Longtime Bethesda Favorite Closing In Bradley Shopping Center


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  After 60 years, the Bruce Variety store in Bradley Shopping Center is closing. The supply shop known for its vast collection of crafts, fabrics and other assorted items you probably didn't even know existed is having a clearance sale today. Everything is half off. A sign in the window says the store will be moving. An employee said the store will likely close in a week or two and will be open on New Year's Day. The owner was not available. The store, at 6922 Arlington Rd. next to Strosniders Hardware, stocked hairnets, cotton underwear, even bras. Blogger Robert Dyer reported the store is closing because of rent increases. Now, fans of the store have started an online petition asking the shopping center owner to allow Bruce Variety to renegotiate its lease. More than 140 people have signed:  Like all of you I have loved Bruce Variety in downtown Bethesda for years. Walking into that store lets me take a trip back in time to when the world seemed like a gentler, simpler, more civilized place. It would be so sad for Bethesda to lose that vestige of the past. I am wholeheartedly a supporter of the free market, but I also support individual's rights to show their support (or boycott!) for a shopping center based upon strong community desires. Bruce's is more than just a store; it's a unique atmosphere in this day and age that brings a wonderful vibe to the otherwise largely cookie-cutter corporate stores that surround us. -Bethesda Community  

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