Saturday, March 29, 2003
At least one business that left Jackson for the suburbs is back. Max Contemporary Furnishings, which in its 28 years of operation has moved from the city to Ridgeland and back to Jackson, opened a bigger, better and brighter showroom in the newly opened Fondren Corner two weeks ago. Owner and interior designer Tommie Goodman said she likes the idea of being based in a community-oriented neighborhood like Fondren. The new store features bright yellow, purple and green walls and tons of trendy furniture throughout its multi-room retails space.
Fondren Corner, which is slated to officially open this week, is located on the corner of North State Street and Fondren Place in the old Wildlife and Fisheries building. This first level of this rainbow-colored building will serve as a retail space, while upper levels will be home to living spaces that will open at a later date.
The store's line-up is varied. Rooster's is located in the front of the building, with inside seating and a patio overlooking both North State Street and Fondren Place. Their famous burgers are served on made-from-scratch buns along with ribs, salads, red beans and rice, country fried steak and banana pudding.
The owners of Walker's Drive-In are also setting up shop in Fondren Corner. While the original restaurant will remain open a couple doors north (there would be protests otherwise), Walker's Urban Grocery will open, providing gourmet food items and catering.
Bridgette's Monogram and Gifts, which was not previously located in a retail space, has also made its home at Fondren Corner. Bridgette's will offer monogrammed towels, receiving blankets, bed linens and anything else that will stand still long enough to be branded. The store also offers a wide spectrum of gift items including candles and toiletries.
Adding the final touch, Liz Henry will offer unique handmade jewelry that is made in the store by owner Kristi Gardner and her staff of five. The vibrant teal walls of the store serve as a beautiful backdrop for the earrings, necklaces and bracelets crafted from materials ranging from metals to stone. Kristi and her staff of artisans have been making wholesale jewelry for five years, but decided to open their first retail space in Fondren Corner because of its "quaint, artsy feel."
My wife and I visited the new store last Saturday afternoon. We were so impressed. The store is beautiful, and what a layout. Seems like it meanders forever. We loved the entire first floor of the old building. This is what is needed throughout Jackson. Many thanks to the developer and the entrepeneurs and businesses locating there. You can bet the we will be patronizing these establishments regularly. Now, let's do the same further downtown. Come on developers. We don't need to clear cut anymore woods to build. Now's the time to go back and redevelop and refurbish abandoned structures and property. Let's revitalize downtown Jackson!
I am so with y'all on this. This new building is a major sign that the city of Jackson is enjoying a major renaissance. And I agree with you: Let's continue the excitement further south and west. All it takes is all of us being more determined to shop, dine and go out local, and to tell other folks how much cooler and more interesting the city is than the suburbs. Cheers!
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