Jeff Burkle
Stephen Gross/The Anniston Star

Jeff Burkle is the operations director for Replays, a gameware and movie retailer with 10 locations, including Anniston. On Saturday beginning at 10 a.m., the local Replays is hosting its second annual block party, featuring vendors, games, raffles and a food truck. Replays is located at 111 S. Quintard Ave. in Anniston.

What is your educational background?

I graduated from the University of Memphis in 2000, majoring in business management and marketing.

Why did business management and marketing appeal to you?

I enjoy working with other people, and coaching and leading people. I enjoy getting the best out of people. I have always been intrigued by the idea of small business. You can really see when you are working in a small business environment — how the smallest decision can make a big impact right away. Sometimes when you are with a corporation, you do not always see that. I think it is easier to apply your education with small business, and you see results more quickly.

How did you become involved with Replays?

Shortly after graduating, I moved to Alabama to start opening Replays stores, and I have been with Replays for 17 years.  

What is Replays?

Replays is a retail store, and we buy, sell and trade video games, gaming hardware, game accessories and DVDs. We sell everything from new release DVDs to older classic movies. As far as games go, we have a wide variety of games. We have games from the old 1980s 8-bit Nintendo to the Super Nintendo to PlayStation 2 to Xbox 360 to the newer stuff like Xbox One and PlayStation 4. We also have some handheld gaming with Gameboy and Nintendo DS. Most of our inventory is acquired by buying it from the customer, or when they trade in for another item in the store.

What is your preferred gaming system?

When I first took over at Replays, I was really into PlayStation and Nintendo 64. I am really showing my age now (laughter). When I took over at Replays, we were primarily selling CDs, and that really appealed to me because I really enjoyed music also. Obviously now with streaming music, the market is not there for that like it was.

Where are Replays stores located?

We have 10 locations now. We are all throughout Alabama, and we have a couple of franchise stores in Ohio.

Take us through a regular workday for you.

A lot of my regular workdays involve traveling to one of the stores. While I am at a store, I could be doing anything from interviewing job candidates to meeting with store employees about performance to developing, designing or redesigning a store layout to handling advertising and promotions — a lot of everything that goes with a small business.

What sets Replays apart from similar stores?

We feel we have a wider selection of games. We are a one-stop place where you can bring in old games and trade them for movies, or trade movies in for games. Traditionally, there are not a lot of stores that do that. We also offer extremely low pricing.

Tell us about Replays’ second annual block party.

We did our first block party last year, and we had a great response from it. It was an idea that we had been kicking around, and our employees thought it would be a really fun event for our community. People were genuinely excited about it. It was a big success, so we want to build upon that this year.

What vendors and activities will be at the block party?

We will have food available from the Thistle Cafe food truck, which specializes in Scottish food. We will have vendor tables set up from The Design Vine, Elizabeth Howell Furniture Restoration, JC Morgan Art Gallery, Kimchi Korner Crafts, Mister Bill’s Pickles and Siobhan Rhinehart’s Art and Collectibles. We will have some live music and in-store promotions. We will offer a voucher for savings on a future purchase. We are raffling off three pretty great items: an Xbox One system, a giftcard to Replays and a RetroN HD, which is a system that plays old Nintendo cartridges in HD. Raffle tickets are $1-$3, depending on which item. You can buy your raffle tickets anytime from now until right before we draw the winners on Saturday night.

Faith Dorn is a freelance writer in Anniston. Contact her at faith.h.dorn@gmail.com.