The list of chain stores closing continues to grow.  Most recently Toys R Us, Sears, JC Penny, Bed, Bath & Beyond and several more I can't seem to remember.  The reasons for most of these closings are understandable.  Competition from online shopping platforms like Amazon, antiquated product lines and the inability to adapt to changing times and customer preferences just to name a few.  However, the reason Party City stores are closing is somewhat baffling and unheard of.

In an article on wlns.com, Party City CEO James Harrison said they want to support their most prosperous businesses across the country by closing a few stores to "optimize" the company.  And then he mentioned one of the main reasons the company has fallen on somewhat hard times the last few years: The helium shortage.  That's right.  The helium shortage!  I didn't even know there was a helium shortage and until I thought about it in relation to a "party" store, didn't realize how important it is for, ya know, balloons.

Party City has more than 870 stores in the U.S. and Canada with about 20 in Michigan but no word yet on which stores will be closing.  BTW, how do we get helium???