Iconic downtown Bend clothing shop closing

Roberts on Wall owner: Tech hurts some retailers

Roberts on Wall: Icon's farewell

BEND, Ore. - Strolling through downtown Bend,  you'll find historical plaques on many buildings.

Though Roberts on Wall Street doesn't have a plaque, it's history in downtown Bend runs deep.

"Roberts goes back to 1977 -0, before that it was it was Standifords, same corporation that goes back to 1949, and before that it was Swartzen Newson going back to the 20s," co-owner Brett Mellon said Monday.

Mellon and his wife bought the store eight years ago.

"It is in our heart, you know -- we love downtown Bend," Mellon said.

Now the iconic clothing shop is closing after 37 years.

"The industry is changing, and you have to look forward. And either you can change or you can be changed -- it's your choice," Mellon said.

It seems change is inevitable on Wall Street.

"I've been here for five years, and I've seen one restaurant space go through three different restaurants in five years," said Ray Solley, executive director of the Tower Theatre.

"And it has been interesting to see how each different restaurant brands itself in that space and turns itself into a viable business," Solley said. "That will probably happen with the space at Roberts."

Many restaurants and theaters are thriving, but for some retailers, like Roberts, technology is getting in the way.

Online shopping is pushing out the mom-and-pop shops. But Mellon says cyberspace doesn't have to rule the retail world.

"Bend has a vibrant unique community, and one thing I would say to people is, if you want it to stay that way, get out and support your local retailers -- get out and support your local stores," Mellon said.

Roberts is having an invitation only sale on Wednesday. Then it will open to the public for a liquidation sale. It will stay open as long as needed to clear out the stock.

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