Not many people outside the area may be aware of this great 100-year-old community – but see why almost everyone knows about Parkrose Hardware …
Here are just some of the Parkrose Business Association leaders and members who turned out for the grand reopening, and “chain/ribbon cutting”, at Parkrose Hardware.
Story and photos by David F. Ashton
Just seeing folks from the Parkrose Business Association (PBA) and their Parkrose neighbors stream into the store put a smile on the faces of brothers David Ableidinger and Brian Ableidinger, on April 12.
In addition to their regular customers, people came from far and wide to congratulate the Ableidingers and their staff at their “Grand Reopening” in their mid-County location.
David and Brian Ableidinger welcome the community to their newly-expanded Parkrose Hardware store.
“We did a huge remodel of the store,” David Ableidinger told East Portland News. “The store, here, first opened in 1969. We redecorated the store, refinished the floor, and rearranged our merchandise to make things easier to find.”
They also added 3,000 sq.ft. of retail space for fasteners and for the builders. “Some of that space was underutilized; this gives us more room for fasteners – a strong seller in the store.”
Ace Hardware event planner, Frankie Heiskell, shows off the celebratory decorated cake.
Anyone who has shopped at the store knows there’s a real difference between Parkrose Hardware, and “big-box” chain stores. “That difference is service,” Ableidinger explained. “We have more one-on-one help. We can help them solve a problem, not just sell them hardware and supplies.”
What most retail customers don’t know, Ableidinger said, is the store also has a large base of both industrial and manufacturing customers. “To take care their needs, we have four outside representatives.”
This ROTC Color Guard stands ready to “Present the Colors”.
Cut a ribbon? No way! David and Brian Ableidinger grab bolt cutters and get ready to cut the Grand Opening Ceremonial Steel Chain, held by PBA Board Members Wayne Stoll and Jason Zwick.
Snip! Parkrose Hardware has officially been reopened!
PBA representatives stepped up to speak on behalf of the local neighborhood business district. “Everyone knows Parkrose Hardware throughout the City of Portland and the greater Vancouver area,” said Wayne Stoll of Argay Square. “Thank you for making this investment in our community, and for your commitment to this area.”
Wayne Stoll says he “brought a few notes” for his speech.
PBA Vice President Jason Zwick, State Farm Insurance Agent, whose office is “located nearby”, congratulates the Ableidingers on their grand reopening.
“My office is on the other side of that east wall,” pointed out PBA VP Jason Zwick. We are extremely proud to be part of this grand reopening. Parkrose Hardware is a longtime member of our association.
“Did you know they originally opened in 1948?” Zwick rhetorically asked. “There’s not a lot of businesses that can say they’ve been around for 65 years. They’ve continued to set the example of how to integrate a business into the community, and become its identity.”
Brian Ableidinger thanks attendees for their ongoing support.
“I welcome you all,” exclaimed Brian Ableidinger. “The bottom line is, all of you in our community, is that we could not do it without you. It is a partnership. We love being here; this is our home – even though we have another store in Vancouver.
“This is our roots and we love this community,” Brian Ableidinger continued. “We’ve been very blessed to have you as customers, helping us grow.”
Speaking about the nearly 80 employees, he extolled, “It took all of our staff to pull this off in a way that was beyond [what] David and I [could do alone], for sure.”
Well-wishers are treated to Subway sandwiches – fresh from the shop located in the Parkrose Hardware complex.
10625 NE Sandy Blvd, Portland, OR 97220
© 2013 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News