By Jim Krencik
Medina Journal-Register — MEDINA — Debbie and Howard McAllister own a growing collection of items found at auctions, estate sales and in auctioned storage lockers — one that led to an addition at their Route 31 home and a new business on Medina’s Main Street.
The Bluegill Trading Post, 543 Main St., opened Friday after months of preparation by the McAllisters. Inside a storefront that was most recently an office, the trading post has a well-organized but diverse selection of gifts, toys, housewares, books and unique items on tables crafted by Howard.
Business was brisk Saturday, with compliments coming for the store’s offerings. Debbie, who plans to retire from the Albion Correctional Facility in a few months, said they have about three times what could fit in the store. Variety will be a strength of the business.
“We have a collection of new and used, modern and vintage,” McAllister said. “It’s all set up in little departments ... so it’s not cluttered.”
Some things, like glassware, sold well enough that they had to restock them before business opened on Saturday. Other tables were grouped with holiday items and themes like princess toys.
It all comes from a hobby that began eight years ago. McAllister said she and her husband attend four or five auctions each month and don’t intend to offer consignment.
“(With an auction) each one is a surprise,” she said.
McAllister has sold items on Ebay, finding small bargains and selling them later.
“It’s a lot of fun buying something and then seeing what you can get for it,” McAllister said. That’s not necessarily the idea at the store, where the prices are at “yard sale” levels.
The store is named after a compromise — one of his father bands is the Moody Blues, hers is Vince Gill. It will be open on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at first, with additional hours during the holiday season. McAllister said more hours will be added once she retires.