The Village Food Mart in Oriskany is slowly fading away. Raymond Kahler has owned the store for the past 38 years, but tells us the business just isn’t there anymore.
"The business has been declining a little bit over the last 5 years, and now it’s dropped off to where you don’t see nothing. They just put a Dollar General in over here around the corner here which doesn’t help matters. You know so it’s…. it’s finally came to an end."
Many of the remaining customers come in for lottery tickets. Raymond Kahler tells them, “Good luck. I hope you win. I really do.”
Kahler says the thing he’s going to miss the most is the people, and when the store closes up, a part of him is going with it.
"The atmosphere and everything else is different in a little small mom and pop store. They're more community minded and everything else. You know different things like that, which people are going to miss and not see anymore really. They’re not going to see it anymore."
The shelves of the store are becoming bare as the last of the inventory goes. Kahler still stocks the shelves with some items for a few of his loyal customers, but when it’s time to close up shop he’s planning on donating much of it to the Veteran’s Outreach Center. He says at least something good will come out of it, as the store’s time is almost up.
"Probably within the next week or two I’d say. I’m probably going to just put the key in the door and lock it up for good really. Which it will be a sad day for me, too."
The owner says it will be just a few more weeks before closing the doors on the Village Food Mart forever. After that, you’re going to have to rely on the chain stores for all your last-minute needs.