After more than a year of dormancy, the vacant 8,750-square-foot retail space at Town and Country Plaza on Route 20 East will soon be occupied by a Sears Hometown Store.
Local property developer David Muraco recently struck a deal with Steve Seitz, general manager of Sears Hometown/ SR & Development Inc., who hopes to open the new location by June.
“The best thing that [a Sears Hometown Store] provides to a small community is competitive pricing. All the products are priced by Sears Corporate,” Seitz said. “We chose Cazenovia to be the first store we open based on the different demographics and the unique market that exists … We’re not setting up shop in a smaller community and raising prices. Customers can drive into a Sears store in Syracuse and pay the same amount. It’s a good feeling to be part of the growth that’s happening in Cazenovia.”
Unlike larger Sears department stores, the Cazenovia location will not sell clothing — the main bulk of the business is Kenmore appliances, lawn and garden equipment, tractors and Craftsman tools, in addition to bedding and housewares. Seitz will act as the area manager, and the store will be locally staffed and managed by Eric Towne.
Towne currently works as a manager of Sears in Batavia, and is in the process of moving to Cazenovia with his wife Alissa and children, Jadeyn, 9; Connor, 7; Bailey, 4; and one-year-old twins Ethan and Elijah – all of whom will become students of the Cazenovia Central School District.
“We feel that the community is going to be a perfect fit for Sears and our family,” Towne said. “We have driven out on a few occasions to look around the area and to get a feel for the people. Each time, we were glad to see how friendly everyone was … we noticed right away the strong sense of community. Not one person we spoke with had a negative comment regarding either the area or the school. Which, having so many children, is a major concern. We look forward to getting to meet everyone and to become a part of the Cazenovia community.”