January 5, 2013
Making way for something new means getting rid of something old. That's what's happening with the longtime Lloyd's Hallmark store in the Barracks Road Shopping Center.
A family business and a Charlottesville treasure is closing in two weeks so PeachMac, an Apple retailer, can move in. They're moving into the spot John Lloyd has been in for 45 years.
"I opened with my father and I'm closing it with my three sons. And I am very fortunate to have had those many years, successful business in Charlottesville. I hope my customers will continue to follow us and support the local businesses in Charlottesville because that's very important. We are Charlottesville," said Lloyd, owner of three local Hallmark locations.
The Hallmark card shop was part of the original Barracks Road Shopping Center when it was the only shopping center in Charlottesville.
Lloyd watched as it changed and upgraded over the years, but now, as a business man, he realizes why his store is being affected.
"It's like anything else, it's competition for the space. And it is a very valuable space. We need to sell 1,000 cards at $1.99 to meet the equivalent of selling one laptop. I understand, I understand it's business," he said.
And as he says goodbye to this location, he hopes the shopping center can always remember why they're there in the first place.
"I just don't want it to lose the magic that made Barracks Road, Barracks Road. And that's the local merchant."
As Lloyd and his three sons move empty boxes and shelves out of the store, he reflects on how much the store means to him. He says he pretty much owes everything to the shop and his parents for giving him the opportunity. It's what allowed his three sons to go to school and what allowed him to build a home for his family.
"It's bittersweet closing this place. It's more sweet than anything, because of all the fond memories. I'm sad only because I'm leaving the community. But I'll still be at Fashion Square and Pantops but I just won't be able to stay where I've been. Where I was rooted."
They'll officially close on Jan. 20.