Coast Tradition Comes To A Close - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

01/14/05

Coast Tradition Comes To A Close

After capturing photographic memories for years and selling the equipment to do it yourself, Coast Camera is closing its doors.

"Today is the last day," said owner Rick Hoener.

Hoener says there are several reasons for his decision to close down the business his parents started back in 1979.

The most heartfelt reason- the recent death of his parents, original owners Edgar and Shirley Hoener.

The other reason - the popularity of digital cameras is booming, especially among Internet users.

The old ways of taking pictures are simply going out of style.

"Film sales has really gone down. Last year, a lot of people got digital cameras for Christmas and that took a big bite out of it, and I'm sure this year, with everybody got digital again, and maybe sold 3 or 4 rolls of film since Christmas, and mainly because they saw I was going out of business and it was half price," said Hoener.

Hoener never thought the products he sold would be considered old-fashioned.

"I didn't think I would ever see the day that digital would take over 35, but I myself own one now, and when you put the two pictures together, you cannot tell the difference," said Hoener.

He says it's going to be hard to close the door on this chapter of his and his family's lives, but he can find a little happiness out of this heartache.

"It will give me time to actually take a little time off. I haven't had a vacation since '89," said Hoener.

Even though Hoener is closing the retail side of his business, he will repair cameras as well as offer some of the same services from his home.

The telephone number will remain the same - 896-8837.

By Karla Redditte

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