By Robert K. Yosay
A local landmark for more than 70 years, the Andrews Shopping Center at state Route 46 and East Market Street in Howland Center really hasn’t changed much.
It still boasts a player piano — for a quarter you can hear it. There are antique toys, Lionel trains and displays and just about everything and anything hardware you can think of.
Harmon Andrews III, the third- generation owner, looks around the store like it is a longtime friend. After all, he grew up here.
Andrews III helped his dad, mom and grandpa as they changed the store from a gas station, then lunch counter, bought a frozen- custard machine, and brought in the hardware after a friend of theirs knew of a hardware store that was going out of business.
Customers, most of whom he knows by name, just have to ask once for a part or explain what they need, and he has it for them at the register.
There probably isn’t anything he doesn’t have somewhere in the store.
It’s part hardware store, part hobby shop with its trains and tracks, and an old-fashioned corner country store that has its own personality with antique cars, toys and even a motorcycle.
Andrews Shopping Center doesn’t have to be like the big-box stores. It’s a part of the community.