I couldn't believe it either, my favorite sporting goods store in Abilene is closing it's doors for good on May 14th, 2012. Store manager Ralph Zamarippa says "we've known for some time that Abilene was one of the stores that's been on the list of stores closing in the Big 5 chain, but we couldn't say anything". The San Angelo store will be closing as well according to a visiting manager from the Lubbock store Roy Rocha.

To assist with the clearance sale, managers from Lubbock and Midland are in Abilene to ensure a smooth store closing. Visiting Lubbock manager Roy Rocha said "the Big 5 chain is closing this store because it's one of the poorest performing stores in the company" and that all the merchandise that is not sold from both the Abilene and San Angelo stores will be moved to their new store in Thatcher Arizona. "We are not saying goodbye to Abilene forever, we could possibly come back to this market in the future. I just believe that our location made it difficult for people to get in and out of our parking lot, if this was a two-way street, I may have never had to come to Abilene." said Rocha.

On a sad note, all but two employees will be let go, so if you are looking for some good retail people, here is your chance to pick up some awesome folks that live, worship and have roots here in Abilene. "I have an incredible staff here and I hope that we can all find employment right away" said Ralph Zamarippa.

I shopped Big 5 Sporting Goods on a weekly basis, how about you, did you ever shop Big 5? Do you think that getting in and out of the parking lot was a hassle?