Dollar short: The Dollar Tree in Oakhurst closes, will be replaced with gymA sign in the window of Dollar Tree in Oakhurst announces the store's last day in business, Jan. 5. Photo by Dan Whisenhunt
Shoppers browsed the merchandise at the Dollar Tree in Oakhurst on Sunday afternoon, Jan. 5.
It would’ve looked like an ordinary afternoon at the store were it not for a sign on the window announcing the Dollar Tree’s closure and cardboard placards left near the door by Fifth Avenue Upper Elementary students.
A local gym, FitWit, will be taking over the space on East Lake Drive and work will begin there in February. The store’s Kirkwood/Decatur location is currently located at 2191 College Ave NE. FitWit General Manager Josh Guerrieri is Oakhurst resident whose wife works at Oakhurst Elementary.
Guerrieri said he knows the Dollar Tree closing will disappoint many members of the community.
“I know it will be a bummer for many in the community because it provides a convenient solution for a variety of things,” Guerrieri said. “I know my family goes there about once a week.”
White FitWit will be providing an opportunity for exercise, the routine walks to the store have served a similar purpose for Bruce Tarnopolski and his wife Gale. On Sunday, they left the Dollar Tree carrying plastic bags. They’ve treated the Dollar Tree like a convenience store where they could buy balloons, cards and soda. Oakhurst Market next door is good for sandwiches and take-home meals, but doesn’t offer household items like light bulbs and batteries.
“Plus, we can walk here,” Tarnopolski said.
Another man, who declined to give his name, said he’s a regular customer.
“I didn’t want it to close,” he said. “I always came up here. I think a lot of people didn’t want it to close.”