DENVER -- One local Black-owned gift shop in the Five Points neighborhood is closing its doors after more than 20 years in business. The owner says the pandemic is part of the reason but also points to a changing landscape in her neighborhood.
You may not be able to see it now, but she says the Denver neighborhood was once filled with soul and Black culture.
"I think Black people recognize that this used to be our old stomping grounds," said owner of Neat Stuff, Jacquelyn Logan.
Formerly known as the "Harlem of the West," Five Points is unrecognizable to those who have been in the neighborhood the longest.
"I accept the fact that things change and that people that have money are the ones who come in, and in our case, it seems to be more of not
Black people," said Logan.
Logan opened her gift shop, Neat Stuff, 23 years ago on Welton Street. Since then, looking outside her window doesn’t bring her the same joy it once did.
"I miss that closeness. I don’t have that closeness that I used to have with everybody up and down the street. There used to be a Black store next door, but now its an insurance company. It’s a white insurance company, and that’s OK," said Logan.
After decades of selling everything from art to small collectibles, Logan will be closing her doors for good because of the pandemic and feeling how much the neighborhood has changed.
"As we’re closing up business, we’re just putting out all kinds of things that we’ve had," said Logan.
But one of the things she’ll miss the most, is sharing a simple conversation with her customers.
"I used to have a recliner in here back in the day, and then I had a chair, and then I didn’t have any chairs, but it doesn’t matter because people would find a chair and that’s how I really got to know people," said Logan.
Sometimes change is inevitable over time. Logan accepts that even as she remains nostalgic over days gone by.