Rocket City Barns: Surviving, Thriving And Ready To Serve

By: Ali Elizabeth Turner

Rocket City Barns is in the process of celebrating their 12th year in Athens, and I shall always be grateful that they were some of our first customers when we bought Athens Now in 2011, and they have stayed with us ever since. Owned by Marcy Hamilton and her husband, Dan, they are wanting the people of North Alabama to know that “things are better than ever.”

During the pandemic, Rocket City Barns stayed visible and marketed through graphic ads in our paper, and from time to time, would stop by to see if they wanted to take advantage of their complimentary article. The “COVID cave” that kept people at home made that seem like not the best idea, and as Daniel explains, “There were some dicey moments. We experienced supply chain issues along with staggering materials costs. But we kept pricing as low as we could, and are happy to announce that pricing has come down in the last 18 months. We have reduced prices 3 times because our material costs have come down.”

REDUCE PRICES??? Who DOES that? Marcy and Dan, that’s who. If you have read any of their other articles in this paper, you will remember that one of their values in life is to conduct business in such a way that they “can sleep well at night,” as Marcy says, and Rocket City Barns chose a marketing model where selling in volume would offset the effect of selling their inventory at discount prices.

Dan continued by saying, “Shopping around is more important than ever. In the last two years, we have seen a massive influx of barn outlets all over the state. Right here in Limestone County, my last count was 10. Online, there must be 500 buildings listed on the classified sites. It’s chaotic and can be overwhelming. We always welcome the competition; we feel it make us better. Consumers will find vastly different pricing on the same size and style building. In some cases, there is as much as a 30% difference. Our buildings are built right here in North Alabama, which affords us some savings that we pass along to our customers. These have been 20+ years of Alabama’s best-selling buildings, and we aren’t about to let off the gas. We encourage shopping around because of our confidence. Our pricing is fantastic, our warranties are comprehensive, and we just don’t get beat.”

There has been a question about a different “Rocket City” that is nearby that Dan wanted to clear up: “So, that’s caused a lot of confusion as they operate under a strikingly similar name. Just one word off. To be clear, they are not affiliated with us in any way. So how do you know you have the right place? If ‘Barns’ isn’t in the name, it’s not the same. Of course, customers can always text us at 256-221-7062 as well.

Dan went on to talk about some of the new things for spring at Rocket City Barns by saying, “We have added chicken coops and greenhouses to the line-up. They have the same quality construction that our customers have become accustomed to. We are also happy to announce that we have extended our maximum portable size to 16’x48’. The 48 footers are great for cabin and garage models.”

Marcy made me laugh when she told me about the Rocket City Barns “Miracle On 34th Street” policy. It is what they do if they can’t help someone find what will fill the bill, and she explained how it works. “In the movie Miracle On 34th Street, when Macy’s doesn’t have what the customer is looking for, Macy’s checks with Gimbels. That’s our policy. If we don’t offer what the customer is looking for, we will advise them where to look. In our 12 years, we have learned that there are some competing manufacturers out there that can be a good choice in some circumstances. There are also a few that we would avoid under any circumstance. For those who haven’t seen the movie, please do. It’s a classic and we love it,” she said.

Another new development about which Dan and Marcy are excited is the addition of their daughter Lorelei to the Rocket City Barns team. “Our daughter has joined the team! We are quite proud and excited about this. That’s three generations of our family serving the community,” Dan said.

Dan also mentioned that they have been working to improve their website, which is “We now have our inventory online, with pricing. We also have an online ordering process that we developed during the pandemic which works very well. We have some new models we are excited about as well. In addition to the chicken coops and greenhouses, we now have buildings with dormers, full side porches, and slant tops, to name a few. Our online presence is committed to transparency. We publish our pricing and quote custom builds quickly. There is no nonsense with us as we are confident that our value is unmatched.”

Dan finished by saying, “We have a new price structure on metal carports, RV covers, and garages. We are excited to offer these at MUCH better pricing now.”

Spring is just around the corner, and if getting a barn is part of your plan, you need to go visit Rocket City Barns—a vendor that has survived, is thriving, and, as always, is ready to serve.

By: Ali Elizabeth Turner