Gift shop in downtown Quincy hopes to cater to tourists
QUINCY — Doug Tenhouse was eager for a relaxing life when he chose to retire at the end of 2020 after 33 years in the insurance business.
“I was ready to do what I wanted to do when I wanted to do it,” he said.
After a couple of months of volunteer work, Tenhouse quickly realized he needed more to do to keep busy.
Now he’s combining his love of antiques and collectibles into Loyd’s Gifts and Collectibles at 504 Hampshire. That site previously was the home to Potter & Vaughn, a local gift shop.
“Obviously, there’s a demand for a gift shop in the downtown area again,” said Tenhouse, who said the business was named after his father.
Tenhouse kept some of the items once offered at Potter & Vaughn, such as humorous socks, gifts for babies and greeting cards. He also is selling pottery created by Windsong Acres from Camp Point, Ill.
However, Tenhouse believes coffee mugs, postcards and dish towels promoting Quincy and its history will cater to tourists. He’s also looking for collectible vintage items with advertising from old Quincy businesses.
“There’s a shortage of Quincy items downtown for a tourist,” he said. “I’m working to get more Quincy items, Abraham Lincoln and the Mississippi River, to kind of cater to tourists.
“When I talked to (officials at) the District, they told me they consistently have people come in saying, ‘Where can I go to buy Quincy items?’ There were a limited number of places that they could send them. I had a friend trying to put together a basket of Quincy items for a friend visiting out of town. She had to go all over trying to find things. Now you can find them here.”
Lisa Crocker, former owner of Potter & Vaughn, advised Tenhouse on what gift items were popular for her business. Tenhouse said other District business owners noted that shoppers have asked for a place to buy greeting cards since the Kirlin’s Hallmark flagship store closed in 2017 after nearly 70 years in downtown Quincy.
Tenhouse was a little reluctant to start a business in the District because many shoppers went online during the pandemic. However, he believes there is support for his small business, and he also wants to create an online presence.
Loyd’s Gifts and Collectibles had a soft opening on Saturday, April 24. Its grand opening was on Saturday, May 1. The store is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Friday and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday. It is closed on Sunday and Monday.
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