The owners of Bruce Variety have officially signed a lease Jan. 30 for a new location on Woodmont Avenue in Bethesda and expect to open the store by March 1.
“We’re very excited,” said Linda Ridenour, the wife of store owner Richard Dimock.
The new space, at 8011 Woodmont Avenue, is less than a mile from the old location in Bradley Shopping Center in Bethesda where the store had done business for 60 years.
The vibrantly painted house where Bruce Variety will move to was once the Sir Walter Raleigh Inn and, more recently, Creative Parties Ltd., which has since moved around the corner to St. Elmo’s Avenue in Bethesda.
Ridenour told The Gazette that they chose not to renew their lease in Bradley Shopping Center, located at Arlington Road and Bradley Boulevard, because of the cost of rent, which was $40 per square foot plus an annual 3 percent increase.
Ridenour said Wednesday the new location is just under 5,000 square feet and that they are “getting more for their money,” though she would not say how much rent is at the new space.
She told The Gazette earlier this month that overwhelming response from the community “inspired” them to find a new location. An online petition asking for them to reopen garnered more than 2,900 signatures as of Wednesday afternoon.
Ridenour said there is a parking lot next to the new location.
The new Bruce Variety store, which sells everything from baking supplies to Halloween costumes, will have larger fabric and ribbon sections.
“It’s going to be the old Bruce Variety, plus more,” Ridenour said.