We have a GREAT Ace HW Store in town packed to the gills with everything you could need. Actually a far greater selection than the big box joints nearby. The owner personally thanks every shopper for their business and loves to chat about families. Most of his employees are really knowledgeable about their products, too. He runs a great business.
We had a similar place across from an apartment we lived in for a while...except this was a combination hardware store and pharmacy. Seriously. It was pretty much the only place you could go in Durham where the employees were guaranteed to speak intelligible English and know what they were talking about, both on the pharmacy side and the hardware store side.
Yup, we got an ACE just like that in our town. Family owned for years and they know eveyone. Great selection of products and the staff can tell you what you need for any application. Love all of the dogs laying around the store too.
We have a great Ace store in our area also and I always make it a point to go there if I need to buy something they carry. They are a little more expensive but the service and knowledge level is superb and it’s important that we make sure places like this survive.
In addition to the Home Depot, etc., I suspect Wal-Mart will be around for a while. Over the years I have seen them move into small cities, drastically cut prices and within a short period of time all the other little mom and pop places had to close. I really missed our small local drugstore with its soda fountain and jars full of penny and nickle candy, the butcher who knew exactly how each patron liked their cuts of meat, the baker who always had a cookie for any child coming in with their mom. It really was a reflection of what life was all about in days gone by. But all of that is gone now.