Another One Bites The Dust?

By on 4 November, 2010 in Carole King, City Living, Municipal business with 7 Comments

Life in Midtown Montgomery has become less stable as we watch several long-time locally-owned business establishments close their doors, one by one. It’s sad and scary. What’s ahead for us economically? As usual, maybe we’re several years behind the rest of the country. Could it be that we’re really just now starting to feel the downturns?

The Montgomery Brew Pub announced about three weeks ago that it would be closing its doors. The Brew Pub had been in a fabulous historic warehouse since 1995. They advertise that they are closed for business restructuring and hopefully will reopen in 2011. Besides great in-house brewed beer, they were the place to go to hear new local bands. I particularly liked the Brew Pub’s root beer in the summer and their cider this time of year when the temperatures start to drop.

Montgomery Seed and Supply located at the State Farmers’ Market on Coliseum Boulevard was my one-stop-shop for seeds, plants, fertilizer and great advice. I heard of the closing several weeks ago when I went to pick up my winter supply of lettuce seed. The ladies at the sales counter were old school gardeners with bright green thumbs who were always full of wonderful gardening lore. On that last day, there was a quiet gloom hanging over the sales floor and the discounts on merchandise were starting the next week for the liquidation process.

Last but not least and definitely the one I used and will miss the most, Moody’s Hardware on McGehee Road. When I needed that certain size of nail for a project or that fancy chandelier light bulb, the nice guys at the front were always there to help me out. Nobody else in town even stocked my odd-sized furnace filters. On one occasion, I needed proper tubing for a heater and one of the fellows even came over and installed it for me. As of the first week in November they were closed for inventory and then will open for stock and fixture liquidation.

Local businesses have enriched our civic fabric for decades. Small merchants like these care about their community because they are part of their community. The taxes they pay provide services, like schools, police and parks, that they, their families and employees all actually use. Their purchases and profits tend to circulate within our community while strengthening the local economy — rather than flowing to distant suppliers or corporate headquarters located elsewhere.

The demise of these faithful local businesses is dismal and depressing but these trends are not necessarily our community’s destiny. A number of communities have taken the lead in fashioning practices and policies that favor diverse, humanly-scaled, locally-owned, autonomous businesses. I’m thinking maybe it’s time to change some rules.

Carole King (not the singer, just the hummer) enjoys midtown living from South Capitol Parkway in Capitol Heights where she has lived for 25+years. Carole has been the historic properties curator for the Landmarks Foundation that manages Old Alabama Town for 28 years and is passionate about neighborhoods, their architectural character, their people, and their preservation!

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There Are 7 Brilliant Comments

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  1. admin says:

    We’re also sad to see the Capitol Oyster Bar go. A casualty of the BP oil spill, COB was by far the best place in town to get your oyster fix. We wrote about it over at Lost in Montgomery some time ago, and we’ll miss its wonderful sketchiness and affordable cafeteria trays full of oysters.

  2. Gabbie says:

    Wow. That’s too bad about Moodys…sigh.

  3. Jay Croft says:

    It’s saddening, about Moody’s. Will their other branch, on Decatur St., also close?

    A few years ago a friend’s bed needed cross-bracing. I took her to Moody’s, explained the problem gave dimensions, and in a few minutes we had the cable, cross-buckles, screws–everything we needed. We agreed that we could not get that kind of service in Lowe’s or HD.

    I better hurry down there and get my furnace filters!

    • Carole king says:

      I think Moody’s on Decatur Street plans to stay around awhile!

      • Jay Croft says:

        A bit surprised, because the McGehee Rd. location is larger and in a better neighborhood. Are there any other independent, “real” hardware stores around here?

        I was in Lowe’s and HD yesterday, looking for some things Moody doesn’t carry. I left with a sick feeling.

  4. Tess Ware says:

    Capitol Oyster Bar’s demise may be being mourned too soon. Friends have said they have eaten there recently. I will call the restaurant directly and report back.

  5. Tess Ware says:

    Good news! Capitol Oyster Bar is STILL in business!!! Yippee!

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