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Archive for May, 2009

D&E Dodge terminated as Crysler cuts dealerships

Thursday, May 14th, 2009

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Bankrupt Chrysler Motors is putting nearly 800 of its own dealers out of business. The announcement hit like a bomb across the country and our area was not spared the fallout.

“Chrysler notified us by letter this morning that as of June 9, our Dodge franchise has been terminated,” said D&E Dodge General Manager Andy Craven.

Just like that, after 54 years as a Dodge dealer, D&E will be out of the Chrysler family.

Hanging in the balance are 40 employees and four million dollars in inventory.

Chrysler has long wanted to trim its dealer network and get its Chrysler, Jeep, and Dodge brands under one roof at local dealerships.

Why is Chrysler doing this now? Having declared bankruptcy allows them to bypass state franchise laws that would have protected D&E Dodge at any other time. However the National Auto Dealers Association argues that the timing couldn’t be worse.

NADA chairman John McEleney says he understands the realties. “By forcing the issue, it’s going to have some real negative consequences in many communities, where dealers are the biggest private employers and are involved the local communities supporting charities.”

As for D&E Dodge? They say they’ll make you a heck of a deal on a new Dodge until June 9th.

And then? “D&E Dodge will be in the used car business. We started way in 1947 and now we’re going to go back… in that we’re not selling and servicing new cars we’re probably going to have to make some layoffs,” Craven said.

And that, says Craven, is what will hurt the most.

We may have another bombshell tomorrow from General Motors, which is seeking to close some 1,200 dealerships. An NADA source said that’s a clear indication that GM intends to declare bankruptcy later this month.

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videoBankrupt Chrysler Motors is putting nearly 800 of its own dealers out of business. The announcement hit like a bomb across the country and our area was not spared the fallout.

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Associated poll

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Police, families gather to remember comrades, loved ones

Thursday, May 14th, 2009

On Thursday, Wilmington police remembered fallen officers from the past – including an officer who died after a training exercise three years ago – as well as the officer whose loss is still fresh on the minds of many.

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Overhaul project OK’d for sagging Topsal Beach Town Hall

Thursday, May 14th, 2009

Repairs will begin soon on Topsail Beach’s Town Hall, restoring overstressed beams and sagging walls and floors in a building employees had begun to describe as “falling down.”

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Realtors turn to online game show for marketing

Thursday, May 14th, 2009

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Selling a home can be tough these days, so local realtors are getting creative. One local company has come up with an online game show to promote homes in area communities.

“Is this a desperate attempt for us to create interest in our communities in this market? A little bit, it’s more about gaining awareness,” said Justin Ash of Buddy Blake Realty.

Do these realtors seem desperate? That’s for you to decide, but many would agree their idea is pretty creative.

Buddy Blake realtors like Justin Ash have biked, bounced, and belly flopped their way through weekly contests in an online game show. The contests take place at the communities they’re trying to sell, like The Willows in Leland.

The contests don’t necessarily have anything to do with selling houses, but getting people to vote on their favorite contestant does get people to log on to their website.

The ultimate goal is to get them to tour the homes they’ve got for sale. “We’re starting to see more traffic through the communities, so we, with the resounding ‘yes’ believe that this is working 100%”

Newhomesmania.com has gotten nearly 10,000 unique visitors in less than a month.

Ash says people who aren’t even looking to buy a home have come into the realty office just because they saw the contest.

And those people, could turn into potential clients. “This is a good way to get them thinking, maybe it is a good time to buy a house,” Ash said.

Buddy Blake said they are also getting publicity from realtors across the country. Some are criticizing them, saying they’re de-professionalizing the realty industry, while others are commending them for their creativity.

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videoSelling a home can be tough these days, so local realtors are getting creative. One local company has come up with an online game show to promote homes in area communities.

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Associated poll

More: continued here

Wilmington auditions scheduled for Miley Cyrus movie

Thursday, May 14th, 2009

Wilmington didn’t get the Miley Cyrus/Nicholas Sparks movie, “The Last Song,” which instead chose to film in Savannah, Ga. But a few lucky Wilmingtonians might still prosper from the film.

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