SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – On Thursday, it was hard to find a parking spot and the lines were long for people heading to IPA Educational Supply in Springfield.

After 47 years, the doors will soon be closing. Owner, Amy Greene, said she and her husband received an offer they couldn’t pass up and decided it was the right time to sell the building. 

“With the changes from the pandemic with retail and just personal lives, we just decided it was time to close.”

 It doesn’t come without a huge reaction from teachers and parents across the Ozarks. As a closing sale started on Thursday, people flocked to the stores to get supplies for the last time.

“To get a deal,” said Angel Ambrosius, who teaches in Carthage. “We’re teachers, you know, we have budgets. This looks like Black Friday for teachers.” 

Teachers looking to stock their classrooms said this is one of the last school supply stores around. Many said they have been coming here for years.

“We like physically going to a store and trying things out,” said Kelly Dunn, a teacher in Willard.

Greene said the huge reaction has been heartwarming.

“To know that what a difference it made in the community,” said Greene. “How much we loved them. How much they also love us back. It’s very special to see all these people come out and wait in line.” 

The owners said they expect the last day to be around mid-August. They said they aren’t sure what’s next for them or for the building.