I shop there nearly every day; fans of This Victorian Life might remember my mentions of it in my book. It is the only place I can walk to in less than half an hour where I can buy milk, fruit, vegetables, and other groceries.
I had heard that the owners were thinking of selling the business, but assumed that the store's 121 years of operation would set a good example for whoever was lucky enough to purchase it and take up the torch. There was absolutely no thought in my mind that it would close. I was flabbergasted when I walked into the store this morning to buy flour and saw this sign:
"Aldrich's Market Era Ending:
No 'White Knight' Expected to Rescue Historic Grocery"
If they can't find someone to buy the business, it really will close on January 31st.
This store is hugely important to the history and the present of Port Townsend —a wonderful city which I love. So, I am issuing a call to action because, contrary to newspaper headlines, I believe in white knights. Please spread the word about Aldrich's to all your friends, especially any in the grocery business. Tell them to think about what a valuable opportunity this is to keep a Victorian business in operation. Tell them to look at the store's Facebook page and consider how valuable it is to the community. And tell them that if they have any interest at all in being the ones who keep this business going, to please contact the current owners and ask them about the possibility:
940 Lawrence Street
Port Townsend, WA 98368
I am sure there must be someone out there who will see what a special place this is, and what a wonderful business opportunity for people with a love of history and community: we just have to let them know about it in time. Spread the word!