Local First Arizona has more than 3,000 business members, and when it comes to Recreation & Sports’ members, one that stands out to me is C&S Sporting Goods. Living right off of 7th Street and being a HUGE sports fan, I have been so fortunate to be within walking distance of this sports heaven. Located a block south of Maryland and 7th street, C&S is a family-owned and operated business that carries used and new sporting goods and fitness equipment. They buy, sell, and trade equipment. The business opened in October of 2011. C&S isn’t your typical sporting goods store. I recently interviewed Chad Carpenter, co-founder, and owner. The business is named after himself and his wife, Sarah.
Mr. Carpenter told me that he’s been in this industry for over 20 years and that he ran a similar store in Oregon. Born and raised in Phoenix, Chad moved to Oregon when he was 19 but when he turned 30, he moved back to Phoenix, his home. He was ready to change jobs and was looking for something different. He and his wife started to collect equipment in their garage. In the meantime, they were looking for a good location for a store. Chad has a love for the sporting goods industry and enjoys the evolving nature of the business. He and his wife love working with families and especially those in need. The Carpenters started their business when the economy was really bad but were able to help people save money through great product and pricing. The business is able to change with the times and the economy. Their number one priority is to try and meet the needs of the customers.
Chad is fond of the neighborhood. He grew up in Central Phoenix, and when he was looking for a place for his business, he was glad to find a place near his family home. C&S brings in a variety of customers, but roughly 90% of the customers are families. However, they do get a lot of out-of-towners as well. According to Chad, customers tend to select this business over the competition mainly because of customer service. Customer service at C&S is like no other across the valley. You will be greeted with a warm smile when you first walk into the store. On top of that, with the knowledge and expertise that the staff has, you are sure to find what you need. Personally, when I once went into the store looking for a basketball, the staff was so warm and welcoming and helped pick out the right ball for me. Additionally, it’s a fun environment and there’s a variety of equipment with stellar prices. Mr. Carpenter told me he doesn’t do a lot of paid advertising. He said that when he first started the business, he signed up for all the free local advertising he could find, which has led to really high ratings of the store all over the internet. C&S also has a Facebook and twitter page, but a lot of advertising is done through word-of-mouth. C&S Sporting Goods sponsors many youth sports teams across the valley.
Over the last five years, inventory has “blown up” and C&S has expanded the store. C&S Sporting Goods has seven employees and Chad says he relies a lot on his employees and that it is the number one key to the business’ success. Mr. Carpenter also told me that the biggest issue for running the business is keeping up with the inventory. He said that “piles of inventory” keep coming in and that one time he and his wife spent nine hours on a Sunday just sorting through everything. Mr. Carpenter says that the busiest time of the year is around February and March because that’s the start of baseball and softball season. Being a big sports fan, Chad thinks it’s fun when 20 kids will come in at a time looking for equipment.
Overall, C&S Sporting Goods is an amazing store and provides a satisfying customer experience. The owners and employees are super friendly and will take care of you like family. Their commitment and dedication stand out like nothing else. So, the next time you're in need of a baseball glove or any other sports equipment, try C&S Sporting Goods where you're not only supporting great people and a great business, but keeping your dollars here at home too.
C&S Sporting Goods:
6311 N 7th Street
Phoenix, AZ 85014