Bedeque Village Store soon to be residence; community members upset
For years, the Bedeque Village Store has been a community staple. But now, windows are covered and the store is no longer open.
Don MacFarlane, one of the community’s municipal councillors, said it’s been in the community for over 100 years.
“A lot of people are up in arms about its closing,” he said.
Earlier this year, MacFarlane asked the current owner, Erik Gerlund, when it was opening. He was told soon. But then it was pushed to another date. Now it’s being renovated into a house for Gerlund and his mom.
“It’s been a figure in the community that everyone knows,” said MacFarlane.
The Journal Pioneer reached out to Gerlund multiple times for comments, but went unanswered. He is currently in British Columbia.
Jason Luce, a fellow Bedeque resident, said the village store was a key location in his childhood.
“I remember as kid, my friends and I would hop on our bikes or walk down to the store for a treat or something to drink. I even remember when it used to have gasoline. It’s always been a great spot.”
The original building was built in 1900 but was later destroyed in a fire. The current building set up shop in 1938.
“The thing to do was always, ‘let’s go down to the Village store’.”
Gerlund purchased the store in mid-2016. He planned to renovate it, giving it a “five-anddime” kind of feel, as well as reopening the store’s kitchen.
In a previous interview with the Journal Pioneer, Gerlund said it was a dream of his to open an old-style village store.
Luce says it’s upsetting that the store will not be reopening.
“It’s a big inconvenience that
the store won’t be around. A lot of people don’t work within this community, so if they forget to pick something up while they’re in town, they could always stop in at the store.”
The Village Store also acted as a post office.
“Now anything bigger than what can fit in our mailbox will force us to go to Summerside or Albany.”
It’s weird to see the building and know it’s not the store anymore, he added.