Thursday, August 04, 2005

Another Chapter on THG's Life Closes

Another crucial part of my youth is finally closing down, joining the likes of the Budco Midtown, Super 130 Drive-In, Spider Kelly's, Third Street Jazz, Bacchanal, Chestnut Cabaret, Troy's and other stops along the highway of life.

Yes, The Pennsauken Mart -- one stop shop for soft pretzels, vintage Atari cartridges, paperbacks with their covers torn off, Spanish language action flicks, and gold lame lingerie with the words "Classy Lady" emblazoned in rhinestones -- is shutting its doors for good on October 1, 2005.

"But Dan," you're asking yourself, "where will people go for used Betamax players and lamps in the shape of Elvis's head?"

That's a good question my friend. The battle for The Mart -- long the heart and soul of the corridor separating suburban Route 130 (Cinnaminson, Riverton, Delran, Riverside and beyond) from grittier environs like Camden and some parts of Pennsauken -- has been a long and ugly one. Some tenants have shut their doors for good. Others have stopped paying rent since traffic in the once-bustling marketplace has slowed to a trickle. A planned move to a marketplace a few towns up in Willingboro was damaged by an official from that town referring to Mart merchants as "scumbags."

But, like the drive-in, The Mart will never truly die.

(Thanks to Joe Liebrandt for the tip!)

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