Franklin Countys First News

Business on the east side booming

Amy Morin, co-owner of the Eastside Mall on Farmington Falls Road, stands at the door of Black Bear Graphics.

Amy Morin, co-owner of the renovated Eastside Mall on Farmington Falls Road, stands at the door of Black Bear Graphics.

The Eastside Mall is at full capacity with five businesses.

The Eastside Mall is at full capacity.

FARMINGTON - The east side of town is experiencing a surge in new businesses opening up in a long row of buildings known locally as the mini mall on the Farmington Falls Road.

The Eastside Mall had only two long-term tenants, Mr. Adams Tattoo and the Farmington Martial Arts Academy, when Amy and Nate Morin of Industry bought it last February.

The mall at 805 Farmington Falls Road, which is also busy Routes 2 and 27, had been home over its nearly 30-year life span to a wide variety of businesses that included an indoor slot car race track, a U-Haul and vehicle rental, a pawn shop and various auction or consignment stores.

In purchasing the aging building at an auction, the Morins went to work getting the electrical and plumbing systems updated and painting the exterior. The couple then moved their thriving Black Bear Graphics print shop into the mall. The operation, which began in their Industry home's garage in 2007, had most recently been operating for nearly five years from a location downtown in a store that faced the municipal parking lot.

The move to the mall allowed them to triple their store and print production space, provide plenty of parking, better visibility and at a much lower cost than the downtown space.

"It suits our needs," Nate Morin said of the new space.

Black Bear was joined soon after by Nancy Bryant's Shears To You hair salon and Melissa Treadwell-Theriaque's Back Road Prims & Prints. Theriaque recently moved to New Sharon from Norridgewock and wanted to open a folk and primitive art and rustic furniture store that features her unique printing technique that transfers a print photo image onto wood. It's been a hobby of hers for years and she saw the mall's space as a good place to start her new business. She opened her store on Oct. 12. Store hours are Wednesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The store space at the other end of the mall is currently undergoing renovation and will soon be opening as another new business, Tumbledown Brewing, said owner Matt Swan. After brewing beer at his home for years, he decided to take it to the next level and open up commercially.

The plan for the small craft brewery is to start out by offering three styles of beer: an Irish red, a smoked stout and an IPA.

According to their Facebook page, "We brew beer in small batches, but give it taste as big as the mountains that inspire us; enjoy one today!"

With the addition of the brewery, the mall is at full occupancy, the Morins said.

The Back Road Prims & Prints store opened on Oct. 12 in the Eastside Mall in Farmington.

The Back Road Prims & Prints store opened on Oct. 12 in the Eastside Mall in Farmington.

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9 Responses »

  1. CAN'T WAIT TO GO CHECK IT OUT!

  2. and that Tumbledown Beer is good!!!

  3. As a result of a referral from a friend I have purchased some great (men's) outdoor wear from Black Bear Graphics. They carry the 5-11 Tactical line of clothing which is very well made and offers 2-3 different material choices. I purchased 4 pair at an excellent price and it strikes me they may just last me the rest of my lifetime! I am very pleased.

  4. Congrats, Amy and Nate!

  5. Nice pic Amy Morin!

  6. Congratulations Matt & Meaghan Swan !!!
    Hope the craft brewery does well !!!!

  7. You are a model of what hard work and integrity can accomplish. This move will make you wealthy in more ways than one. Best of luck although, with your ethics, you're unlikely to need any.

  8. So glad for you, Nate & Amy...we have loved your work for years!

  9. Thanks to everyone!! We hope you all come out to see what the new East Side Mall has to offer!

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