MADISON, Wis. (WMTV)-- Wisconsin Craft Market at Westgate Mall will be closing for good, the owner says.
According to the market in a Facebook post Monday, the business failed to renew their lease with the mall, on Madison’s west side.
As of Monday, Wisconsin Craft Market is one of the last businesses at Westgate Mall. The mall has struggled for years to retain leasers amid rising online shopping.
The market says they will be open until the end of April.
Wisconsin Craft Market specializes in art supplies, beading, clothing, knitting and crochet and other items, according to its website.
According to the owner, Paul, on Facebook:
” Although my staff was unaware until just a couple of days ago, I've known about this for a little over a month and was trying to decide if there was a chance we could move rather than close, even starting negotiations on a new spot for a smaller version of Wisconsin Craft Market.
However, after much agonizing and looking at the recent trends in brick and mortar retail, I arrived at the conclusion that with my next birthday being my 69th, it simply wasn't a good idea to sign my name to a long term lease.”
The owner says sometime in March the market will begin a final sale.
He blamed online shopping for the decline in brick and mortar businesses, including his own:
”I know there's no turning back on the online shopping trend, but independent businesses are struggling. We're particularly lucky that Madison seems, more than other places, to be aware that shopping local is important and makes the effort to support these businesses who give back to the community.
We've been proud to have helped countless local organizations over the years. Please continue to support your local businesses who do this exact same thing - we're all in this together.”