Darcee Alderman was in a tough position: raise $20,000 or close the doors at Monkton General Store for good.
Alderman said she and her husband owed the state thousands of dollars in taxes and were struggling to keep the country store open.
“We got to the point to where the tax department said you have 5 days to come up with 20 percent of what you owe,” Alderman said. “At that point, we figured it was time to tell the community what was going on.”
On Wednesday night, Alderman took to social media, letting customers know they would have to close shop on Saturday if they couldn’t come up with the money.
And the community quickly responded. On Saturday, Alderman said business was crazy. As they arrived, customers told her the parking lot was filled to capacity and more.
“We’ve met our goal,” she said. “It’s very exciting. The community and everyone is breathing a lot easier now.”
Sarah Rougier lives just up the street from the store and has been a regular customer for more than 15 years.
“I’m here just about every day,” Rougier said. “I would feel lost because it’s so much a part of my routine and day and my family depends on it.”
The Monkton General Store isn’t alone. More and more country stores are facing similar struggles due to competition with bigger businesses.
“I’m blessed to live in a community and state where people really care,” Alderman said. “I didn’t think anybody did.”