The Variety Store
The Variety Store was located on the west side of 33rd Street just south of the Hinky
Dinky grocery store. A Jewish couple by the name of Cohen were the proprieters.
With an unfailing courtesy and a desire to please, they responded immediately when a
customer came in the door. If they did not have the item you were looking for, they always
offered to order it and have it in the next day or two.
The store had an amazing variety of items for sale: housewares, sewing supplies,
hardware, stick on soles and heels for shoes, beauty supplies, figurines, model airplanes,
candy, a few little drugs like aspirin, and much more. It was an interesting place to visit. In
the days when kids got lots of assignments to “Go to the store,” children were sent to buy
a loaf of bread, 4 bananas, a small box of cheese, and stop at the Variety Store for a
spool of number 3 white thread.
The Variety Store was a valuable asset to the neighborhood. But one day a sign was
posted: “Close Out Sale.” Upon asking Mr. Cohen the reason, he said that he and his
wife had made their “fortune” and were retiring. He was going to be an inventor and just
then was working on a framework to be mounted under automobiles. Its purpose was to
stop the car under icy conditions by being lowered to the street where special cleats
would hold the car. Obviously, the idea didn’t take hold. but the Cohens sold out anyway.
The people in the neighborhood sorely missed them and their “Variety Store”.
Wilwerding, Leo, The Variety Store, GPNA Pride, June 1996
|Gifford Park Neighborhood Association
P.O. Box 31462, Omaha, NE 68131-0462