For the last 14 years, Kirkland has laid claim to its own little piece of Christmas fame, calling itself a year-round home to thousands of Santas. But, as of Aug. 1, Santas (emphasis on the plural) gotta find a new summering ground.
Reasons to Believe, an iconic downtown shop at 92 Kirkland Ave. that sells thousands of one-of-a-kind, handmade Santa figurines, will close at the end of July, owner Dennis Brown said last week.
Brown, who can often be seen from the storefront window sitting at his workbench crafting a Santa or a reindeer, cited a problem generating business as the reason for the closure.
“There’s just a total lack of business downtown. I don’t know if it’s because we’ve been here awhile and the novelty has worn off,” he said. “I’m just leaving. I’m ready for a change.”
Brown, who notified friends and customers of the decision over the past week, said the plan is to work from home, focus solely on the online-sales aspect of his business and “spend more time with my kids.”
Brown’s presence won’t depart the downtown completely, however — he plans to make his Santa creations available through other downtown retailers.