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Officials with the Saranac Lake Community Store are cautiously optimistic that a community-owned retail store will open for business at the beginning of next summer.
Melinda Little is the interim president of the Community Store’s board of directors.
“Having successfully completed a $5,000 matching challenge in less than a month, the Community Store is now only $37,800 away from reaching its objective of $500,000 in initial equity capital,” she said in a prepared statement.
“We will continue to push toward our goal over the coming weeks and are planning, among other things, a holiday open house for the weekend of Dec. 4 for those who want to purchase shares as holiday gifts for their loved ones,” she added.
Little told WNBZ that the board of directors hopes to finish fundraising by the end of December. “In a perfect world, it would be by the third week of December – and I’m cautiously optimistic about that – but I actually think, more realistically, more like January and February with the idea of opening the store by the early part of the summer,” she said.
Up to this point, store organizers have been hesitant to discuss possible locations for the retail outfit. But this week, board member Alan Brown tagged 94 Main Street – formerly Corvo’s Restaurant – as a hopeful location.
Brown says that with approximately 5,000 square feet, the building is ideally suited both in size and location, “We are extremely excited that this opportunity has opened up and are going to do everything we can to reach our goal as quickly as possible so that we can sign a lease and make this dream a reality,” he said.
Little notes that the store’s location is dependent on available real estate – when the store reaches its capital goal. “Some locations that we’ve talked about over the years have actually been leased to other companies, which is great, because the more spaces filled, the better for Saranac Lake,” she said.
The former Corvo’s Restaurant just went on the market, after being purchased by Greg Moore, owner of Bear Essentials.
Little says Moore approached Community Store organizers about leasing the space.
“It’s the perfect space, square footage wise,” she said. “We’re very excited about being there, given the location – you couldn’t be more perfectly placed, it’s right in the heart of downtown. We’re in conversations with Greg, and a lot will depend on everything falling into place on our end. He can’t wait forever for us to reach our goal; so we’re going to push, push, push to reach our goal as soon as possible.”
Board members also announced this week they will begin accepting resumes for key positions at the store.
“We’re close,” Little said. “So now is the time to start talking about job openings.”
The store is currently seeking applications for manager and assistant manager.