Reopen the Manhassett Village Store, resident says

Brentwood resident, Barry Williams, said he has fond memories of going to the old Manhassett Village Store, which is the only building left standing, on Eager Road, after the former Manhassett Village was demolished. Now he’d like to see it reopened as a store.

In June, Williams sent a letter to Forrest Bailey, the president and CEO of Draper & Kramer, the owner — since 1939 — of the Manhassett Village site, to try to convince him to do that.

Dear Mr. Bailey, I lived near the Manhassett Village in St. Louis County, Missouri, as a boy in the 1960s, and one of my favorite destinations in those years was the apartment complex’s quaint general store, the Village Store, located at 8915 Eager Road. This store was patronized not only by Manhassett residents, but by the residents of the adjacent and much-larger Audubon Park apartment complex, known today as Brentwood Forest. When the original Manhassett complex was demolished some years ago, the only structure left standing was the former Village Store.

Suggestion:  Please return this historic building to its original purpose – a convenience store – as part of your Manhassett redevelopment project. Many residents of Richmond Heights and Brentwood would love this! Many of us are still around here from those years and still reminisce about the old store.  Draper & Kramer would gain valuable goodwill locally were it to resurrect this store. But more importantly, it would benefit your future Manhassett residents to have a convenience store located at this walkable site on Eager Road.

I hope you can find a way to make this happen.

According to Williams, Forrest Bailey can be reached at Draper & Kramer at (312) 346-8600, or BaileyF@draperandkramer.com, for anyone else interested in promoting the cause.

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15 thoughts on “Reopen the Manhassett Village Store, resident says

  1. I think it’s a fantastic idea. Quaint is good, and walkers would be the patrons. Can’t imagine it would cause more traffic. No one would drive there do do major marketing. It would be a place to visit for those nobility items or staples forgotten at the main grocery store. It would be a neighborhood store that would give memories to the youngsters living in the neighborhood. Just like it did for us as children. Loved that little village store!

  2. I lived at WRENWOOD and Eager as a kid. We were right across the street from Chaffee Woods. I remember riding my Schwinn up that Hill to get wax lips or Lays potato chips with the money I made returning soda bottles. My dad and I walked there when he told me my grandmother had died. Charlie and Edith/Ester? We’re the older couple who ran the place. Miss Kramer, who also worked at Frazier, worked in the office next to the store. Many, many memories. If Old Towne St. Charles can make nostalgia hip again why not the Village Store?

  3. The original neon sign would be a great nostalgic feature of a reopened store. As I remember it said nothing about Manhasset. It simply read, “Village Store; Borden Ice Cream”.

    • Ah, Borden Ice Cream! I wonder if anyone has a photo showing this old neon sign.

  4. I’m another fan of the old Village Store who would love to see it reopened. This section of Richmond-Brentwood is presently a convenience-store “desert.” There are no walkable milk & bread shops in this large and densely-populated residential district. If parking continued to be limited to on-street on Eager Road, as it was in the 1940s, 1950s, and 1960s, there wouldn’t be an impact on traffic, and Jill and Cecelia might actually enjoy not having to drive to Dierberg’s when they run out of milk. In the 1960s, the Village Store was second only to Spicer’s when it came to candies and treats. I can still recall walking on the store’s creaky wood floor and lusting over the vast assortment of goodies. Hostess Twinkies, Suzy-Qs, and Cupcakes cost 10 cents each then.

  5. Great idea, Barry! We as a society need to walk more, and that was the Village Store’s greatest strength — it was walkable for the many residents of Audubon Park and Manhassett Village. More than two-thirds of its revenue came from pedestrians. For it to have remained profitable all those years while never having an automobile parking lot says it all. A word of advice to Eager’s Lady Curmudgeons: You might enjoy more respect and credibility if you understood an issue before automatically trashing it. A general store aimed at walkers could actually reduce vehicular traffic on Eager Road. EBBOM! (Engage Brain Before Opening Mouth.)

  6. Hey Barry, Jill Franks and Cecelia Nangle do not want anymore traffic on Eager. If the two ladies live on Eager, they must live on the South side of the street which is Brentwood side and the only traffic they should be concerned about is the traffic going from West to East. The traffic on the North side is Richmond Heights traffic concern going from East to West. Eager is already used by Brentwood residence to get to the Galleria by avoiding traffic on Brentwood Blvd. How about opening a Ted Drew’s branch in the building or a laundry mat. Come on Jill and Cecelia be team players!

  7. Traffic is a mess now and will only get worse when the apartments open…we do not need more traffic now or ever.

  8. I agree with Barry. I lived in Manhasset throughout my high school years. It wasn’t a place to drive to. It was walking distance to Manhasset and Brentwood Forest. I loved that place and so did my children when they would visit their grandmother in Brentwood Forest!

  9. Hey Barry, you have a great idea. We have lived in Brentwood thirty-eight years and always thought the building was a rental office. I am sure there are some residence nearby who would use the store for last minute a small item they need which they may have forgot to buy at the larger stores. I hope someone acts favorable to your letter. Good luck on your effort for community progress.

  10. I know the owner of the original sign for Manhasset , needs some work.. Be nice if it was included in the development, aka Brentwood Square”

    • I like J. Butler’s idea of incorporating the historic sign into the new Manhassett development, a la Brentwood Square. I hope he/she will contact Draper & Kramer and suggest this. Draper & Kramer plans to change the name of this site from Manhassett to Evo, but there’s no reason why the old sign still couldn’t be displayed, like a historic marker. It was Barry Williams who rescued the iconic “Brentwood Square” neon sign in 2000, and this caused Pace Properties to change course. Instead of changing the name of the retail center from Brentwood Square to Brentwood Town Center, Pace decided to keep the historic name and install the iconic sign prominently on the new building.

  11. That stretch of Eager Road does not need any more traffic. It is a residential street and it needs to stay that way. We should not trust the developer to keep it a “quaint general store” just because someone has fond memories of days past.