Currier’s Quality Market — the iconic, taxidermy-laden store in the Northeast Kingdom that might have faced closure this summer — has found a buyer.
The store’s namesake family will be packed up and moved out by July 31, said Jeff Currier, son of owner Jim Currier, who bought the Glover shop 53 years ago.
“It’s bittersweet,” the younger Currier said. “But (we’re) very happy. It’ll be nice when it’s all said and done; it’ll be nice for everybody.”
Jim Currier had decided this spring to sell his market, the only grocery store in the Orleans County town of 1,100, because of insurance company pressures and his then-approaching 80th birthday.
Without a buyer, he planned to shut the shop down in August — and with it, a community hub known statewide for its groceries, deli and stock of mounts and woodsy trinkets.
The family announced it had found a buyer in a July 9 post on Facebook, though Jeff Currier said Monday it was too early to reveal a name or the tentative price.
Randy Williams, president of the Glover Historical Society, was one of several community members who feared what the loss of Currier’s might bring.
So when he heard about the pending sale, he was relieved.
“What we think will happen will be that the new owner will certainly maintain that local feel to the store,” he said Tuesday. “Because they know that it’s an anchor in the community.”
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He said he knows the potential new owners, who live in Orleans County, but like the younger Currier, he kept quiet about their identity.
Back when Jim Currier announced he was stepping away from his store, Williams and his wife, Betsy Day, talked about the idea of townspeople raising money to reopen the market, like residents in nearby Albany did for their general store two years ago.
“I think — had there not been such a fairly quick interest in outside buyers — that we would have put something together,” Williams said. “Because it was that important to us to keep it as something that we could count on.”
After July 31, the store will stay closed until the fall, when the new owners plan to open, Jeff Currier said.
“And I’m gonna take the next day off,” he added.
Since the pending sale’s announcement, the Curriers have been clearing out the hundreds of taxidermy pieces and hunting photos that have lined the store’s walls for so many years.
Some of the preserved animals were given back to their original owners. But the rest were sold to Josh Olney, who owns Olney’s General Store in Orleans, about a 10-minute drive from Currier’s.
“I’ll certainly keep some of them to use in the store,” he said Tuesday, and others will be for sale.
Olney, who is also the general manager at the Orleans Country Club, said he had originally reached out to the Curriers to buy their store’s star moose — often sought out by selfie-taking guests.
“That led to a few conversations with Jim, and I ended up with everything,” he said.
He’d like the moose to find a new home in his store, but first has to figure out how to get it inside: Unlike the Glover market, his shop doesn’t have a big garage door. And he needs to make sure his store, much smaller than Currier’s, will have enough space.
His recent visits to pick up the taxidermy pieces revealed the impact Currier’s Quality Market has had on its customers:
People keep coming in for one last look, reminiscing about all the years they’ve kept coming back.
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