After six months of operation in the strip mall on Hwy 16 S., Trump Store owner Wyatt Forster is optimistic about the business, seeing customers from many different parts of the country and world come in to shop.
Forster showed the Bulletin the store’s guest book with visitors from Australia, Austria, Canada and all over the United States, noting 80 percent of his patrons are visitors to Bandera.
During the Bulletin’s interview, a Kansas couple vacationing in Port Aransas wandered in specifically to visit The Trump Store and look for unique conservative items.
Many make the trip from San Antonio to visit the store, according to Forster.
Others are not so supportive.
Forster tells the story of an older woman who was looking in the store window. When he stepped up to welcome her in, she told him, “Oh no, this is horrible.”
Overall, Forster relays that his family’s welcome to Bandera has been very positive.
Forster is originally from Arkansas but was a longtime Arizona resident. Originally a roofer for 25 years, Forster decided to go a different route when choosing a second career.
He did a lot of research and found that he could go into a retail business with Trump products and make a profit. He opened his first store in Tombstone, Arizona. The Bandera Trump Store is his second store.
Wanting to promote he and his wife’s conservative Republican values, Forster and his wife Carrie moved to Bandera to be close to relatives in Medina. Forster wanted a retail business that he could get behind.
The store contains all manner of things Trump as well as generic conservative items. There are t-shirts, trucker caps, bumper stickers, cards, signs, flags, mugs, glassware and jewelry. The Trump Store has any manner of gift items for anyone who supports conservative causes.
Forster says that he tries to sell products exclusively made in America, but that that is not always possible.
“I stock everything I can get that is American made,” he states.
He references his nylon flags, which are made out of the country. No manufacturer in the U.S. produces low-cost nylon flags, he remarks.
The American-made cotton flags that are available are priced out of the budget of ordinary buyers, so he stocks flags he can sell for a reasonable price.
His trucker caps are American-made, and some of his shirts are even made in Lockhart, Texas.
Forster says he does his research and lets that drive his business decisions.
He also says he loves to study and research on the internet. He spent a good deal of time researching the retail industry before he decided to open his first Trump Store.
Eventually, he remarks, the store will just carry conservative items as time moves forward, although every time Trump is in the news, Forster’s sales skyrocket.
A Trump mugshot shirt was a particularly popular item.
Local conservative causes are Forster and his wife Carrie’s passion, but he does want to get more involved in the community. He wants to support community organizations like the Silver Sage and get involved in the town.
The Trump Store in Bandera is located in the strip mall on State Highway 16 just as you enter the city limits at 670 State Hwy 16 South.
They are open Tuesday through Sunday from 9:30 a.m. until 6 p.m.