It’s the end of a jewelry store era, with the owner of V.V. Vick, Jewelers at The Landings shopping center calling it a career at the business that has been operating in Columbus since 1929.
Penny Vick, daughter of founders V.V. and Atelia “Tilly” Vick, said Wednesday she expects the doors to her store to close permanently before the calendar page turns to 2017. That means Saturday is the final day for the retailer.
Vick announced what she is calling a “retirement sale” in early December, with plans to liquidate everything in the store, including fixtures. She will turn her attention to improving her health.
“Because of my medical condition, I have no choice,” said Vick, who acknowledged this is a bittersweet moment for her and that she always thinks of her late parents and the business they started nearly nine decades ago. She also won’t forget those with which her family has done business.
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“I’ll miss the people,” Vick said in her retirement announcement. “Many of them have become more than customers. They’ve become my friends.”
Vick, however, said that times have changed dramatically for retailers since her father set up a watch repair counter inside “Mr. Ellie Wheat’s Drug Store” on Broadway after relocating to Columbus from Bradenton, Fla. That was followed by the opening of a very small store on 12th Street in downtown Columbus, then a relocation to 1218 Broadway.
The family launched a second store at Cross Country Plaza off Macon Road in the 1970s, eventually leaving downtown altogether and consolidating its retail operation there. It was in 2007 that the decision was made to relocate once again from Cross Country Plaza to The Landings off Airport Thruway.
Penny Vick’s mother died in 1996, with her father passing away in 2004. They left behind a business that ultimately endured 87 years.
“Mr. Vick, known as a true Southern gentleman, was always the first to open the doors at his business and the last to leave each day,” the retirement announcement said of the founder. “He promptly stood up to greet every customer, a sign of respect that was an integral part of his very being.”
The changes Penny Vick said she has witnessed through the years include the wave of Internet shopping that has disrupted most brick-and-mortar businesses. Consumer tastes have evolved as well, she said.
“Thank you for your loyalty, friendship and memories,” she said in a final message to customers.