Thorpe and Hoberg’s partnership appeared to have dissolved circa 1906 and the store became Thorpe & Co.; Oscar Hoberg’s name was later on a separate jewelry shop on Pierce Street.
George Thorpe’s daughter, Mae Louis Thorpe, married Wilson Clark in 1922, andWilson Clark ran the store for decades. In 1923 they had a son, George Thorpe “Bud” Clark, who was Rusty Clark’s father. Bud Clark joined the business in 1947.
Wilson E. “Rusty” Clark joined the business in 1976, shortly after graduating from the University of Kansas and a stint with another jeweler in Lawrence, Kansas. He married the former Karen Bloom in April 1977. Like her husband, Karen has worked at Thorpe for decades.
Early in his career at the store, Clark and his father were faced with a major decision, one that confronted all of Sioux City’s downtown retailers at the time — whether to move to the Southern Hills Mall, which opened in 1980. Among its contemporaries, Thorpe was nearly alone in the decision to stay put.
George Thorpe Clark retired in about 1986 or 1987. He died in April 2015 at age 91.
Decades ago, most rings were sold ready-made as they were under the counter. Today, everybody wants their ring customized.
“People like this part of this ring, and this part of this ring, and they want to put a different size stone in it than what was already set in it, so it became much more personalized to the person,” Clark said.
KALAMAZOO, MI — While the coronavirus pandemic left many small businesses in a pinch, the Kalamazoo Mall saw several new businesses open their doors in 2020.
This holiday season, those new business owners are leaning on one another and paying it forward as they promote shopping local and Small Business Saturday deals for the approaching gift-giving season.
Just a month after opening, Colors & Cocktails: The Mobile Art Party closed down alongside the rest of Michigan’s businesses after the stay-at-home order in March. It was a tough start for owner Lauren Lasater, who had just arrived downtown after expanding from her studio space in the Park Trades Center.
But, Lasater is a wine-glass-half-full kind of person. She saw the challenge as a creative opportunity.
“As a military spouse I had to overcome so many obstacles,” Lasater said. “I refuse to have a worldwide pandemic get me down.”
Her glass painting and canvass classes became Zoom art classes, with kits that could be purchased remotely and picked up curbside. Under the current public health order, Colors & Cocktails can have about eight people in store or host a class with a single household or a hybrid of online and in-person participants.
With the holiday season approaching, Lasater said she is excited to offer Kalamazoo shoppers gift ideas from small business owners like herself under one roof.
“I can help support local artists and women-owned businesses and minority businesses, because I’ve had so many people take a chance on me,” she said. “That’s allowed me to now take a chance on other people and support their small businesses within my small business.”
Lasater found the same spirit of paying it forward among other new business owners in Kalamazoo. While at Park Trades Center, she met Bee Joyful Shop owner Jessica Thompson and Great Lakes Thrift owner Anika Johnson.
The women bonded, and have supported the growth of each other’s enterprises. All three moved onto the Kalamazoo Mall this year.
“I said, ‘We need all of us women, we need boss babes down on Kalamazoo Mall,’” Lasater said.
Downtown business owners have leaned on each other as both friends and customers. Thompson said she bought art kits from Colors & Cocktails, and a yoga subscription from Down Dog Yoga to show support for her fellow entrepreneurs.
After seeing the success of the art classes, the zero-waste Bee Joyful Shop has added some do-it-yourself classes of its own to make lip balms, body scrubs and lotion bars.
“All of us are just very strong women and we will not give up no matter,” she said. “We will pivot and we will think of new ideas and we will come together.”
Mason Jar Plant Shop owner Dianna Nance said she is committed to shopping local. Nance hopes to set an example this holiday season.
“I am shopping only local,” she said. “If I can’t find it, I won’t get it.”
Her plant shop opened in October and was immediately welcomed into the downtown community, Nance
Los Angeles Police Department detectives are searching for a man suspected of stabbing a downtown L.A. jewelry store owner to death earlier this month, authorities said Wednesday.
LAPD released images from surveillance video Wednesday showing a man believed to be the assailant.
According to police, he attacked the owner of a store located in the 700 block of South Broadway on Nov. 3, entering the business and leaving within about six minutes.
He stabbed the owner several times before running off, traveling eastbound on 7th Street from Broadway and then northbound on Spring Street from 7th, police said.
Paramedics pronounced the victim dead at the scene.
The killer was carrying a white grocery bag as he fled, according to police. Although it’s not clear what, if anything, was inside.
In a news release, LAPD did not indicate whether anything was taken from the store or say whether the incident was a suspected robbery. Police have not given a possible motive.
KTLA has reached out to LAPD for further details.
Police have described the attacker as a man believed to be Hispanic and 30 to 40 years old, standing about 5 feet, 6 inches tall and weighing around 160 to 180 pounds.
Anyone with information is urged to reach homicide detectives at 213-996-4149. During non-business hours or on weekends, calls should be directed to 877-LAPD-24-7 (877-527-3247).
Those wishing to remain anonymous can call L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS (800-222-8477) or visit lacrimestoppers.org.
Suggest a Correction
FRANKLIN, Tenn. — Hollie Rollins feels fortunate to own her small business in downtown Franklin, even in the middle of a pandemic.
Savory Spice — nestled along the storefronts of Main Street — still sells its merchandise to consumers looking for a different taste to their meals. But the row of shops and restaurants looks different this year. Customers are greeted with mask mandate signs on windows and hand sanitizer stations upon walking inside.
“We are really lucky that … pandemic or not, everyone eats food,” Rollins said. “We are trying to highlight new and interesting flavors. People are cooking more in their own kitchens.”
She said this year customers have been making it a priority to shop at locally owned businesses.
“We live in Franklin and operate in Nashville,” Rollins said. “The people of Nashville and Franklin are incredibly supportive of small local businesses. They ask us if we are doing OK or need anything. They jokingly say they can buy some more pepper if they need to. We are reminded every day how grateful we are. People could easily purchase from a big box but they make the effort to come to our store.”
The store along with others will participate in the Heritage Foundation and Downtown Franklin Association’s Holiday Magic on Main.
“There’s no doubt the pandemic has affected everything about how we work, how we interact, and even how we celebrate,” Heritage Foundation CEO Bari Watson Beasley said. “Our Holiday Magic on Main promotion offers residents and visitors the chance to celebrate the winter holidays by spending time with their loved ones in our beautiful downtown district, making memories at our unique restaurants and shopping for distinctive gifts at our locally owned shops.”
How to participate
Holiday Magic on Main will kick off Nov. 27 with the lighting of the iconic NOEL sign atop the White Building at Main Street and Fifth Avenue, and a ceremony at 4 p.m. that will conclude with Franklin Mayor Ken Moore reading a proclamation in honor of the event.
On Small Business Saturday — Nov. 28 — many participating downtown merchants will offer special discounts and promotions, and showcase holiday window displays.
The DFA is working with the TMA Group to offer free Saturday shuttles between downtown Franklin and The Factory from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Nov. 28, Dec. 5, Dec. 12 and Dec. 19.
Downtown Franklin Association Main Street Director Jill Burgin noted the free shuttle offers flexibility for people to park at The Factory and shop both there and in downtown Franklin.
“With the road work going on along Franklin Road, we want to do everything possible to make the shopping experience easier,” Burgin said. “The National Retail Federation reports that more people will be