As of last Friday, the building that could easily be dubbed the ‘Peach Majal,’ was officially opened for business and if traffic into and out of the parking lot is any indication since then, business is good.
That new building houses The Peach Corner Farmer’s Market, more commonly known to those who frequent the business simply as Peach Corner, opened this week in it’s brand new location, it is just over a block away from its original location over half a century ago.
Though the Taj Majal was built as a mausoleum to house the remains of Mumtaz Mahal, the third wife of Indian emperor Shah Jahan, in 1631, the ‘Peach Majal’ will undoubtedly bring joy and more importantly, fresh fruits and vegetables to local merchants.
Almost two year in the making, Peach Corner owners Judy and Darrell Hicks say are very excited about the opening of the new building, and based on the reactions they have gotten over the past week, they aren’t the only ones.
"We are really excited to be in the new building because there was a lot of confusion last year about where we were," she said. "The response has been really positive so far and the people seem to be enjoying the new place.
"We aren’t completely finished and there are some things we still want to do," she added. "We have a few ideas we are working on with another building on the property, which we hope to turn into an old-time type store where you can buy homemade fudge and brownies and stuff like that."
Lost in the shuffle of the new building’s opening may be the fact that this whole endeavor could have gone by the wayside. Not only did Hicks and her husband have a decision to make as far as rebuilding once they sold the old property to the Walgreen’s company, but they dealt with several restrictions when designing the new building.
Through it all, Hicks said the plan was always to reopen in the area simply because of the history of the business and the fact they wanted to reinvest in the community.
"My husband married into the right family because he is a total workaholic, so we go a long just great with each other," Hicks said. "Don’t get me wrong, we like to go out on vacations and take time off, but I don’t think there was ever any question that we would go on with this business, even though we had a lot of specifics to take care of regarding the kitchen and other parts of the new building.
"We have a lot of very loyal customers locally and from far away that visit us every year," she added. "I kind of feel like I was obligated to the people to carry on this business and give them a place to buy quality fruits and vegetables for their family."
While the customers may receive the majority of the attention from Hicks and her staff, she said there are others who are just as important to the Peach Corner that don’t always receive the recognition they deserve.
"We also have a lot of dedicated growers, many that have worked with us for years, who provide us with quality items to offer to the public," she said. "If it wasn’t for them, we wouldn’t be the business that we are today."
In addition to providing the service and quality their customers have come to know and love, Hicks said there are a few unique opportunities thanks to the new structure. She said a kitchen that was initially designed for employees to have an opportunity to eat something other than fast food while they are working
"We are hoping to have some cooking demonstrations in the kitchen and it’s going to be a good chance for people maybe to showcase some of their items," she added. "Hopefully everyone will enjoy the new place and what it has to offer as much as we will."