It really is the end of an era for one Downtown Hamilton institution.
Cheapies is closing.
Signs went up in their front windows this week announcing that the store would be closing and their current stock would be offered up at a steep discount (as if things weren’t cheap enough).
For decades that colourful, iconic King Street storefront has been serving the needs of Hamilton’s die-hard music and gaming fans.
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It’s the place you went to discover rare vinyl and cassettes from your favourite artists, or traded in your CDs to get money for cigarettes (ok, maybe not all of us, but back when I was an unemployed teenager this is how we did it).
I got both ‘Use Your Illusions’ on cassette here. Oh, the joy I felt getting on that bus back home and loading up my walkman with my new tapes.
Cheapies has been locally owned and operated since 1978 and they have lived in their current space, the former Chicken Roost, since 1988.
Understandably so, the reaction on social media has been one of devastation.
“I’ve been given a lot of fond memories from this place,” wrote Redditor Weatherhouse. “Cheapies will be missed by a lot of folks.”
User spazzmine chimed in: “This is a huge bummer. Cheapies is the best store on that strip! One of my favourite features of Hamilton.”
With all of the closures of retail stores in Hamilton this year, this one is particularly hard to take. They were a haven for music fans (and gamers) for more than 40 years.
Without a doubt, a huge loss for that stretch of King Street.
For those wanting to get in there one last time to take advantage of their even more deeply discounted prices, you better hurry up because the shelves are clearing out quickly.
There’s no official word on when Cheapies will close their doors for good but rumour has it that it will be in March.
Farewell, Cheapies. You will be sorely missed but thank you for the memories.