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Showing posts with label buying for less. Show all posts
Showing posts with label buying for less. Show all posts

Monday, February 20, 2017

Small Shops help Fill Shopping Void in Cohoes

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'here's to your health!' Although at one time, there were many shopping options in Cohoes, in the last fifteen years or so, that no longer is the case. Known for being an ol' mill town, Cohoes boasted of it's men's and ladies clothing stores, bakery, shoe store, diner, movie theater, milliners, shoe repair, toy, children's clothing, department,stationery, stores, mini outlet mall,etc. With the birth of Walmarts and Sam's clubs, the landscapes of many a small town across the United States likeCohoes, changed drastically. Mom and Pop shops that had weathered many a storm through the years, fell in the face of outscourcing, corporate downsizing,alternate transportaion,vacation options and global warming. Now urban blight, empty strip malls and abandoned, ill maintained store fronts are the norm. What once was the train station, has been replaced by the current OTB. Former churches, once frequented by the faithful, are now either empty or being used for some other purpose, due to decline of parishioners. The library site is what used to be a church. The Venue is an art gallery space that was also a church. The bakery, which was a hub of activity where people went to catch up with the goings on as well as for a loaf of bread, has since burned to the ground in 2006. The family who ran it, didn't rebuild. All along Main street, one can find condemned, foreclosed on properties. Absentee landlords are the norm. Sidewalks are left covered in snow, ice with no salt or sand put down. As I walk my dog,I have fallen twice as slippery and dangerous. Is just a lawsuit waiting to happen as cheaper to maintain than pay in court. Landlords get away with it as is business as usual despite the promises of the new,ineffective mayor. Old Victorian burned, damaged home on Bridge street, stands teetering on the hill as one enters Cohoes. An eye sore if there ever was one. Empty store fronts line Remsen still despite alleged urban renewal claims. Many store owners have little incentive to invest in this troubled,dying town. Young people tend to leave once grown rather than reinvest in their community. The hardware store closed last year as owner retired. Noone bought the space so we have no hardware store now. Yes one can get a few screws and nails at Family Dollar but, selection is minimal. Table and Chairs furniture just went out a few months back. 30% poverty rate is a staggering statistic here well above the national average. Area is being called Appalachia now. There are some places to eat here though such as House of Pizza, Subway, Burger King and Dunkin Donuts. The Falls are a tourist attraction eventhough there is nowhere for visitors to stay what with the hotel being closed. In it's defunct space are plans for a high income high rise for the chosen few. The Mercantile next door to there is a gift shop with some clothes, hand made soap, cremes but most of it's items are pricey, from China and unecessary. Marras', drug store, that has more than a pharmacy has been around for ages. Family also owns the funeral home. Town has a florist, rug store, hair salon, jeweler, bike and antique shop too. Music Hall has live entertainment from time to time but few I know go as can't pay. Churches hold bazaars and sell items a couple of times a year. One can get books to read, DVDs to rent at the library. Vendors line the street selling their wares fall and winter too. Those willing to drive, go to malls in neighboring towns to shop or online as not much here anymore. History of town dates back to the revolution. Mastedon bones were found during the building of the dam even. Despite it's image being tarnished,Cohoes has held on. When walking down it's cobble stone streets, one can't help but fall in love with it's many brown stone beautiful buildings in the historic district. There remains still a charm here, if you take the time to look. Thankfully there are still some shops here that have listened to the consumer and have attempted to fill their needs. They have considered the demographic here, which consists downtown of a large population of people on the government rolls. Based on buying trends they have opted to sell low cost,new or gently used product, they can afford to buy. This increases local commerce and creates a vibrant, happier community, where all can buy and not just those with good jobs and money. Stores like Family Dollar, CVS and Rite Aid anchor the town, along the Mohawk and Hudson rivers, along the Erie canal. They supply cheap house hold items, clothing, shoes, food and of course medicine. They sell over the counter drugs too. The Peltier House has been restored to it's former glory, off White St amist smaller, newer homes. One can buy dollar used DVDs at A Little of This An That on Main and Columbia streets. At Faye's Fabulous Finds, one can find nice used furniture, clothes, shoes and hand bags, lots of bags! Barry's thrift on Remsen has collectibles and the odd item you didn't know you needed, for less like a cell phone speaker, requiring no wires! The Community Closet, also on Remsen, has used clothing for a steal. It is run by the local church and items are sold by donation. In fact it is not unheard of to get a coat for a buck there! Mimi's Elegance Boutique is the only real ladies clothing store in town. It has some nice new dresses,including designer for a very good price. One can get a marked down from $140. Calvin Klein dress for just $35! The dress sizes range fro 1 and up. When I was there I found some 16's but no 18's yet which is what I wear. In the back of the shop, is a hair salon. They split the space which saves them money. I saw handmade jewelry too. With the dresses were a few hand bags. In a city with so many social problems, it is refreshing to see some shops and their owners changing with the times so they don't become dinosaurs like their previous neighbors. Many are reselling used product for reuse, rather than using new resources, which is called upcycling. This cuts down on what ends up at exhausted landfills, so it helps the environment too, besides saving seller, buyer money. Is a win, win situation as seller makes money off what would end up being thrown away, other wise. Most people need to watch what they spend now a days so here they save money. This is why thrift stores have become so popular, as well as yard sales and flea markets. People are looking to save or get a bargain. Cohoes, now has become a part of this new trend, embracing the old. All I can say is , way to go guys! thanks for offering us some affordable, yet nice shopping in Cohoes once again!

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