Monthly Archives: August 2010

This is a an Amazing Tribute to the Body of Work by Buzz Price – He Passed Away August 15

Goodbye Buzz!

I have been trying to think of stories about Buzz that can be told in mixed company and in front of more than four people, but I can’t think of any.  He often made me laugh until my cheeks hurt and at times, made me cry, although there was no crying at work.

He hired me fresh out of Berkeley at a time when there were few professional women in the industry.   He was my mentor, a champion, a taskmaster, a perfectionist, a father, a brilliant, lovable and charismatic man.  His joie de vivre was infectious and you couldn’t help standing taller because of him.  His encouragement made me a professional and his departure leaves a big gap in the world.  Buzz goodbye, I love you and I will miss you.

Goodbye from Sharon Dalrymple

Where to begin?  I worked for Buzz longer than anyone else, dating back to 1967 at ERA, moving later to HPC, and continuing through his retirement in 2000.  Those 33 years were an adventure like no other.  Our professional travels took us all across this country and to foreign locales as disparate as Cairo and Melbourne.  Together, we gingerly walked the land-mined beaches of the Red Sea under military escort, got temporarily stranded in the north woods of Minnesota on a frigid winter night when our rental car broke down, and spent eight hours staked out in the crowded, grimy baggage claim at Mexico City International waiting for our misrouted luggage to show up.  And those were the fun times (just kidding!).

Demanding, cantankerous, bawdy, cagey, witty, genial, smart as a whip, lovable–Buzz was all of those things and more.  Most of all, he was a gold-standard mentor and, ultimately, a very dear friend.  When we returned from a business trip and parted company at the airport, our traditional farewell was, “Vaya con Dios.”  So I say this one last time with heavy heart, “Vaya con Dios, amigo.”  And by the way, Buzz, you still owe me a double martini for sweet-talking the airport cops in Jacksonville into letting me park in the red zone long enough to deliver the wallet you accidentally left in your hotel room.  Stoli, very cold, two olives.

Shari Dalrymple

Former Senior VP, HPC

A SUCCESS OUT OF THE MISCHEGAS- AREA 51- OUT OF THIS WORLD!

I am always thrilled when one of my projects opens!  Retail/entertainment centers frequently require right-sizing for the market and/or for the level of demand.  Clients aren’t always happy to hear the results of the research when they hire us for a project and I often have the unenviable job of revealing how to scale centers for the real world. In the past 24 months, much of our work has been for centers that have large amounts of vacant space; clients want to know how to fill these spaces with well-performing tenants.  These days, fixes are neither easy nor quick and most projects require major reinvestment, even to attract a new tenant, or for those brave developer/owners, to create a new user.

So it is my great pleasure to share an inspiring success story.  Four months ago in March, I was called in to consult on a project in Roswell, Georgia. You heard it right, Roswell, like the notorious sci-fi location in New Mexico, where the UFO incident allegedly occurred. You remember, the recovery (wink wink) of extra-terrestrial debris and alien corpses from an object which crashed in July 1947. Since the late 1970s the incident has been the subject of intense controversy and theories as to the true nature of the objects.  Pop culture at its best with movie themes, video games, stories and internet reports thriving on this highly-thematic incident.

My client in Roswell bought a shopping center in a great location in Roswell with wonderful potential.  The site offers terrific discount retailers on a top level, with an underneath level offering a vacated/closed/bankrupt family entertainment center.  Once a thriving 10-screen Cinema, with an attached indoor family entertainment center, and an outdoor 36-hole, two course miniature golf attraction.  The retail portion of the center was doing well, while the cinema and family entertainment center closed in April 2009.

What to do?  The Client Group, Mimms Enterprises, owns many retail centers in Roswell and is a good corporate citizen and champion of family values.  They wanted to incorporate these values into the new center.  Three talented and motivated executives were chosen to spearhead the project:  Lonnie Mimms, Micheal Pardue and Wendy Floyd.  These individuals share an appreciation for technology, games, sci-fi movies, the showmanship of Walt Disney and P.T. Barnum and a passion for Roswell.

The result, Phase One of Area 51, which opened in record time on July 31 as a 10-screen, state-of-the-art cinema (The Aurora Cineplex) and a 36-hole golf course (The Fringe.)   A record 3,000 attended the opening weekend.

Phase II will include a Café and a number of party rooms, which are always in demand!  Phase three will include a family restaurant, comedy club and an activity/game floor.

Kudos to Mimms for opening a new attraction in this difficult time and kudos for a successful launch!