New Bedford’s Newsbreak Store Closing After 17 Years
For years, I just called it the magazine store on the bridge, but the New Bedford shop's formal name is Newsbreak. I found that out when I heard the news that the store was closing this Saturday.
"Every week, there are at least two or three magazine titles we carry that either cease publication or have gone digital, and there's no new titles to replace them," lamented Jim Stanton, owner of Newsbreak on Pope's Island for the last 17 years. "Additionally, our magazines are generally read by an older population, and as they pass away, there aren't new magazine readers to fill their shoes."
In recent years, the magazine business has taken a massive hit from the rapid growth of mobile technology and social media.
"Between digital changing the way readers access news, and fewer and fewer older customers, I decided it was time to focus on our Swansea store that's been established for 35 years in a larger, busier plaza," Stanton said. "But looking back, I really loved this bridge location. From day one, we were welcomed and embraced by a very loyal base, who we'll miss a lot."
Employee Cheryl Lepore held back her tears describing her sorrow.
"I'm saddened to say goodbye to customers I gotten to know over the years. When they come in, they tell me what's going on in their families, and they've become more than just customers, if you know what I mean," she said.
Stanton recalled the best days were when the Boston Red Sox won the 2004 World Series.
"Oh, my goodness, the lines were endless. We sold over 10,000 newspapers and over 2,000 Sports Illustrated commemorative publications and other special editions. It was the greatest time for the store," he said. "Unfortunately, people aren't reading actual newspapers today. Today, we're lucky if we sell 20 papers total per day, and when you make a dime a paper, well, it's time to concentrate on the other location that's doing well."
"I have no regrets whatsoever," Stanton said. "One of the best things I ever did was move the store from Middletown, Rhode Island to Pope's Island. We never once had a problem here with customers. I'll be leaving a lot of personal recollections that made everything so worthwhile."
"I know it sounds cliche-ish," Lepore said. "But thanks for all the memories."
Newsbreak's last day will be Saturday, February 26.