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I walk my dog around Ambridge. Over the years we’ve covered a lot of ground! Some days we are on a mission and I scarcely notice anything around me. Other days we are more leisurely and I have a chance to look in store windows and take in my surroundings. I’ve walked past businesses in Ambridge that have come & gone. Shop fronts standing idle for longer than I like to see. So, when Max & I were walking past the old bowling alley in Ambridge and saw a new shop, I was excited! RiverTown Antiques had made a home in the Historic District of Ambridge.
I stopped in a soon as I could (dog-free, of course), and met one of the wonderful owners, Ann Sutherland. She owns RiverTown Antiques along with partner, Rick Bertko. Ann and I had a chance to speak and I was even more excited when I left. We talked about how many communities in Beaver County are re-examining what they are and what they want to become. Call it the old steel towns or the riverfront towns, many communities are figuring out how to make their towns and communities destinations again. She found a new home for her business based on that direction. Ann has her finger on the pulse of what’s happening in Ambridge. I walked out feeling so positive about the town’s and county’s futures.
Why Ambridge? That was one of the first questions out of my mouth when Ann and I talked. RiverTown Antiques opened in Rochester in 2008. After a good run there, they felt it was time for a change. In 2016, they began looking at different location for their shop. Ambridge wasn’t really on their list, but after researching the area and finding a great location, they decided to jump in. Ann cited a few new or remodeled restaurants in town and signs of a committed community as positive signs which led them to Ambridge. They opened on May 6th at 1307 Merchant St. in Ambridge. “We are head over heels excited to be in this spot,” says Ann. With 7 antique shops now in Ambridge and the work that the Ambridge Historic District Economic Development Committee (AHDEDC), she sees the long-term potential to build something compelling to bring to people in the community. These shops and restaurants, along with Old Economy Village are drawing customers from out of town to the area. They plan to continue growing that appeal with a quarterly newsletter and events throughout the year.
RiverTown Antiques is a spacious shop, taking up most of the old bowling alley and somehow retaining much of the charm. It’s the perfect stop on a fall day! You can get lost looking through all the great finds that Ann and Rick have acquired—from vintage games and toys to delicate depression era glass to antique furniture pieces. Chances are you won’t be walking out empty-handed either! There’s truly something for everyone. Make sure to tell Ann hello from me! Stop by September 9th for the Wine & Beer Festival from 5-7 p.m. in the Historic District!
For more information about RiverTown Antiques, check out their Facebook page or visit their website at www.rivertownantiques.com. For more information about upcoming events with the Ambridge Historic District Economic Development Committee, find them on Facebook. You can also pick up a newsletter when you stop into RiverTown Antiques.