Fairgrounds Furniture to close after 45 years
GREENE CO., Ohio (WKEF/WRGT) - In February, Fairgrounds Furniture celebrates its 45th anniversary.
It'll be their last. In a Facebook post today, the business announced it's closing for good, in April 2018.
Siblings Melissa Smith and Mark Hill have run the business, since taking it over from their father Harold "Mountain" Hill.
In 1973, "Mountain" opened the doors for the first time. To this day, his hat still hangs on a nail, and his favorite recliner is untouched.
"This would have killed him," Hill told Fox 45's Shavon Anderson during and interview in August. "If he wasn't already gone, this would have done it."
Over the summer, the store got a 90-day lease termination notice from the Greene County Agriculture Society. Hill told FOX 45's Shavon Anderson that the situation started last year. At the time, they had a lease through 2019. In January, the board had them sign a new deal that would have them move out during May's Hamvention. This year, the store moved everything into the main showroom and closed for five days. After the event, Hill said the board came back and asked them to consider completely vacating the premises for two weeks, in order to allow preparation for Hamventions in the future.
The board also asked for Smith to submit a proposal estimating the cost. She said the estimate to have a company come in, pack up and take all the furniture, store it, then bring it back, would be around $24,000.
In a notice of termination signed by Board President Jerry Liming, Hill and Smith were told:
"Upon entering the conversation between Fairground Furniture and two representatives from the Board of Directors, we find that the compensation of over twenty four thousand dollars (for which you would be asked to closed both the main Fairground Furniture Store and Conservation Building during the May event), exceeded the money we could afford to pay Fairground Furniture for this one event."
At one point, the family was looking to relocate to Xenia, with the help of city officials. Ultimately, what they could afford wasn't big enough to hold their inventory.
"The love and support we have received along with the privilege of serving our community for 45 years is one thing that cannot be taken away," reads the Facebook post.