TICONDEROGA - Ticonderoga officials and business leaders hope Jan. 31 will officially mark a downtown renaissance.
That's the date Two Brothers Meat Market formally opens its new location in the former Arthur Drugs building on Montcalm Street.
"It is wonderful to see area businesses investing in their communities," said Matt Courtright, Ticonderoga Area Chamber of Commerce executive director. "Two Brothers' expansion was something that was needed for their business to grow and offer additional services, but will certainly benefit the community as a whole.
"Two Brothers' new location will be an asset by bringing additional traffic flow into the heart of downtown Ticonderoga," he added. "The revitalized buildings and traffic flow will assist in attracting new businesses to the community and drive economic growth which will have a positive impact on the entire area."
That's the hope of Gary Namer, who owns the business with his brothers Joe and Fred.
"We were born and raised in Ticonderoga," he said. "We're committed to downtown Ti. We could have got up to the Four Corners (Routes 9N and 74), but we didn't want to see another empty storefront downtown.
"There are too many vacant buildings downtown and we're saddened by it," Namer said. "We look forward to working with other businesses to market downtown Ti."
The Two Brothers move and renovation is the first project of the Ticonderoga Revitalization Alliance, created last year to help Ticonderoga's business district prosper.
The building had been vacant a decade.
Susan Rathbun, chairwoman of the Ticonderoga main Street Partnership and owner of Rathbun Jewelers downtown, believes the new store will help generate business downtown.
"TMSP and Rathbun Jewelers are thrilled that Two Brothers selected the former Arthur Drug building for this important downtown re-investment project," Rathbun said. "The storefront sat vacant for many years and now it has a fresh new look.
"It's bringing lots of traffic back into the heart of downtown which has been needed," she said. "It offers expanded shopping choices, plus each successfully revitalized building and new business attracted to downtown acts as a catalyst for economic growth and has a positive effect on the quality of life for the entire community."
Deb Malaney, Ticonderoga supervisor, agreed the new Two Brothers is a boost for downtown.
"It's wonderful, exciting," she said. "It's the perfect business for downtown. We finally have our local market.
"Hopefully this is just the beginning of private investment in our downtown area," Malaney said.
The formal grand opening of Two Brothers Meat Market will be Monday, Jan. 31, at 10 a.m.
Two Brothers Meat Market offers fresh meats, cheeses, produce, groceries, homemade sandwiches, subs, hot foods and more.
As part of the grand opening celebration Jan. 31 Two Brothers will have complimentary food and refreshments and will raffle a $25 gift certificate, a $50 gift certificate and a beef tenderloin. Customers can enter to win these raffles the week prior.
In addition the store will offer special promotions throughout the week including 10 percent off fresh cut meats and deli slices. The grand opening week celebration will run until Saturday, Feb. 5.
"We invite you to join the chamber, the town of Ticonderoga, PRIDE of Ticonderoga, the Ticonderoga Montcalm Street Partnership, the Ticonderoga Revitalization Alliance, as well as other area organizations and community members as we celebrate with and support Two Brothers Meat Market in their grand opening at their new location at 109 Montcalm St.," Courtright said.
Two Brothers opened April 1, 2000, near the LaChute River. In the past decade it out-grew its 900 square feet location. The new store is 2,100 square feet with a kitchen. The extra space has allowed the business to serve hot lunches and increase its inventory to include groceries and local produce, when available.
"We found a niche," Namer said. "We rely on quality, fair prices and personal service. We try to treat every day like it's our opening day."
The Namers are carrying on a family tradition. Their parents, Fred and Anne Namer, operated The Little Store on Cossey Street in the 1950s and 60s. The brothers - Gary, Joe and Fred - all worked at grocery stores before opening Two Brothers.
But why is it called Two Brothers Meat Market when there are three brothers?
"Joe and Fred had the idea and started the businesses," Gary explained. "Fred soon got sick and Joe called me and asked me to come up from Glens Falls to help out. I really enjoyed it and decided to stay."