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<BR>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Prineville Hardware to close/Emporium to open <BR>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;(this breaking story will be expanded on for next Tuesday's edition of the Central Oregonian)

There is a spate of bad news and good news for local retail shoppers; Prineville Hardware is closing and will be replaced by an Emporium clothing
store.
   The owners of the Prineville Hardware store in the Ochoco Plaza are calling it quits. The store has been sold to the Troutman's Emporium Company and the hardware store owners, Gary and Anthony Hackman, have 75 days to turn over the keys. The new owners, Gary Hackman said, wants to be open early in August, "in time for the back to school sales."
   While things at the hardware store have been slow recently, Hackman said he closed his store in Madras when the new BiMart Store opened, and pumped that money into the Prineville store, he said the recent opening of the BiMart Store east of the Plaza isn't the only reason he's selling out. "It wasn't really BiMart. That hurt but we just can't go on with all the mill layoffs and now with the federal government going to Bend or Redmond. The people in this city should kiss old Les Schwab: He's sticking it out."
   To turn the keys over to the Emporium company, the hardware store will have to be emptied by early July. Hackman's close out sale will begin this week and not end until all the $1.25 million in stock is gone.
   Another Prineville hardware store, McCarthy's Ochoco Hardware on Court and Third Streets, remains closed. That store closed its doors some time ago when the owner declared bankruptcy. The building owners, Lawrence and Ellie Mayfield, have been unable to sell the stock and do anything with the structure until the legal aspects of the bankruptcy have been settled.
   Ellie Mayfield said when that happens, they don't plan to sell the remaining stock in a public sale but will liquidate to another business. Once that is done, she added, a new business will open at the location. "We have somebody waiting in the wings," she said. "There will be new occupancy."
   Mayfield would not elaborate on who the new occupant will be.
   For more on this story, see Tuesday's Central Oregonian