A collector has chosen to sell his personal collection piece by piece — which meant starting his own business in downtown Ottawa.
Greg Hendershot recently opened Prairie Cabin Antiques and Collectibles to help downsize his personal collection.
“I have tons of stuff. I’ve been collecting for about 10 years,” Hendershot, 50, Pomona, said. “It was a matter of time. I just wanted to open my own shop.”
Hendershot tries to bring in at least a few new antiques to the shop, 230 S. Main St., Ottawa, every day, he said, as a means of giving customers good variety. That variety is evident throughout the small shop as customers are greeted with the site of hand tools, license plates, numerous walking sticks, roller skates and even an icebox. Toward the back of the shop sits a hand-crank record player, which Hendershot proudly showed still is in working condition.
“The tools is what I really love, but I try to bring in stuff to catch everybody, instead of just catching the men,” he said. “So, I try to do something for everyone.”
Open about two weeks, Hendershot said, business now is going well at the shop, which is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday and until 7 p.m. Wednesday. A steady stream of customers and sales have been a boost. With the holidays approaching, Hendershot said he hopes the shop will see more business. He is considering expanding the hours to accommodate holiday shoppers.
Aided by his daughter, Kayla, Hendershot aims to keep his shop bright and open, making it easier for customers to peruse the many odds and ends in the store located in the heart of downtown Ottawa. With several antique stores just short walks from his storefront, Hendershot said, the competition shouldn’t hinder his business. In fact, he added, all the stores help to enhance an antique shopper’s experience in Ottawa.
“It’s not like competition,” he said. “We could have 100 stores here and it would just add to the town, because everybody has different stuff, and it would just draw in more people,” the store owner said, adding that all the antique stores in town are exceptional.
Parting with his personal collection is difficult at times, he said, but Hendershot knows when he simply has to let go. It is his hope, he said, that folks see his love for the business and give his shop a chance when out antiquing.
“It’s my passion. I love doing it,” he said. “I have some really neat stuff that I’ll be bringing in, and there’s some pretty neat stuff already in here.”