Event company calls it quits, ends with a huge garage sale
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - After 35 years in business, Anchorage events company Art Services North is shutting its doors. Owner Darl Schaaff said COVID-19 forced his hand after public gatherings were canceled last March and left him with zero income.
“March 12 the city announced that we were shutting down all public events,” said Schaaff. “Within 72 hours every major contract that we had for the second quarter was canceled.”
As a result, Schaaff said, he’s also laid off all six of his full-time employees.
“That was a huge loss, and people who had worked here for 25 years were laid off. We all agreed that’s what had to happen, but that’s pretty sad, it’s hard.
ASN has been a part of the Anchorage entertainment scene for decades, specializing in big events, sometimes as many as 100 a year, according to Schaaff. Everything from the annual Fourth of July celebration on the Park Strip to Anchorage’s 100th birthday celebration, with balls, galas and charity auctions in between.
On Friday, props and decorations from those events were put out for a giant garage sale outside the ASN warehouse. One man walked away with several plastic Buddha statues and a set of pink flamingos, a woman scored with dozens of bejeweled serving pieces she planned to use at her upcoming wedding.
Schaaff said watching it all go was bittersweet.
“Everything is a memory, what can I tell you?” he said.
Schaaff said letting go is also the start of a new beginning for him. He plans to move to Cleveland, Ohio, where he owns a home, and open a private museum to house his extensive collection of art.
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