I would always walk past Continental Hardware: the closest and only local hardware store of my area in Forest Hills but this is my first time going inside. Located on 10201 Metropolitan Ave, 5 minutes away from me, this little shop contained no specific hardware. A little of everything from plumbing to paint, even kitchen and network cables are available. It wasn’t a place to go for big items such as sinks or granite tops; rather small, specific things you would need for everyday fix-it jobs around the house such as various size hooks, pipes, nuts and bolts, screws, cables, etc. There was also no lumber sold here, sadly.
The staff were helpful, but not intrusive. They asked me what I was looking for, I told them I was here for an assignment and just wanted to check the place out. The manager very politely told me if I needed anything, he’ll answer any questions I had, and with that went right back to what he was doing. He didn’t pester me or try to sell me anything the entire time, which I appreciate.
As for the store itself, it was very overwhelming at first because the entrance is so cramped, you have to squeeze through shelf after shelf of random appliances and items, it looked like someones garage sale. I didn’t think I would be able to find anything in there. But as I took my time, and went through every aisle, I realized everything was very organized similarly to the aisles at Home Depot. It just looked messy because the store is extremely old-fashioned and not every item is brand-new stuff. Again, you would come here if you need something very specific, things only these local shops would carry.
Since this place is old-school, they mostly have hand-tools. The only power tools I saw were the basic ones such as corded drills, jigsaws, sanders, circular saws, and hammer drills; and there was just one shelf all the way on top dedicated to them. I had to ask where they were since I couldn’t even see them.
Because this place is so traditional and local, everything was reasonably priced, nothing outrageous but this also means no buyers club to be seen.
What makes this hardware store stand out is that it’s, like I mentioned before: the closest and only local hardware store of my area. After I told the manager I was doing a homework assignment for school about visiting a local hardware shop, he told me I was lucky to even find one, these local places are going extinct. He also told me there used to be seven hardware stores in Forest Hills, now Continental Hardware is the only one still standing since 1922. I’ll be sure to visit this shop more often now that I finally had a chance to go inside and experience it and try to keep them in business so they can last another 92 years.