BERLIN -- A beloved business in Berlin has decided to close up shop after an outstanding run – 140 years.
The pet supply and feed store, A.S. Labieniec is in an old red barn by the railroad tracks and dates back to at least 1878, said owner John Connery.
Connery began working for the Labieniec family in the mid 1980’s and bought the store in 2015.
“It’s an icon in town, the big red barn on Farmington Avenue,” Connery said on the last day of business at the shop.
Connery sighted continued competition from big box stores and on-line retailers like Amazon as reasons the store shuttered its doors.
“Unfortunately feed stores are becoming a thing of the past,” he said.
Joyce Connery, John’s wife, who ran the daily operation at the store said, “I love small stores and more people need to support small businesses.”
She added, “I was blessed to have people come in here and enjoy my store as much I as enjoyed it with my family.”
Well-wishers sent messages to the Connery’s via Facebook and some came by to bid farewell in person.
Deborah Vitale, from Newington visited for her last time and said, “I wanted to show my support and tell them how bad I felt that they were closing.”
It is unknown if a new business is slated to move into the old barn in Berlin.