Vendex KBB. The stock for Right Start, which purchased the Zany Brainy chain last year, trades on NASDAQ under the symbol RTST.

CLOSURE. ShopKo will close its Pamida division distribution facility in Bethany, Mo., no later than March 15th.

PEOPLE. Kim Meyer of Jacquard Products/Rupert, Gibbon and Spider has the new position of Director of Marketing and Sales.

QUILLING. The next issue of Martha Stewart Living is devoting 9 pages to this lovely paper craft.

BEST WISHES. Our very best to Karen Kelly, who is seriously ill. Karen is the wife of Jim Kelly, who was president of Michaels when it went public. Karen is at the Amerimed Hospital, Edificio Pioneros Local 1, Col. Medano, Cabo San Lucas, BCS, Mexico.

TRAVEL TIP. In our last issue we offered some suggestions in case you lose your wallet or purse. Here's one more: Make a photo copy of your driver's license and/or passport and keep the copies in a secure place -- separate from the original.

QUOTATION. "If today's numbers are ok, that means you were smart yesterday. It doesn't mean it's appropriate for tomorrow." -- Oren Harari

GLASS. The Art Glass show will be June 28-30 in Nashville; call 888-866-2472, email agsa.info@offinger.com, or visit www.agsa.org.

TV. The kids' PBS series, Hands On, is up to 57 million households and 120 markets.

TRAVEL. A survey sponsored by the Int. Assn. of Exposition Managers revealed 66% of the business-traveler respondents believe a relevant trade show is still worth attending, despite budget/safety concerns ... Almost a third said trade shows are more important now than before September 11 ... 33% have reduced travel to save money ... 16% of companies say they're shifting their sales focus to trade shows from basic sales calls.

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To see a sampling of the current job openings and to contact The Creative Network, click on the "Jobs" button in the left hand column.

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A. C. Moore (ACMR). Last*: 29.88 ... Change**: -0.12
Ames (AMES). Last*: 0.12 ... Change**: -0.14
Hancock Fabrics (HKF). Last*: 14.45 ... Change**: +0.37
Jo-Ann Stores (JAS.A) [a]. Last*: 9.65 ... Change**: +1.60
Michaels (MIKE). Last*: 31.03 ... Change**: -1.38
Rag Shops (RAGS). Last*: 3.65 ... Change**: +0.89
Wal-Mart (WMT). Last*: 56.35 ... Change**: -1.25
CLN Retail Index. Last*: 100.501 ... Change**: Unchanged
Dow Jones Index. Last*: 9,771.85 ... Change**: -4.8%

*January 18 ** from January 4 [a] voting share Note: Prices are exclusive of dividends

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1. Paid subscribers are invited to have their website evaluated by Lynn Carlisle of Carlisle Communications. She'll check the site and provide a confidential assessment and suggestions for improvement. Just email mike@clnonline.com or ljc@carlislecommunications.com.
2. If you want a hard-copy of this issue, click on "Printer Friendly version".
3. If your company is a paid subscriber, everyone in the main office is welcome to register, free.
4. If you want to recommend CLN to a friend, use the "Tell Your Friends" box on the home page.
5. Creative Leisure News is published on the first and third Mondays of each month. Your next issue will be Monday, February 4th.

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