Monday, January 16th, 2017

Big change for Newark’s Skyline

Rumors have been travelling around Newark for a month or more. Is it true that the theatre is closing? What is happening at the Newark Village Pharmacy? Will Rite Aid in Newark move from their current location?

The answers all appear to be yes.

As of Thursday afternoon, Newark Village Pharmacy, a long time independent Pharmacy, owned by Darren Pynn, was bought out by Rite Aid. Prescriptions, medicines and all items on the shelves were transferred to Rite Aid in Newark, automatically switching all calls from the Newark Village Pharmacy to Rite Aid Newark by the afternoon.

Pynn said that he and several other businesses had been approached by Rite Aid, making an offer on their businesses and buildings, with a plan to open up the entire south west corner of Route 88 and East Union Street for a new Rite Aid Building.

The time frame is still open, according to Pynn, and Tom Crowley, who has also sold his Showplace 6 Multiplex theater in the deal with Rite Aid. “We will still be open for a few months, showing movies,” said Crowley.

The offer is accepted on the business, but he does not think the building will be torn down for about 6 months. He noted that Rite Aid does not construct their own buildings. A Buffalo developer will come in to build the new Rite Aid store and lease it back to the pharmacy.

NAPA Auto Parts sat next to the Newark Village Pharmacy, prior to moving to their new site on Route 88 North in the old New York State Department of Labor Building. The purchase of their building will also be a part of the deal. Owner Steve Goebert said he had not “officially” signed a contract yet, but was approached about 8 months ago by Rite Aid to buy the old building.

“The thing that finally persuaded me to do it (sell the business) was Real Estate. It was a once in a lifetime offer,” said Darren. He noted that independent pharmacies have been reeling from the types of requirements placed on them. “There is always new training, new manuals, licensing, regulations. You almost need a full time person just to handle the training,” said Pynn.

“When I spoke to someone on the street yesterday, they said “oh, I am so sorry. I will miss you”. I said “I’m not dying, I will be around town.” Pynn also owns a long term care pharmacy, LTC Pharmacy, which he started 2-1/2 years ago. He will continue to run that business, serving seniors, assisted living facilities, etc. “I did not sell that business and I plan to continue it.” His doors at the East Miller Street site are closed, but the sale has not been completed yet. He does not know the time frame for tearing it down, so officially he still owns the building until the final paperwork is in.

“I will miss my customers. I feel bad that contractually I could not let them know what was coming until Rite Aid officially took over Thursday,” said Darren.

Rite Aid corporate offices said in a statement on Friday: “For the convenience of Newark Village Pharmacy customers, the Rite Aid on East Union Street – or any Rite Aid – can now begin filling their prescriptions with complete access to their past prescription records. This seamless transition is occurring automatically and will include prescription delivery service for these customers as an extra convenience .”

Several other local pharmacies, hearing the news of Newark Village Pharmacy’s closing, quickly let the public know that they were willing and able to take over prescriptions.

Tom Crowley, and his partner Dave Reynolds at Showplace 6 theatres confirmed the sale of their building to Rite Aid also. “We expect the deal will conclude in about six months, and we will remain open until then, stated Crowley.

“It is with mixed emotions that we leave the business, but with the current economic climate, we weren’t left with many options,” explained Tom. “With property taxes approaching $100 a day, the ever increasing costs for utilities and other overhead, and the film distributors taking most of the ticket revenue, the decision to sell was any easy one,” Crowley lamented. Tom confirmed that the theater, pharmacy and former NAPA store will all be torn down to make way for the new Rite Aid store,
“I would like to thank our patrons, who supported us from day one — especially the senior citizens – who came every week, no matter what was playing. I would also like to thank our past and present employees who made the past 20 years at Showplace 6 possible, and look forward to taking a long vacation and spending time with my wife, daughters and two wonderful granddaughters.”

Tom will continue on as a Macedon Town Justice and a substitute teacher at the Newark High School.