One Halloween store's 'ghoulish plan' to compete with seasonal stores


by Gene Kang

Posted on October 8, 2012 at 6:23 PM

Updated Monday, Oct 8 at 8:09 PM

(WHAS11) -- Caufield's Novelty has been in business for more than 90 years. Every year, they face more and more competition from "pop-up stores" that lease in vacant buildings Caufield's has a ghoulish plan to compete this Halloween and it has to do with location.

Halloween is $6 billion industry and everyone is "dying" to make a profit. Caufield's Novelty Store in Downtown Louisville at 10th and Main Street.

This three story building is open year-round. Family-owned since the 1920s, Caufields' internet sales span the country.

"You've got one, two, three, four, five different options," said Tracy Caufield as she pointed at costumes.

Caufield prides herself on the store's wide variety and customer service. She says Halloween generates 40 percent of their annual sales.

John Rosenberger was shopping with his grandson. It has been a tradition since he was in his teens.

"You can't beat or go anywhere else and find everything in one spot. You don't have to trail all over town," said Rosenberger.       

Some of the hottest costumes this year are superheroes like Wonder Woman, Supergirl and Batgirl. They also have a latex Spiderman costume. Different options range from $60 to $350.

If you are feeling political, you can find President Obama and Romney masks on the trail. For kids, they have a Sweet Raccoon piece which is flying off the shelves. Princess costumes are also always a top seller.

But competition is fierce and more seasonal stores are popping up like "Halloween Express" next to the St. Matthews Post Office and "Halloween City" on Shelbyville Road.  

"It seems to pull everybody in and everybody is really into decor this year. That's a really big thing. A lot of customers come in for the fog machines. It's been a really hot trend for us this year," said store manager, Shaun Thomas at Halloween City.

It forced locally-owned stores like Caufield's to open a satellite location on Hurstbourne Parkway.

"The temporary stores come around and steal their thunder and they're gone and the independent costume shops are going out of business," said Caufield.

Caufield's Novelty says many pop-up seasonal stores are operated by out-of-state companies that take profits elsewhere.

The Caufield's Halloween Parade is October 12 at 7:00 p.m. They donate money to local charities like the Home of the Innocence.