Waddington hardware store stays open thanks to help from family and friends

WWNY Waddington hardware store stays open thanks to help from family and friends

WADDINGTON, N.Y. (WWNY) - The Christmas spirit is alive and well at a Waddington hardware store as family and friends pitch in to keep it open.

It didn’t look good for Waddington Hardware and Building Supply over the weekend. Its entire full-time staff of four went into quarantine.

“I decided it would be pertinent, it would be safer, to just shut down until I knew I could get enough staff,” said Karen Thew, owner.

Sunday night, Thew posted on Facebook the store would close for at least two days, maybe more. But Monday something happened.

“We accidentally left the door open,” she said. “People just started coming in.”

The place was safe. It had been thoroughly wiped down.

Thew called around. Family, friends and former employees answered that call. On-the-job training began. None of it surprises customer Karen Sharlow.

“With this small town, everybody is for everybody...And whenever we’re in a crisis, we all just pull together,” she said.

It has been a tough year for businesses and the current COVID-19 surge is threatening many anew.

“At this time with the fresh trees, and the Christmas – and that being our bread and butter at this time of year – it probably would have put a huge dent in. It would have made things even more precarious,” said Thew.

Christmas trees from the family’s own tree farm are a tradition at Waddington Hardware and Building Supply. There a lot of the holiday stuff inside as well.

The building has been through pandemics, wars and a lot more. They’ve been selling hardware there for more than 120 years.

Making do is a tradition here.

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