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Family gives Claremont building new life

September 7, 2011

A family of four is giving new life to an abandoned building in Claremont.

The family of Christy, Kemp, Parker and Tyler Sigmon will open Claremont Hardware and Farm Supply in October, a facility renovation of the former Claremont Wholesale building. In the process they hope to maintain jobs and increase city revenue.

Claremont’s City Council gave its blessing to an economic incentive agreement with the Sigmon family that will help with costs associated with making it more aesthetically pleasing. City leaders are still working out details of the incentives. The agreement is also expected to include a tax incentive for the family and will help them continue renovations that started two months ago, said Christy Sigmon, one of the store’s owners.

“It’s going to be kind of a family business,” Christy said, adding that her husband Kemp, and two sons Tyler and Parker, will all be involved with the store.

Tyler, a senior at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Va., wants to be a farmer, Christy said, and the young entrepreneur noticed that the former Claremont Wholesale building would be a good place for a farm supply store.

“Tyler wants to get into farming, and he thought, ‘This is my chance to get into it,’” she said.

The store will house general hardware equipment at first, and eventually, the Sigmons plan on selling mulch, rock and topsoil in addition to feed for livestock and horses. There will also be a gift section and a place for customers to sit around and chit-chat as well, Christy said.

“We want you to feel welcomed in here,” she said.

In addition to starting to purchase the building in July, the Sigmon family also purchased 90 acres of farmland two miles away from the store.

Tyler, along with his family, will grow row crops at the farm, Christy said.

“My husband, Kemp, has always wanted to be on a small farm,” Christy said. “We are going to have a few cows, a couple dogs, things like that.”

The renovation of an old building improves Claremont’s downtown area, said Claremont City Manager Doug Barrick.

“For us, it fills a vacant space in the heart of our downtown that was historically used as a hardware store,” Barrick said. “It not only brings jobs, but dollars to Claremont. It’s a retail draw for Claremont. We have certain retail shops downtown, but this can bring people during the day and on weekends as well.”

Barrick said the family hopes to open the store on Oct. 1, which is Claremont Day.

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