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a little bit of everything at full sun gifts
by Audrey Hanes, photography by Amy Long

Last April, Full Sun Gifts, a favorite local gift store, transitioned to new management. Since then, the owners, Dr. Lowery and Teresa Beck and their three sons, have been working to mix their customers’ longtime favorites with new, unique gift items with a local focus.

“All my boys are older, and I needed something to do; I don’t sit at home well,” said Teresa, who handles many of the day-to-day details around the store. “I did handle some social media and marketing for my husband’s clinic (Apache Drive Children’s Clinic) and got involved in local politics – a local councilman with his recent race. I learned I had a real affinity for all that was involved with that; it interested me.
“I’ve shopped at Full Sun for years, first when Diane Lawrence had it, then Lynn (Chrisman). It has always been my go-to place for gifts and other fun items. When we discovered that Lynn was selling it, we made it happen.”

Overall, Teresa says the Beck family’s transition to ownership went very smoothly.

“We are all part-owners, so we all have a vested interest in making this successful,” she said. “Our clinic is small, too, so it’s something we are used to because it has always been family run.

“David helps at market and merchandising, Stephen helps with IT work and Chris does delivery and inventory. They all help mom on the side because they have other jobs.”

Customers will be relieved that the store will continue to carry many of their favorite gift items, such as Tyler Candles and Happy Everything, while also adding a little something new for everyone from babies to men.

“We like picking up unusual things,” said Teresa. “… We try to pick up local, semi-local and items from the South first – those really seem to attract people. We like unique items you can’t find anywhere else.”

Some of those items include a sock and clothing line out of Little Rock called Arkansocks, candles like Park Hill Collection out of Little Rock and Lux Candles out of Des Arc, J and M food out of Arkansas, Lambrecht Gourmet Toffee out of Heber Springs and soaps from Jonesboro’s Peachy and Blue. Cosgrove & Lewis Handmade Luxury Soaps out of Memphis is even making a red, white and black signature soap exclusively for Full Sun Gifts.

“We had to renegotiate with all the vendors when we bought the store,” said Teresa. “We started with our basics and went from there; the more local, the better.”

The new owners are also revamping and revitalizing Full Sun Gifts’ bridal registry, allowing couples to register for unique items such as travel luggage and local goods that they might not find elsewhere.

“We have some higher end items for bridal registries that are a bit unusual and unique,” said Teresa. “We carry Beatrix Ball, a new line called Susan Gordon Pottery and we’ll have an earthy pottery line starting in August called Tab Boren. These are all good for gifts or for bridal registries, from platters to ornaments. We are just trying to appeal to a broad range of customers.”

Teresa says the store is also focusing on advertising its existing service of free delivery, as well as adding pre-packaged gifts baskets on down the line.

“Many local businesses bring us their marketing and promotional materials, and we fill it up and deliver it to them to be waiting for guests at their hotel when they arrive to Jonesboro,” said Teresa.

Full Sun Gifts now offers personalization, as well. The store currently offers stick-on vinyl, which is free on full price items purchased at the store. The owners say they are adding the heat-pressed soon, and within the next six months, embroidered monogramming.

“Business slacked off a bit in the transition of ownership, but it has really picked back up again, and the community and our customers have really been supporting us,” said Teresa. “We will be doing Christmas big and pretty and fun like we always have. If you haven’t been by in a while, come see us.”

For more information about Full Sun Gifts, located at 606 Southwest Drive, find the store on Facebook, visit fullsungifts.com or call (870) 972-8480.