Saturday was a busy day for store owners in the Seitz Building. Feb. 1 is the day they must be completely out. Why? The building is undergoing a complete renovation -- condominiums on the upper floors; a garage underneath; stores updated. The target date for re-opening is May.
At the Hitching Post-, a card, gift and little-bit-of-everything shop -- on the corner of Jordan and Genesee, owner Sherry Horrocks was sweeping up as family and friends helped and hauled merchandise out to a waiting van. She's been there for 10 years; the shop for 50.
"Ten years, seven days a week - all of a sudden it feels strange," Horrocks said. "I won't know what to do with myself." However, some of the store's contents will be for sale at her husband, Phil's store in Auburn: Servo's News.
Horrocks said for sure she will be back. "We're closed temporarily; we're coming back as soon as they're done with construction. We hope to return to the same location."
The owner of Infused! at 5 Jordan Street, Elaine Slater-Kogler, is also undaunted. Sunday was her shop's last day. "We'll pack up and wait to re-open; we'll see you in the spring. That's the plan," she said. "In the meantime we're selling online (www.infused.com)."
Inventory ranges from crockery to cookbooks to coffee to chips. "We have everything for the foodie," Slater said. "Anyone who watches the Food Network -- that's our customer."
She is looking at the building's renovation as good for future business. "We're looking forward to a new space. Out experience with the developer has been very positive," Slater said.
Elegant Needles, next door at 7 Jordan Street, was jammed with customers early Saturday morning, its last day of operation. Bob Chaffee, husband of owner Elaine Chaffee, was presiding. "We're planning on coming back," he said. "It's a matter of conferring with the landlord as to a lease or numbers."