Bruce Variety to Re-Open on Woodmont in March

Community institution finalizes plans to re-locate to former Creative Parties spot.

Community institution Bruce Variety has finalized a deal to re-locate to the former Creative Parties space on Woodmont, and the store is set to re-open in March, owners tell Patch.

News that the 60-year community fixture was closing its doors due to high rent in the Bradley Shopping Center drew heavy media coverage and shock and sadness from loyal patrons. Residents rallied for the store, even organizing an online petition asking the landlord to re-negotiate the $22,000 monthly rent.

The store's new location at 8011 Woodmont Ave. was recently vacated by Creative Parties, which moved across the street. The location "is surrounded by condo and apartment highrises, has tons of foot traffic and will serve a huge segment of the Bethesda Chevy Chase community," Linda Ridenour, wife of Bruce Variety owner Richard Dimock, wrote in an email to Patch. 

"It was because of the press exposure and the resulting outcry from the community that we became so driven to relocate," Ridenour wrote. "We have had customers stop by during our move, to support us and promising to shop with us for years to come. I personally was touched by the tearful embraces from so many of our customers, and I can't wait to hug them again, this time with joy!"

Ridenour said the new location has a charming feel that's reminiscent of "the general store of days gone by."

The new store will feature expanded merchandise, a "handyman's corner," and a re-vamped sewing and fabric department that will offer knitting and sewing classes, Ridenour said.

Owners are planning a grand opening celebration when doors open in March.

Are you happy to see Bruce Variety stay in Bethesda? What do you think of the new location? Tell us in the comments.

BERNIE FISKEN January 31, 2013 at 11:57 AM
Congratulations to the Owners of Bruce Variety for finding an alternative Downtown Bethesda location for their store. Keeping Bruce Variety in the Bethesda Urban Village is a vivid example that the "New Bethesda" can and should keep its historic private sector institutions, as it brings in new instititutions. It is great that children of all ages can continue to enjoy shopping at Bruce Variety. It is a Children's Wonderland.
PansyAston January 31, 2013 at 12:54 PM
Jane Boynton January 31, 2013 at 01:00 PM
Wonderful! So happy to hear this!
mary knight January 31, 2013 at 01:15 PM
You'll gain a happy new raft of customers! Many homes in the new location are trapped by traffic; we can now walk to Bruce, and your inventory is perfectly suited to our needs.
canalDreams January 31, 2013 at 01:54 PM
Tracy Bloom Schwartz January 31, 2013 at 02:10 PM
Creative Parties is excited that the house on Woodmont has a new tenant and new neighbor. After 16 years we are happy to be around the corner at our new location 4822 St. Elmo. Welcome Bruce's
Lesley Krauland January 31, 2013 at 03:09 PM
I am so glad that Bruce's is able to relocate within the Bethesda Urban Village, and that it is expanding its services with sewing and knitting classes and a handyman's corner. Franklin's in Hyattsville converted from a hardware store into a successful variety/gift store and restaurant about 15 years ago. The local community there fully supports Franklin's, and Bethesda can do the same here. I wish great success for Bruce's and will gladly support a local variety store.
Jim McCallum January 31, 2013 at 03:15 PM
When I heard about the closing, my heart sank - another basic component of the Bethesda well-being - disappeared? So I'm very happy to hear about the relocation and I will be there to buy all the neat stuff that I never expected to see or buy when I went in to buy something I really need. If I hear about Strosnider's being forced out by the rapacious policies of the landlords (is it REIT, the same folks who are laying waste to the rest of Bethesda by forcing out the local enterprises?) I will truly despair about the future of our great town.
Mabel Reynolds January 31, 2013 at 03:28 PM
If you could get a person at your store to provide watch battery replacements, at a normal price, you would fill yourselves with glory and very happy customers. Please think about this. Welcome back.
Mary Edwards January 31, 2013 at 03:43 PM
Yay to the people who helped this happen!!
Terry Dubin January 31, 2013 at 09:21 PM
I think the charming house that was home to Creative Parties is an absolutely perfect fit for Bruce Variety. I'm so pleased that what at first seemed like a sad turn of events is now an exciting new chapter and a win for Bethesda!
Lenore Clarke February 01, 2013 at 12:59 PM
What a lovely new spot. So easy to access and can't wait to see the new sewing section and attend knitting classes! Congratulations on the relocation!
Bev February 01, 2013 at 02:53 PM
I'll have to drive. Where can I park?
Bethany Fineran February 01, 2013 at 04:21 PM
The B-CC Chamber welcomes you to our neighborhood! We look forward to having you as a close business neighbor!
Chris February 07, 2013 at 08:05 PM
Isn't that block going to be leveled for a new mixed use development soon?
shirley kefalas March 22, 2013 at 08:48 PM
Thank God or who's ever your HP is that looked over Bruce's Variety.....Thank You !!!!What would we do without you!!!!! Best wishes***** When do you plan on opening ????? Can't wait for the opening***********
Cee Zee Fishere March 28, 2013 at 05:02 AM
I live in L.A. & visited my kids living in Bethesda. Not a trip went by without my wandering through both Bruce's & Creative Parties & finding treasures. The kids have moved to Silver Spring but I'm glad I'm still able to look forward to these explorations. May both stores go from strength to strength.


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