ARTHUR – The Farmers Plus on Smith Street in Arthur is closing its doors after nearly a decade serving the farming community in Wellington North.
Lloyd Hurlburt opened the store in the former Arthur Co-op location, at 211 Smith Street, in April 2013.
He felt at the time that the agricultural community was under-served in the village.
But as retirement nears, the 70-year-old is pulling back to focus solely on the Farmers Plus Elmira location.
Elmira store manager Will Holloway confirmed to the Advertiser March 17 is the final day of business in Arthur.
Last year’s opening of Arthur Ace Hardware not far from the Farmers Plus location played a big part in Hurlburt’s decision, Holloway said.
“He has decided that he can pull out of there and not feel like he’s abandoning anybody,” Holloway explained.
Hurlburt is “pretty torn up about it,” Holloway said, though the owner has mulled closing the store since last fall, and staffing has been minimal for at least a year.
For many in the community, Farmers Plus was the farmers’ version of a convenience store, with friendly staff who went above and beyond for its customers.
On the shelves was everything from chainsaw oil to toys, but animal feed was by far the biggest seller, according to Holloway.
The business was also known for carrying “that one thing” you couldn’t find elsewhere, he said.
“That’s the kind of thing that we do; if you need something and you don’t know where else to go, swing by Farmers Plus, there’s a chance we’ve got it sitting here waiting for that one time that somebody needs it,” Holloway said.