Rimbey New & Used, a unique little second hand store located just south of Main Street, has closed its doors.
The store was a delightful conglomeration of almost anything and everything one would expect to find in a new and used store, as well as a little more of this and that.
It was a fun place to go and poke around and discover and finally emerge, often with a new found treasure in hand.
The store had furniture, knickknacks, jewelry, books, cassettes, pictures, vases, tablecloths, curtains and pretty much everything else including a couple of kitchen sinks.
Originally an old theatre, Rimbey New and Used had plenty of space for owner Lynn Scott to attractively display a wide variety of merchandise.
And, of course, last, but not least, Rimbey New and Used boasted the cats, Miss Puss and her male counterpart, Mr. Boots. The cats were not for sale, of course, and were, in their own special and unique way, very much part of Rimbey New and Used.
With its business days numbered, the store seemed curiously empty last week, with only a few remaining pieces of furniture and several cardboard boxes packed up and ready to go spread out on the floor.
Scott, who took a moment to chat in the almost deserted building, expressed mixed feelings about leaving the place she has spent 10 years building up and redefining as her very own.
“I love decorating and going to yard sales and this business allowed me to do those things. Actually, she said, at the risk of sound too maudlin, it gave me a reason to get up in the morning.”
She loving patted Mr. Boots, who had stretched himself out on the counter, before continuing to reflect on her years as a businesswoman in Rimbey.
To keep her store stocked with unique and quality merchandise, Scott had to constantly be on the lookout for the best buys which she, in turn, could sell to her customers at a fair price.
With a sharp eye for a bargain and a willingness to travel to garage sales and auctions as well as walk-in customers who brought merchandise to her, the business took on a life of its own and its reputation spread far and wide.
“I had customers who brought visitors from places like Germany in with them. They would tell me they wanted to show off their favorite store.”
For 10 years, Scott has weathered the storms of inflation, but even with the ebb and flow of the economy, her business has remained fairly steady.
However, the benefits of owning Rimbey New and Used can’t be measured in dollars and cents, she said.
“Without my loyal customers I couldn’t have made a go of it and I very much enjoyed the interaction with my customers. In the 10 years I have been here I have made a lot of friends.”
But, owning a new and used store can be physically demanding, and as much as Scott loved her business, she knew it was time for her to move on.
“The physical demands have become too much and I need some time off to figure out the next chapter in my life.”
She is not leaving the area, however, and is looking forward to seeing her friends when she is out and about.
“I’ll still be around, my husband and I enjoy the area and I am very much looking forward to having the summer off. I can’t remember the last time I had a summer off.”