Store with 60-year history holds final wake to thank friends and customers.
Friends and family brought food and stories as they gathered to say a final goodbye to Newhall Hardware Saturday afternoon.
Store owner Vic Feany made it a point to speak to all the visitors, keeping a positive attitude even though you could see the store closure was weighing heavy on his shoulders.
A coffin decorated with “closed” signs and photographs of the last remaining staff were in the front of the store, where one of the cash registers used to ring up purchases. The eerily empty shelves held hundreds of pictures of past workers, friends and customers along with a myriad of certificates and plaques from vendors, politicians and other civic groups, a testament to the store’s contributions and support of valley nonprofit organizations.
One of the most interesting displays was a series of “redevelopment” plans from the 1950s, done by a studio artist used to creating set fronts. Each San Fernando Road (now Main Street) address had a different Western façade, seemingly to facilitate filmmakers and those shoppers looking for a Wild West business district.
“Vic had these in the attic,” Newhall Redevelopment Committee member Larry Bird commented. “Most of us had never seen them before.”
Deputy Joe Trejo, who works out of the Community Center substation around the corner from the store, stood out front reminiscing with customers as they passed through the doorways flanked by clusters of black balloons.
A funeral program was handed out, featuring a poem dedicated to the store and its customers:
“God bless this little hardware store, we loved its every nook and cranny.
We could pick up some pipe, some pliers and a pair of gloves,
As well as find the uncanny……”
Newhall Hardware isn’t disappearing from sight, as the back page of the program asked “in lieu of flowers, the family would like you to occasionally visit out website, we will be restarting it soon, with pictures, old and new, and updates on our family.”