Our local drug store with a small toy section for the kids and a soda fountain lasted until about 1990 or so. Now our town and the adjoining towns have two Walgreens and two CVS, all within about a mile of each other. The old way of life was so pleasant. Luckily our downtown is quaint, still vibrant, and the city has done a good job keeping most franchises out.
When you compare the Walgreens and CVS to what we used to have I wonder how we possibly survived with all that stuff. Of course if we wanted toilet tissue,breakfast cereal or dog food, we went to the grocery store. Best place in the world to get a milkshake or a black and white sundae (marshmallow on one half and hot fudge on the other) or a wonderful banana split. Our pharmacist always was able to whip up something for whatever ailed you. Soda jerk was a job filled by kids after school and the owners always supported and attended all the high school sports events.
Yes, it was a lot more pleasant. Totally different kind of people and value system back then, too. Glad you have been able to maintain your downtown area.