Cold Spring Musical Chairs

Shops shift on Main Street

Property owners and store proprietors have always moved the chess pieces around, but as the fog of COVID-19 lifts, significant changes are coming to Main Street in Cold Spring.

Two of the tenants displaced by the recent sale of 81 Main St. — the building adjacent to Village Hall that housed the Knights of Columbus Hall, Cape Cod Leather, Cold Spring Sweets and Vintage Guitars of Cold Spring — will bring a dry goods retail store west of the railroad tracks.

Down and across the street, in the block between Depot Square and Doug’s Pretty Good Pub, the jeweler Lewis & Pine opened in September at 38 Main St. and Cold Spring Apothecary opened this month at 40 Main after making the move from 75 Main at Rock Street. It occupies nearly half of the 6,564 square feet that has been empty since the Ellen Hayden Gallery and two antique stores vacated in 2020 after 34 years in the location. 

The Knights of Columbus chapter, Loretto Council No. 536, had been at 81 Main St. since 1920, when it created a for-profit entity, the 536 Club, to buy the 1870 building. The cavernous upstairs room served as its headquarters until the pandemic and rising costs made it too expensive to maintain, said Dan Dillon, president of the 536 Club.

Going forward, the Knights will meet at Our Lady of Loretto on Fair Street, where they will also resume in-person fundraising dinners and other events.

The new owners of 81 Main, which was listed for $689,000, are a professional couple who plan extensive renovations to return the 2,856-square-foot space to its former grandeur, said Jonathan Miller, a broker at JonCar Realty in Beacon who handled the sale. The upper floor will become an apartment with exposed brick and a soaring ceiling. New retail will occupy the ground floor, he said.

bobby and mary

Bobby Ginsberg, who runs Cold Spring Sweets and Vintage Guitars of Cold Spring, and Mary Zaslansky, who owns Cape Cod Leather, at 11 Main St. (Photo by M. Ferris)

Mary Zaslansky, who owns Cape Cod Leather, and Bobby Ginsberg, who runs Cold Spring Sweets and Vintage Guitars of Cold Spring, which had to leave 81 Main, have been friends and business partners for years. Mary’s husband, Elliott Zaslansky, who died last year, sold Ginsberg his first guitar in 1975.

They wanted to keep everything under one roof, just as they had at 81 Main. When properties in Beacon failed to pan out, the odds seemed slim that they would find anything with retail space as well as a kitchen and space for refrigerators that Ginsberg requires to make fudge and chocolate.

But things gelled when a friend, Angie Laikin, a real-estate entrepreneur who lives in Newburgh, began looking for an investment property in the village. She had missed out on 81 Main, but when 11 Main came on the market at $900,000, she jumped at the opportunity.

“It was absolutely serendipitous the way everything worked out,” said Zaslansky, who reopened Cold Spring Leather on Oct. 7.

The building at 11 Main, formerly a three-story brick home built in 1845 and renovated in 2009 as office space, was in turn-key condition, said Laikin. One nice touch is a stained glass panel above the doorway. 

Leather products fill the ground floor with earthy aromas; the candy shop occupies a nook in the back. Another venture, Vintage Vinyl of Cold Spring, fills the second floor with crates of records. An attic loft serves as a guitar gallery and offers an inspiring view of the pier and Crow’s Nest.

After conducting their due diligence, Ginsberg and Zaslansky concluded that the location west of the tracks could be advantageous. “Almost everyone who visits Cold Spring walks to the river,” said Ginsberg.

Laikin said she would have purchased the 1,910-square-foot building even if her friends decided against moving in. “I’m so happy about how this worked out,” she said. “It’s win-win, and it’s fun. I mean, music, candy, leather? Come on.”

When Ginsberg and the Zaslanskys opened in Cold Spring eight years ago, they were at 49 Main, west of The Foundry Rose cafe and the former home of Cold Spring Apothecary, which had expanded to 75 Main.

At 75 Main, the health-and-wellness Ascend Center, which occupies the second and third floors of the ivy-covered building, plans to open a retail collective on the ground floor devoted to goods made by women.

Just west of the new Apothecary site, Lewis & Pine has moved into 38 Main, most recently the home of Chapeau. Yali Lewis, who makes her own jewelry (some pieces require a blowtorch) opened in Beacon seven years ago but wanted a second location in Cold Spring.

She said she has fond memories, while growing up in Poughkeepsie, of frequent visits to the village. “It’s amazing how many people tell me how glad they are that I moved in and helped transform the block,” she said. “No one in Beacon ever thanked me for opening.”

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